By Laney Clancy
I have sometimes looked at photos of laundries of the likes of Martha Stewart and found myself daydreaming about ironing clothes in a pristine sunlit room with French doors and then happily spending hours sorting coloured from whites… Yeah right! Seriously though, while we can’t all have the luxury of space and unlimited budgets to make over the humble laundry, we can inject life and style to hopefully make laundry day a bit more pleasant. Whether you have a tiny room or an expansive one, here are some tips to improve the functionality of one of the home’s busiest space.
Clever features with a load of functionality
The key to laundry makeovers is doing away with all pre-conceived ideas about what a laundry should look like:
1) Replace the ugly laundry tub with a half small kitchen-style sink and a more versatile, pull-out vegie sprayer.
2) Consider a bench over the washing machine if possible and squeeze in as many cupboards as aesthetically possible. Use them to hide washing machine taps – us plumbers are the only ones who need to see them!
3) Add a rod under the top cupboards, or a ceiling-mounted drying rack to hang items to dry.
Multipurpose your laundry
You can make the most of the laundry by having it do double duty:
1) Install a spare loo to improve your house’s toilet-to-people ratio.
2) Use it as a mud room, or as an alternative entry to the house if access is convenient. Add some hooks for wet raincoats, bags and shelving for sports bags and you’re set!
3) Consider a pet-washing station.
Floods due to a burst hose or valve are one of the most common insurance claims, with damages costing several thousand dollars, so maintenance goes beyond just cleaning the lint filter.
1) Ensure appropriate ventilation.
2) Change the washing machine hoses and valves every two years and keep a reasonable gap between appliances and the wall to prevent kinked hoses and blockages.
3) Install flood-stop valves to close the pipes and stop the flow of water in the event of an overflow.
Inject some style
The phrase ‘glam laundry’ is not an oxymoron; there are loads of ways to inject some style into your laundry. Use colour to add interest with paint, tiles and splashbacks. Just make sure your paint is designed to withstand humidity and ideally has chemicals that prevent the formation of unhygienic mold and mildew.
You can add some warmth with wood in your furnishings or cabinetry or bright accessories for pops of colour. Some of our clients have had beautiful framed artworks and funky lighting hanging in their laundries, and others have used plants to warm up their space. The idea is to not be restricted in your thinking, simply because it’s a laundry.
What’s your best laundry makeover tip?
– Laney Clancy is the marketing and finance manager at Pipe Perfection Plumbers in Sydney, a business that includes specialist Enviroplumbers and more.