For the first year we lived in this house, the laundry was in the basement. The stairs leading down to the basement are narrow and it's unfinished and dreary down there. Dirty and clean laundry often ended up piled in our foyer, on the couch, or on the stairs. There were dozens of times when we'd have to run a load of wash over again after it sat wet and forgotten in the washing machine for several days. It was far from convenient to have the laundry down there. So as soon as we moved in, moving the laundry upstairs was at the top of our projects list.
This week, we finally put the finishing touches on the laundry nook on our second floor, and it's glorious. Laundry has never been easier, and Silas even does half of my job by loading and unloading the machines for me. I've even gotten around to washing things like rugs and duvets because it's just so much easier.
The second floor is where all of our bedrooms are located, and there was a small linen closet at one end. We hired a contractor, a plumber, and an electrician (all friends of ours) to create a larger space/closet for the laundry, and run gas and water lines. As much as I love a good DIY, Chris and I know nothing about plumbing or electricity, so it was worth it to hire out for that stage. The process of rebuilding the larger space (we took a little bit of space from the hallway and the bedroom behind it), running the proper lines and installing the machines took about five weeks.
After the professional work was finished, we painted the inside of the nook a bold teal (Thermal Spring by Behr), and then it sat semi-finished all summer. Functional, with the machines hooked up, but without doors or shelving.
Last weekend, it was time to finish up, so Chris installed the bi-fold doors (and some spunky knobs I found on clearance at Anthro) and created some shelving. He bought pine boards from Home Depot, cut them to size, sanded and poly-ed them. They were the perfect simple solution to hold our linens and laundry essentials.
We'd still like to add in a countertop over the machines, and install a fold-down ironing board, but for now, we'll call it finished.
Because of the location of the laundry nook right at the top of the stairs, it's a little difficult to get great pictures, but here are a few shots to give you an idea of how it turned out. And in an ideal world, I'd have the shelves beautifully accessorized, but at 9 months pregnant, I'm just about out of steam, so I'm working with what we've got and I'm perfectly happy with it.
PS. Sherry and John from Young House Love are creating their own laundry nook, and have been writing pretty detailed posts about each stage-- check their blog out for more on the nitty gritty aspects of creating a laundry room, and the gorgeous details they've included.