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How to Choose Laundry Room Furniture

Create a washday wonder that's a pleasure to use when you outfit it with fabulous furnishings.

By Jan Soults Walker

It's not typical to call your laundry room a favorite, but it just might be with smart furniture choices. The right furnishings can give this utilitarian space a beauty boost while improving function—definite enticements to better enjoy your time there and get more accomplished. Here's a look at some possibilities.

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Ken Kelly

Organizational wonders

There are plenty of task-related items to store in the laundry room—detergents and boosters, fabric softeners, bleach, stain removers—the list goes on and on. To help conquer the cleaning squad clutter, consider a freestanding armoire, cabinet, or cupboard. If you prefer expediency, a set of open shelves makes it easy to spot and access whatever you need. One option: Watch for affordable flea market finds for a style that only looks better the more you use it and the more wear that occurs.

Plan to position storage pieces near your washer and dryer to minimize steps.

Chore helpers

Think of furnishing needs for your laundry room in terms of activities:
  • Fold. Any piece of furniture with a long, flat surface or top that's hip- or waist-high can serve as a convenient folding station, such as a farm table. Bonus points if the piece offers storage below, such as a dresser or console.
  • Sort. Receptacles for separating whites, darks, and colors help speed the washing process. Look for specially designed cabinets with tilt-out bins or slide-in baskets, just right for sorting clothing. Another option: A bench that's the adequate height and width below the seat so you can slip in a trio of laundry baskets below. Label the front edge of the seat above each basket: whites, darks, colors.
  • Tote. Look for carts with wheels to make it easy to transport clean, folded laundry for distribution throughout the house and returning dirty duds for washing and drying.
  • Hang. A tall cabinet with a rod can provide a handy spot to hang clothing fresh from the dryer so it stays wrinkle-free.
  • Drip dry. Look for open shelves with pegs or a hanging rod below to hang-dry delicate clothing items. (Make sure there's a drain or waterproof surface below.)
  • Double duty. A large laundry room can serve multiple purposes with the proper furniture. Add a desk for computing, bookkeeping, homework, and menu planning.
  • Mudroom. When a laundry room serves as a family entryway, create a drop zone. Add personalized lockers with pegs or hooks, open shelves, and drawers for each family member to hold coats, hats, boots, book bags, sporting goods, and more. For ideas, see 9 Organized and Inspired Mudrooms.
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