Sunday, January 16, 2011

Laundry room makeover

faucet hot knobFinally, I can call my laundry room done! It’s taken over a year to finish it. What was the hold-up? A shelf. Yes, a shelf! How silly is that?! And it’s not even a super-exciting shelf, but it IS functional.

So before I get to the laundry room makeover, here’s a quick look at the shelf makeover…

The original pine finish just wasn’t working for me. So at first, I thought I’d  just remove the shelf altogether and hang artwork on this wall instead with a line of hooks underneath for hanging coats. But hubby really wanted the shelf back because it not only has hooks for hanging coats, but it’s a good spot for putting mitts in the winter (the laundry room doubles as a mudroom). So I decided to give the shelf a makeover and put it back on the wall.

I cut off the five wood pegs and sanded the shelf down, primed it, and painted it Benjamin Moore Cloud White (the same colour as the cabinets and trim in the laundry room). Then I laid out the new chrome hooks (from Home Depot).

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You’ll have to keep reading to see the final product :-) Now on to the laundry room makeover… I’d love to have a beautiful laundry room with awesome windows like this:

pretty blue great interior design photo donna griffithImage via Great Interior Design

But sadly, our laundry room is land-locked with no windows at all. And I am SO coveting the Frigidaire Affinity front-loading washer & dryer in Glacier Blue. But sadly, our machines haven’t broken down… YET!


And I’d love to tile over the icky pink ceramic tile floor with marmoleum or laminate tiles, but hubby just won’t go for it. *Sigh* I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – go neutral with room elements that aren’t easily changeable! I’m trying to think of the pink tiles as the colour of  a sandy beach. So far, it’s not working out too well!

This is the layout of the laundry room (not necessarily to scale).

laundry room

It’s a pretty typical laundry room with a washer, a dryer, a set of cabinets, and a sink.


I came across this laundry room, and used it as the inspiration for our for our laundry room. What I really like about it is the wall of cabinets – perfect for lots of storage!

inspiration hampton designImage via Hampton Design

Hubby came up with a design for a similar wall of cabinets for our laundry room:

cabinets rev

I decided to use these tiles from Mirage Glass Tiles for the backsplash. They’re from the Lagoon Series and the colour is Dawn. Love the bubble look and the watery shades of blue. Hubby wanted an under-mount sink, so we chose a slab of Blue Pearl granite for the countertop. We had the granite cut & polished, and then we installed it ourselves.

lagoon series dawnBlue_pearl (1) 

It was SO hard to pick a wall colour for the laundry room. There’s absolutely no natural light in the room, so colours that looked perfect on the small paint chips were way too blue or too purple when I put the large sample chips on the wall. This is why it’s important to ALWAYS test a paint colour in the room it’s going in before you commit to putting it on the walls. I finally decided on Sico Windsor Gypsum, which is  a really greeny blue…

windsor gypsum

The colour choice was inspired partly by the colours in the backsplash and partly by a bottle of Sea Island Cotton hand soap from Bath & Body Works – you just never know where colour inspiration will come from! See how the greeny-blue looks a lot more blue-blue in this picture than in the sample above?


Some messy in-progress pics. You can see a little bit of the original shelf in the first picture. Oh, and look, a dirty litter box in the second picture – OOPS!

in progress 1 in progress 2 

Hubby moved the light switch from the long wall to the narrow wall around the corner, and fed a wire through the long wall for the under cabinet lighting. Drywall patches are from some repair work. Luckily, we didn’t have to move the plumbing for the new sink.

in progress 3

And here’s the same wall now:

cabinet wall

Hubby made new doors to replace the doors on the existing cabinets.

cabinets over washer

Cheap & easy artwork. I wanted to stay with the water/bubble theme, so I created two images of bubbles using Adobe Illustrator following this tutorial. I had them printed at Costco for about $2.00 each, and put them in Ribba frames from Ikea that I already had.

 bubble art 1

The cabinet hardware is from Home Depot. I like how the knobs sort of look like drops of water.  

 knobs 1   knob with baskets

The garage door end of the laundry room. There’s the shelf!

shelf wall

After I painted the room, I hung five of my Nova Scotia photos on this wall. The shelf covered up three of the holes from where the screws were. I figured, why not hang pics back on the other two screws to fill in the space between the shelf and the corner of the wall. (The shelf couldn’t be centered on the wall because of the door to the garage – it opens towards this wall.)

shelf and art

I love my glass floats :-) But they’ll be going to a safer place soon to make room for mitts & gloves.

floats 5

floats 3

I picked up the stone from a beach in Nova Scotia and the stick is from the cottage.


I picked up green & blue baskets from HomeSense for the open shelving. I’m not into symmetry, so I selected different styles and sizes and mixed up the colours.   


I love the backsplash!


The Edsvik faucet from Ikea provides lots of space to put big things in the sink for cleaning. And I love the old-fashioned looking hot & cold taps.

faucet 1 faucet knobs

Nook underneath the countertop. Enough space for a laundry  basket and a little trash can for dryer lint! I”m contemplating spray painting the laundry basket white. What do you think?

floor cubby

And that’s the laundry room makeover!

counter and backsplash

I’m linking up to Susan’s weekly Metamorphosis Monday blog party at Between Naps on the Porch. And I’m also linking up to two new-to-me blog parties at Dittle Dattle, Amaze Me Monday and Boogieboard Cottage, Masterpiece Monday. Be sure to pop by both blogs and check out lots more design transformations.

Boogieboard Cottage

sig turquoise


  1. VERY nice! My laundry room is literally a closet with a stacked washer/dryer. Looking forward to the day I can design my own laundry room too.

  2. Kelly!!! What a beautiful transformation! The color scheme is so fresh and pretty, the cabinets so much more functional and that backsplash is amazing. You're going to get clothes dirty now just so you can wash them. :-) Great job!

  3. great job! you and your hubby are a good team. :) happy washing!

  4. Kelly,
    What a great transformation! I love all the watery colours and the backsplash looks like sea glass.... Sadly my laundry room is not nearly as pretty but now I have something to aspire to! Take care!


  5. Wow! This looks fantastic Kelly. I LOVE that backsplash. But then you know what a sucker I am for cool tile work. The wall of cabinets is amazing, you and Brian do make a fantastic team. And I love the artwork. Beautiful job. Into the inspiration file this goes :) Kat

  6. I looove those splashback tiles. Gorgeous.
    I love no symmetry, its what makes our room personal and interesting.

  7. Kelly,

    How Devine! Love the bubble theme too. I can see how a "have to" will become a "want to" for laundry time. I had to replace my dynamic duo (new washer and dryer) in mid November then the water heater went out as well. Hmm...meaning total cleansing for the new year.

    Click over to Ideezine you've made my list on for the Super Comments Award.

  8. Amazing! What a gorgeous laundry. I love laundries and really appreciate seeing one so beautifully designed. Well done! Rachaelxx

  9. Wow - what a great transformation Kelly! I love all of it!

    The paint colour is very similar to the colour of my guest room (Pittsburgh Paint's Silver Marlin) - but I did a double-take when you said certain colours were "too purple"??? Too Purple - is this post written by Kelly James??? I don't think so - there is no such thing as too purple to Kelly James! :) LOL!

    I want that washer/dryer combo too - and I'm doing everything I can to "need" them - but no such luck :(.

    Painting the basket is a good idea, what about one of the colours of the other baskets - green or blue - just to break up the white.

    Good for you to get your first project for 2011 off the books - looking forward to reading about the next one...

  10. You and Brian never cease to amaze me with the makeover projects and results.
    Your laundry room looks fantastic... I love the backsplash and countertop and the cool faucet. In fact loving everything about your makeover. Its so fresh and all that storage space, fantastic!!!
    I agree the wicker laundry basket now needs a colour in keeping with the rest of the room.
    cheers, happy washing and drying :)

  11. Looks fantastic!!I l love that backsplash. I'm sure this makes laundry that much more fun :)

  12. That is the most fantastic mud room I have ever seen. I love all the details and that is one awesome backsplash.

  13. Kelly, This is an awesome laundry room. I don't want to even venture into my laundry room now. First of all blue is my favorite color. My laundry is blue and it doesn't look like this. Absolutely love the backsplash. I am too old to redo miine so I will enjoy yours. I love it all. Hugs, Ginger

  14. How pretty! You did such a great job. I know you'll love doing so much more now! lol The Costco prints and backsplash are perfect. Such great storage too.

    Hope you'll come see the picture wall I helped DD2 create in her home.


  15. WOW! You did a fantastic job on you laundry room make-over. I would be honored to have you add it to my blog party

    Amaze Me Monday Blog Party

  16. Amazing. I want a laundry room like yours.

  17. Looks great! Love the wall color, bubble pictures and the glass floats. I do think the laundry basket would look better painted white, but since it would be a pain in the butt to do it, I may not bother. ;O)

  18. Very very nice Kelly. You guys did a fantastic job. Love the color scheme and the fantastic backsplash. Very creative space planning.

  19. Hi Kelly~ Your laundry room is gorgeous- you did a great job! Love it-stopping by from BNOTP- nice to meet you! :)

  20. You have totally inspired me! My laundry room in the same since the house was built 5 years ago. Builders white... cheapish wood shelf along the top. And that's it! I spend a lot of time in there. (I fold as clothes come out of the dryer) so it should be pretty! Its going to be my next project! Yours came out amazing! And soothing too.


  21. Great call on the shelf. The room looks gorgeous! Laundry should be more pleasant haha. Hmm, yep white seems better for the basket.

  22. Oh man, Kelly your laundry room puts mine to shame!! I love this makeover, you have done a superb job. This is going to make you enjoy doing your laundry! Gorgeous!

    PS. When can I move in??
    Nancy xo

  23. I could definitely feel affinity with that Frigidaire duo !! Congrats on getting your shelf up too !!

  24. Ultra stylish laundry room! I love your designs! Have a great week!

  25. Wow! I'd like to stay in there all day. Do you need a laundry assistant?

  26. Kelly that is fantastic! You must love having all that storage too - perfect to keep everything in it's place. We have a laundry room/mudroom too and it is a constant battle trying to keep everything organized (especially at this time of year! Can you come over and do mine?? :)

  27. That backsplash is absolutely incredible!! I am in love!! Well done Kelly!

  28. Wow, that turned out amazing. Great job!

  29. You put my on the cheap laundry room redo to shame! I am renting so I must make do with what I have, but would love to make cupboards like yours. The backsplash is amazing, look like smooth ocean tumbled glass and like bubbles. The room is fantastic, fun place to hang out and do laundry now!

  30. This is truly fabulous!


    You have utilized the space extremely well (your hubs did a fantastic job w/ the shelving!)!

    You have lightened the space extensively and brought an immense amount of light to it, even without windows!

    This should definitely be featured in multiple magazines.



  31. Oh my heck, you did awesome, who cares if you don't have windows, your laundry room is to die for. It makes me know that I too could have a great laundry room too. *Sigh* Now to get the hubby on board:o)

  32. Hi Kelly...

    Ohh my gosh, your laundry room is FABULOUS, my friend! You and your hubby did a magnificent job with the makeover! I love the colors that you chose...the soft shade of blue...the green...with the white...AWESOME! It's so fresh...and serene at the same time! Guess it doesn't hurt to have a little of that serene feeling when having to do laundry! Hehe! Love all the cabinetry...what great storage you have! Ohhh...and that backsplash is gorgeous! You have decorated your laundry room sooo beautifully! Love all the art! Thank you so much for sharing your gorgeous laundry room with us...this was such a treat, my friend!

    Warmest winter wishes,
    Chari @Happy To Design

  33. Oh, I love it!
    The Blue Pearl is awesome with that tile splash! Everything looks great and the colors are awesome.
    It's funny, I posted about Laundry Rooms today too and even used the same photo (the first photo) in my post! Great minds think alike. :)

  34. What a beautiful space. Kudos to your husband's excellent millwork!

  35. Who wouldn't want to do laundry in a room so lovely!

  36. This is an awesome post, I would really love it if you linked this up to Masterpiece Monday at Boogieboard Cottage as well! Have a nice Week! Mary :O)

  37. Wow! Beautiful transformation! I'd almost enjoy doing laundry in that room. ;)

  38. OMG, Kelly, seriously? This is gorgeous!! No word of a lie, my jaw dropped when I saw the first "after" photo. You've outdone yourself on this one!! Great job!!

  39. Great laundry room transformation Kelly. Very fortunate to have a handy hubby. You must LOVE doing laundry in such a bright, classy room thay you designed yourself...I know I would.

  40. Its beautiful Kelly!! I would be doing laundry all day long - happily - if I had a laundry room look like that :) -- What an awesome job..and it really shows all the hardwork, time and effort you guys put in !

  41. Kelly, I love your new laundry room and all the detail, the Nova Scotia photography, the glass floats, the lighthouse. Your counter top is very nice and the stainless steel sink looks so elegant in the laundry room. Wow!
    We have so many nice photographs from our trips. I got really inspired to display them in our house...thanks!

  42. It really looks great. The under water theme really did it's job. The room is now more beautiful than others.

  43. Wow! Kelly, I love your transformation! Fabulous storage - you are a great team! I am very partial to your beautiful glass (!) floats and the wood from your cottage and the stone - wonderful tactile items that are meaningful to you - and your creative bubble art and, gosh, that backsplash is totally gorgeous!!! I certainly appreciate the inspiration! I will be showing my DH in the morning as proof that one does not NEED to use white subway tile (just because we happen to have some left over!)!!! ;)

  44. Hello Kelly - I'm brand new to your blog & Design Brilliance - **wow** - how lovely & fresh & I can't wait to convince my husband to become a part of my dream design team....

    Thanks for the inspiration!


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