$350 Laundry Room Make-Over

Grey laundry room

Laundry Room Makeover

After living in our current home for 7 years, the brown walls, brown carpet, brown tile and brown cabinets that we loved so much when we moved in had gotten old.  Brown now equals BLAH in my book, so I have been renovating our home room by room.  My most recent project was the laundry room.  Doing laundry is so boring and doing it in a blah laundry room makes it sooooo much more boring, therefore my goals were three-fold:

  1. Brighten up the space overall
  2. Make it fun but functional
  3. Do it all for under $400

To accomplish those goals, my plans were this:

1. Repaint the cabinets – YEAH SCARY!

While I would have liked to have just replaced the cabinets with new ones, a budget of $400 for everything I wanted to do in the laundry room was not going to allow it. Then there was also the fact that the cabinets are actually very nice cabinets, so to rip them out and send them to a landfill just wouldn’t feel right.

The cabinets, a reddish-brown color, are the same exact color cabinets we had in our previous house, so really we have been looking at the same color cabinets for 14 years now.  Time for a change.

For a neutral color, I’m really in love with grey. I also love the new style of bi-color cabinets – one color for the top and a different color for the bottom, so I decided I would paint them myself.  Of all the home improvement projects I have taken on over the past couple of years, this one by far scared me the most.  Probably because cabinets cost a fortune and if I screwed it up then I had a huge bill on my hands to replace them.  I read a lot of blogs and watched a lot of videos, but I still wasn’t comfortable that I could do it well.  Then one day I was driving around looking for locations to open my DIY craft studio when I came across a place called Restyle Junkie.  They had a sign listing DIY classes, so I stopped in to see what that was all about and lo-and-behold they were a cabinet painting shop!  You could either hire them to paint your cabinets for you or you could take a class.  I opted for the class to stay within my budget.  After taking the class I felt comfortable enough to attempt it on my own. Here are my before and after.

Unfortunately the width of my laundry room doesn’t allow me to stand back far enough to get the full view of the cabinets in the picture, but I think you get the idea…way awesomer.  The cost was $87 ($29 each for a can of light grey paint, dark grey paint and satin topcoat).

2. Replace the laminate countertop with… somethinganything… better than the current 70’s design

3. Add a backsplash behind the sink

I don’t know who on earth picked the design of the laminate countertop, but I felt like it was something from the 70’s, even though our home was built in 2010.

I decided to accomplish #2 and #3 by combining them into one project.  I removed the old countertop and replaced it with white laminated particle board (if it weren’t for the beveled edge on the current countertop, I could have tiled right over it).  Then I purchased this Eldon White Wood Look tile from Lowes and tiled over the particle board and up the wall to create both my new countertop and backsplash all-in-one.  I used 19 tiles at $1.19 per tile for a total of $22.61.  The particle board didn’t cost me anything because I used leftover boards from another project.

Eldon white counter top and backsplash

I just love how it turned out, so crisp and modern!  What I wasn’t loving was the cream colored electrical outlet and cover, so I painted those by hand to try and match them to the tile.

4. Remove the single wire shelf and replace with 2 nicer looking shelves

I’m not sure why we even bought that ugly wire shelf to begin with.  I guess it was just something quick and easy to install. It came from our previous home, where we probably should have just left it!

To keep my costs down, I decided to build 2 new shelves out of 1×4’s.  I purchased wooden brackets at Lowes, and then stained both the brackets and the shelves grey.  Total cost was $36.

5. Replace the manufacture’s detergent and fabric softener bottles with glass dispensers

It’s amazing how much nicer your laundry room looks when detergent and fabric softener are in glass dispensers!  I purchased this set at Steinmart for $19.99.

The fabric bins are from Ross, $3.99 ea. for small ones and $4.99 ea. for the large ones.  The wire bins came as a set of 3 for $12.99 from HomeGoods.

DIY grey wooden shelves

6. Re-paint the walls

I painted 2 of the walls white to brighten up the space and then painted the back wall in a colorful geometric pattern to bring a little fun into the room.  I purchased 2 gallons of the white paint for a total of $64.  The paint I used for the geometric pattern was leftover paint from various projects around the house.

7. Re-stain the wooden counter tops and re-paint the bases

The wooden counter tops and bases were the same reddish-brown as the cabinets, so I used the left-over cabinet paint to paint the bases, then I sanded down the tops, stained them grey and added a white-wash to it.

8.  Build a table for the drying rack and laundry baskets

If you look at the above picture on the left, you’ll see that the drying rack and laundry baskets sat on the wooden counter top.  Meanwhile, there was empty space on the side of the dryer, so I decided to move those items over.  Finding a table with the exact dimensions I needed to fit the space was not happening, so I decided to built if from particle board purchased for $22 and leftover 1×4’s from the shelves I made.

9. Add decor

I purchased this 9″ clothes pin at Joann Fabrics for only $2 (after a 40% coupon). I thought it would make a cute towel holder.  I attached it to the wall using 3M command strips.

The self service laundry bag was purchased as Ross for $10.  I use it to hold extra towels that we use around the house.

That glass bottle has been looking for a home for 14 years!  It was my husband’s dad’s bottle from his laboratory and it has been sitting in a closet ever since we got married.  I have been trying to find a place/use for it around the house and I finally found it!  The cheapest place to purchase clothes pins is Target – a pack of 50 for $1.79.  I purchased a total of 3 packs to fill the bottle.

The dachshund artwork was from a bathroom in our apartment in Chicago.  The frame was originally black, so I painted it grey and white to match the color scheme of the new laundry room.

The saw this Laundry Schedule sign online and it cracked me up because it is soooo me.  I made it using my cricut machine and some scrapbook paper.  The frame was stashed under my bed with all the other un-used frames I hang onto. It was originally brown so I re-stained it grey and whitewashed it.

I’m so happy with how the laundry room turned out, that I actually enjoy being in there now…even if it is to do laundry 😉.














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