before and after

before & after: two laundry room makeovers

by Kate Pruitt

Laundry rooms usually fall prey to neglect and disarray, so it’s nice to see not one but two laundry rooms receiving some love and attention today. This first laundry room of Cindy’s was lacking a bit of “finish,” which is often the case with the more utilitarian rooms in the house, but she certainly solved that issue with her lovely decorative touches and the vivid robin’s egg paint color. I would love to fold laundry in such a cheerful room. Great transformation, Cindy! — Kate

Time: 4 days

Cost: under $50

Basic Steps: My husband moved the light fixture into the room and helped with painting. The board and batten treatment was initially the most daunting part of the project but turned out to be very easy. I drew out a plan and some measurements and had Home Depot cut the wood for the battens and ledge for me. I painted the wood with paint I had on hand and nailed the battens to the wall. Then I caulked them and filled the nail holes and painted another coat of paint.

What I learned from doing the laundry room was that once I had my original vision for the design, everything fell into place very easily. My advice for anyone attempting to take on a room renovation is that despite how much work there seems to be from start to finish, it was way easier than I thought it would be and I was very surprised that I was able to do almost all of the work by myself . . . it was a great feeling of accomplishment and pride. If I could do it, anyone can!!! — Cindy

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CLICK HERE for Alicia’s after!

I’m so desperate for my own laundry room, I would happily take the “before” off Alicia’s hands. However, I think she has done wonders for the space; her smart decisions have turned a once-dark nook into a bright and cheerful cleaning corner. The added detail of citron behind the shelves provides the perfect pop of color, and painting the tile was a smart move. Great work, Alicia!

Time: Three weekends

Cost: $492 (including professional installation of cabinets, taps, paint and supplies)

Basic Steps: Preparation: Remove unnecessary/unsightly features (in this case the heinous green blinds). Putty, sand and wash walls, trim and ceiling. Then paint walls, trim and ceiling. Prime and paint tiles. After that we added storage: overhead cupboards provide storage for tools, gardening gear and cleaning products. The open shelves prevent the room from looking too claustrophobic. Hooks and rails make use of vertical space to create extra storage for frequently used items.

Finally for the details: removing the scungy window film and replacing the taps made the whole space fresher and sleeker. We added the green shelf backs and gallery wall to provide homey touches and tie the laundry to the adjoining room.

Tips: Decorating is not just about adding. Start by simplifying the space (in this case, by painting the whole space white) then you’ll have a blank canvas with which you can more easily add storage and décor. And never underestimate the power of paint! — Alicia

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