All posts by Alida Garcia

Laundry Room Makeover

Our laundry room has been a neglected little room pretty much since the time we moved into the house.  The washer and dryer were put into place within a few days and that was that.  Nothing had  changed from the original builder set up for well over a year, almost two.  Well, nothing other than more and more miscellaneous items piling up on the misplaced shelf and counter top.

laundry room beforeI seem to have had a thing for collecting lamps :) .  I would see them at thrift shops and couldn’t seem to pass up the ones that appealed to me.  I did manage to get my problem under control and plan on unloading most of them if not all  (there are a couple more not in the photos) during our neighborhood yard sale next month.

Anyway, back to the laundry room.  You can see in the photo the counter top and shelf are both in odd spots.  The location of the counter top forces you to place the washer and dryer in the exact spot where they sit and it creates all that wasted spaced underneath counter top.  The biggest problem with the wire shelf is that it sits too low to use for hanging anything.

laundry room before 2My goals for this room were fairly simple:  Relocate the counter top and wire shelf, organize the chaos, add more storage and paint it.  I didn’t want to spend too much money on the project as it is just the laundry room.  A necessary evil in my mind.

Now I could have been a good girl and taken some in process pictures, but there really wasn’t much to show.  The final pictures are pretty self explanatory.

First, the space was emptied, except for the washer and dryer.  The counter top came out fairly easy, but that wire shelving was a different story.  If you’ve never used this particular type of shelving before, it is installed with these little screw/anchor brackets.  Not very difficult to install, but a huge pain to remove.  You can’t remove the brackets without leaving a decent size hole in the drywall.   So after that battle was won, the holes were patched and the walls painted.  I also had to do a little touch up on the wall where the counter top was removed, too.

laundry room after 1The walls are a gray color I mixed up using some leftover Deep Onyx from Behr and a few “oops” samples in lighter shades.  The counter top was relocated to the adjacent wall.  The wire shelf was cut in half and made into two shorter shelves.  I originally wanted to get rid of the wire shelving, but in order to keep costs down I decided to modify them instead.  Using a hacksaw I cut the shelf in half, creating two and then managed to salvage enough of the original hardware to rehang them.

In order to keep easy access to the water shut-off valves, I created a removable shelf behind the counter top using two 1×6 boards cut to length and glued/nailed together.  Both the shelf behind the counter top and the banding along the front of the counter top were stained using Dark Walnut from Minwax.

laundry room 2I wanted to be sure to hang the clothing rod at a height that would work for my big and tall boyfriend, so it sits a little higher than standard height.

laundry room after 3The white shelving in the corner was actually stolen borrowed from my daughter’s room.  It was actually two separate book shelves I built to sit on top of her desk (you can see them in their original home here).  I flipped one upside down, added another shelf then placed the second book shelf on top.  They are both screwed into the wall to avoid any problems.

Here’s a breakdown of what I spent (or would have had to if I didn’t already own it):

Paint & Stain: $0 – had both already. My custom mix was almost a gallon and I needed all of it, so approx. $30 for a gallon if new.  Stain would have been approx. $4 for a little can to do everything.

Clothing Rod Shelving: $8 on wall brackets for clothing rod. I had the clothing rod from another project ($6) and the 1×12 shelf on top was in my wood stock pile, so $0 there.  Approx. $12 to purchase.

White Corner Shelves:  $0 – stolen from another room.  To build something similar you would need a sheet of 3/4″ mdf, approx $30-35 and paint.

Shelf to cover water shut-off: $0 – had two 1×6’s in my wood stockpile.  Approx. $8 each to purchase.

Storage Boxes:  $40-45 for the new clear storage boxes.  The little baskets on the white shelving were thrift store finds for $2 each.

Artwork: $0 – gift from my momma this past Christmas.  Approx. $30-40 framed.

My total out of pocket: approx. $59

My biggest out of pocket expense was definitely the new storage boxes, but so worth it.  Everything I pulled out of the room went back in (slightly more organized :) ), minus a few items designated donate or yard sale like the lamps, the child hangers and a small table that had been tucked under the counter.  With the extra shelving I was also able to relocate some items that had been stored in the kitchen pantry like paint cans and light bulbs.

Overall, I am really happy with how the room has been transformed without spending a bundle of cash.  By working with items we already owned or had on hand it really kept the budget to a minimum.  And the best part is that it feels so much larger than it did in it’s previous configuration.  I don’t feel like I am walking into a cramped little corner every time I start a load of laundry.  Goals achieved.  Yay!


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Simple Solutions – Self Leveling Felt Pads

I discovered these little guys a couple of weeks ago and thought I would share this super simple solution to a rather annoying problem. See we live in a fairly new home and with it’s newness I assumed that our floors would be level for the most part.  Uneven and un-level floors are expected in older homes, but not so much in newer homes.  At least that is what I thought until I discovered the really poor job the concrete guys did on the main floor of our home.  We live in a split level and the only part that is poured concrete has multiple uneven areas.

One of the worst areas is in our half bath, which I didn’t realize until I went to place my new again bookshelf in the corner of that bathroom.  There is actually a ridge in the floor along the wall that creates a 1/4 drop off before it smooths out.  It sits  along the edge of the wall and the linoleum helped to disguise it, so we never noticed it until I set the bookshelf into place.  This was how the bookshelf looked for a couple of weeks after I put my  fancy leveling block in place.

IMG_8668Nice, right?  Well, after a couple of weeks of seeing that little piece of wood every time I entered the bathroom it was time to visit the hardware store and see what options were available.  After a little searching, I discovered these guys.

self leveling padsI liked these guys for several reasons…inexpensive (around $3),  self-leveling, no drilling required and easy to install.  Having never used them before I was curious if the “self-leveling” feature was to good to be true, but for $3 it was worth a try.  The other options available involved drilling and I was more than a little worried that the old wood in the bookshelf just might split if I went that route.

IMG_8671Super easy to install, just peel and stick.  The instructions for these particular felt pads said they would self-level up to a 3/8″ inch difference.  I put two since the leg sort of wraps around the side of the book shelf and figured it couldn’t hurt to double up the surface area of the pad.

leveled bookshelfTa-da!  The little pads worked.  This picture was taken with the level on the top shelf of the bookshelf and it is sitting perfectly level.  It’s been a few weeks and nothing has changed.


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