Laundry room ideas – banish those washday blues with the perfect space

Get on top of the family’s washing with a hard-working laundry room, whatever size you’re working with

Laundry room with metro tiling, marble worktops and styled shelving
(Image credit: Future PLC/James French)

Ever feel that your home might be overrun by washing? Perhaps your answer lies in finding the right laundry room ideas to create a dedicated area or room for your washing. Even if you haven’t got much space to play with there are plenty of small changes you can make that will help get on top of the laundry. From hiding appliances behind closed doors to having ample storage for washday essentials, open shelving to easy-clean surfaces, laundry rooms are becoming a must-have rather than a dream-have on property wish-lists.

When thinking of laundry room ideas, make a shortlist of what you really need. Are you looking for just a space for laundry, or more utility room ideas? Deciding on the main purpose for your space will ensure it works its hardest for you. With the practicalities sorted, next comes the fun part – laundry room décor ideas. From industrial to Scandi, country to coastal, you can give your laundry room a look of its own, thanks to the colour scheme you choose and those finishing touches.

‘Not only is a utility or laundry a practical asset, but it’s also a space where homeowners can showcase their individual sense of style,' says Nikhita Sejpal, marketing manager at AluSplash. 'If you want the space to be an extension of your kitchen, create flow by matching the same look throughout and using the same range of cabinets, tiles and flooring. Streamline the scheme with a coordinating soft-toned splashback for a look that exudes a modern edge.'

Laundry room ideas

Discover laundry room ideas to make the most of your space and make washdays a breeze from now on.

1. Make it a space you love

Neutral laundry room with washing machine, tumble dryer and Belfast sink

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Washing and drying can be a chore, so make your laundry room ideas create a place you like spending time in. Yes, it needs to be practical, but there’s nothing stopping it looking pretty, rustic or minimal, reflecting the rest of your home. Try a floating shelf above your appliances for a utility room shelving idea, where you can keep essentials like clothes pegs in baskets, while providing space for spare vases and tableware.

A large farmhouse sink is a great choice for a laundry room, providing plenty of space to wash mud from sports kit, leave clothes to soak or pop flowers before arranging. Choose an arched tap that’s easy to turn on and off – even with elbows – if you have wet or dirty hands.

2. Find a place for everything

Laundry room with sage green metro tiled splash back, open shelving and selection of brushes

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dominic Blackmore)

Avoid your laundry room ideas from becoming a dumping ground, with plenty of utility room storage ideas. Enamelware always looks great – and often has space to label or comes pre-labelled. Open shelving means it’s easy to return things to their space, while make use of the walls too, with hooks for the ironing board, hand towel and brush rack.

Alsways try and leave a little unaccounted for space, in case you manage to get your hands on a heated clothes airer, or whatever the must-have gadget is next year.

3. Give your laundry room a look

Laundry room with wooden Sheila's Maid, Belfast sink, washing machine and tumble dryer

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Looking to country utility room ideas is the perfect choice for a user-friendly laundry room, with enamelware, a pulley clothes airer and even bunting easy style fixes. Look for a worktop offcut if your laundry room budget is tight, especially if you have a sink to work around. 

A wall sticker is a fun way to remind everyone of your laundry room’s purpose – a room dedicated to dealing with the ‘family wash’! Choose a soft sage green for a clean but inviting laundry room colour scheme.

4. Combine a laundry room with a pantry

Laundry room with brick walls painted dark grey, terracotta and black tiled flooring and open storage

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Always dreamt of having a laundry room and a walk-in pantry? Open shelves on the walls above your appliances and sink can create the look of a pantry with the practicality of a laundry space – they are an easy utility room storage idea win. Try painting brickwork a dark charcoal grey, echoing terracotta and slate mix tiles on the floor, which combined lend a utilitarian feel. 

Expose pipework and cables in trunking are part of the vibe and make any plumbing or electrical work cheaper as there’s no need to conceal in walls and replaster over the top.

5. Create a bootility

Laundry room with dark green cabinetry and built in storage

(Image credit: Future PLC)

How about a ‘bootility’ – a laundry/utility using boot room ideas to add plenty of storage space for outdoor gear? Just plan in as much utility room storage as possible, providing space for integrated appliances under the countertops, teamed with shelves and space to sit down to lace up boots. 

Try a dark spruce green colour for to paint units and shelves, which when teamed with natural wood and marble, reflects the outdoors – it’s the perfect combination for a family that loves nature and a great choice for colourful laundry room ideas.

6. Plan in lots of worktop space

Neutral laundry room with stone floor and metro tiled splashback

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Just as cupboard space will help keep your laundry free from clutter, plenty of worktop space is a must, providing space to sort laundry, folding washing to Marie Kondo levels. Choose a practical composite finish, taking the worktop to upstand height, making it easy to clean too.

When choosing a tap for your laundry sink, go for a mixer tap with a high swan neck or tall ‘body’ if opting for something more contemporary, both of which will allow you to fill up a bucket easily.

7. Style it personal

Laundry room with metro tiling, marble worktops and styled shelving

(Image credit: Future PLC/Rachael Smith)

Your laundry room ideas needn’t be bland; it’s a great space for extending your home’s style. Use open shelves to display pictures (the kids’ school ones perhaps…) along with your collection of vases and trays, interspersed with a few houseplants – such a display will help detract from the rather practical looking white goods.

Looking to spruce up your laundry room? Try painting the unit doors a mushroom or cappuccino colour, replacing tired worktop with a length of marble – if budget allows. Metro tiles in white always look smart – go for grey grout to highlight the brick pattern.

8. Create a bridge of units

Laundry room with neutral cabinetry, washing machine and metro tiled splashback

(Image credit: Future PLC/Katie Lee)

Stay away from utility room design mistakes with your laundry room ideas by making the most of wall space with smaller units placed above the sink area, while others go floor-to-ceiling. Store lesser-used items up high, such as spare detergent, vases and candles.

Keep to a simple laundry room colour palette idea, with shades of grey and taupe, which lend a modern country feel. A wood-effect laminate worktop makes for a practical surface that won’t mark or stain easily, while a picture ledge provides handy storage for smaller laundry essentials.

9. Use a statement wallpaper

Laundry room with dark grey cabinetry, Belfast sink, wall panelling and wallpaper

(Image credit: Future PLC/James French)

Create a laundry room with a pattern punch, wallpapering one wall – this leaf design lends a modern country look to grey painted units. If you haven’t got integrated appliances, try a curtain in a heavy-weight fabric to hide your washing machine. 

A jute rug underfoot, wicker baskets and wooden chopping boards all give this space texture, while Shaker-style peg rail, with a shelf above, makes great use of the wall above the units for storage.

10. Utilise the space by the back door

White laundry room leading onto small bathroom

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Can you squeeze in laundry room ideas next to your back door, moving your washing machine and drier out of the kitchen? Having a separate space is especially useful in an open-plan kitchen-dining-living space as who wants to watch TV with the washing machine on spin?

Build a book-end worktop over your appliances – this involves taking the same worktop down the side, providing a neat finish. If your laundry room leads to your downstairs loo, then why not echo the materials used for a co-ordinated look?

What is usually in a laundry room?

‘Whatever the homeowner considers essential for laundering their clothes,’ says Jo Jackson, market product manager UK & Ireland at Fisher & Paykel. ‘Usually, a washing machine, clothes dryer, ironing board and a space to air clothes, as well as storage space for detergents and stain removers.’ It needs to be suited to your preferences and lifestyle though,

‘For those living in cities without outdoor space, this room will be vital for drying clothes, in contrast, those with gardens may dry their clothes outside in the summer months, placing less of an importance on consistent space for this.'

Make sure you’ve thought about the process of ‘doing the laundry’: do you sort clothes in your laundry room, leave things to soak if stained, or dry woollens laid out flat? Do you dry clothes on an airer or need space to do the ironing too? Once you’ve thought about the activity, then plan what’s needed and find a home for any bits required. Where will you store the airer when not in use? What about a bucket or detergent? The more planning you do, the more beneficial having a laundry room will be.

What’s the difference between a utility room and a laundry room?

‘A laundry room is solely a space for laundering and caring for clothes, whereas a utility room has a wider range of functions. On top of everything required to clean and wash clothes, a utility room is a multifunctional space which houses cleaning products and tools,’ says Jo from Fisher & Paykel. 

Think of your utility room as a multipurpose space, whereas laundry rooms tend to focus on purely on clothes management. Al Bruce, Founder of Olive & Barr, adds, ‘A utility room is an extension of the kitchen and offers extra space for things that wouldn’t have a place elsewhere in the home.’

Jennifer Morgan

Jennifer Morgan is an award-winning editor, writer and stylist, with over 25 years’ experience writing, styling and editing home interest magazines. Jennifer was the deputy editor of Ideal Home from 2008-2010, before launching Ideal Home’s sister title, Style at Home in 2010. Jennifer went on to launch several craft magazines and websites, before going freelance in 2016, with a client list that includes John Lewis, Dunlem and Nordic House. Today, she writes for Ideal Home, Real Homes, Waitrose, Woman & Home, Sainsbury’s Magazine and Homes & Gardens. But it was during lockdown that Jennifer realised her dream of publishing her own magazine – Simply Scandi.