Laundry Room : One Room Challenge – Week 1

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comI’m excited to announce, I’ll be participating in my second One Room Challenge as a guest blogger. You can see my first ORC right here, where Emmett and I transformed our one and only bathroom! This time around we’ll be tackling the laundry room. I know what you’re thinking… “the kitchen isn’t even finished”. That’s a valid point and hopefully we’ll wrap up that GIANT project soon, but my reasoning in diving straight right into the laundry room is because the spaces are connected. We’re using lots of the same materials in the laundry room and ultimately, it’s less expensive and faster to finish that space than the kitchen at this point. While I’m saving up for dining room furniture and kitchen accessories, I thought we might as well jump on board the laundry project… so that’s the plan! Click through for the details, design plan, and before images. Let’s step inside the icky space as it currently is… 

If you found me through the ORC site, hi there! I’m Sarah, a designer located in Salt Lake City, UT. You can see my current home renovation here, as well as my previous Ohio home here. Thanks for reading!

F L O O R    P L A N

To give you a little reminder of what our floor plan currently looks like… I’ll copy the entire footprint of the home below.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 -

As you can see from the floor plan above, the laundry room, kitchen, and eat-in dining area open into one another and need to look and feel cohesive.

B E F O R E    I M A G E S

Although we’ve been working on the kitchen for months, we have yet to touch the laundry room. Seriously- it is one big eyesore.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comHere’s what it looked like upon moving in (I pulled the images directly from the real estate listing)… fun times, right? YUCK.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comCan we take a minute and talk about that WEIRD planter wall. What in the what is that and who thought it was a good idea?! There was literally musty soil sitting inside that thing when we moved in.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comI’m honestly a little embarrassed to show you what it currently looks like because not much has changed, but I’ll copy in those images below…

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comThe space has kind of turned into the dog room and place where tools and supplies accumulate (in a very unorderly manner).

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comUpon moving in, we did purchase a stackable washer and dryer, as well as replace the back door (although I never got around to painting it).

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 -

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comWe also recently widened the doorway, and added height to the opening between the kitchen and laundry room, in addition to removing the weird planter / pony wall. I wanted some separation between our dining area and the dog area. Something about having that totally opened up really grossed me out, and the half wall looked dated.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comEverything else in the space looks exactly as it did the day we moved in- pretty nasty, stained, and shabby. Emmett also accidentally went a little demo crazy and now there’s a chunk missing from the drywall… so we’ve been living with that for a few months (shown below). I swear, our friends must think we’re nuts when they come over and see things like this.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 -

F U N C T I O N A L    M U S T – H A V E S

Although it’s not a huge space (it’s comparable in size to our bathroom), we need this room to work very hard for us.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comOnce we’re finished- it will be one of the most functional rooms in the entire house. I’ll copy the “must-have” list below:

  • Laundry Units – Washer & dryer (that pretty much goes without saying- it is a LAUNDRY room)
  • Closed Storage – In addition to laundry supplies, we store A LOT of unsightly items in the tiny space: dog food, cleaning supplies, outdoor equipment, extra paint, etc.
  • Dog Crates – We’re obviously a dog-friendly family and our boys aren’t allowed to roam free throughout the house when we’re not home… therefore, dog crates are a top priority.
  • Entryway – This is the back entry to our home and it’s used more frequently than the front entry. We open and close the back door multiple times each day to let the dogs outside, as well as access our backyard. Therefore, we need a place to hang coats, dog leashes, kick off shoes, etc. It sort of doubles as a “mudroom” and makes us miss our old one.
  • Counter Space – Given this room gets used for a variety of things, including laundry, we also need some countertop space to fold clothes, mix detergent, scrub stains, prep dog food, etc. Right now, there is nowhere to sit things and it cramps our productivity.
  • Crawl Space Access – This is an annoying must-have because it’s an eyesore (shown below), but it’s definitely a necessity in keeping our home up-to-code. The crawl space access door is located in the laundry room. It has to remain in the same location for permit purposes, but our goal is to find a way to better disguise it. PS… no matter how much I scrub the linoleum floor it always looks like this- stained and disgusting.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comThat might not seem like a lengthy wishlist, but trust me when I say it’s a tall order for a tiny space… especially given the size of our largest dog. Finn is a 100 pound giant schnauzer and therefore, his dog crate will need to be pretty sizable.

D E S I G N    P L A N

Onto the fun part… the design plan! As I previously mentioned, this space shares a lot of matching elements and similarities with the kitchen, since they are open concept to one another. Here’s what I’m thinking for the laundry room:

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comThe concept is pretty straightforward… wall-to-wall cabinetry, a space for the laundry units to slide in, a built-in dog crate, counter space, updated floor tile, a tiled backsplash, updated light fixtures, and a fresh coat of paint. Here’s to hoping it’s as easy as that sounds.


I do have some concerns going into my second One Room Challenge. Check out my 3 biggest worries below:

  • Timing – This is my biggest concern. We’re also doing custom cabinetry (to match the kitchen) in the laundry room and are just now placing the order (due to budget). Anything custom takes A LOT of time and our kitchen lead-time took a month longer than expected. There’s honestly a good chance something will be delayed and that could mean not completing the challenge in time. I’m a very scheduled, detail oriented person… and it would be hard for me to swallow an unfinished project- especially in a “challenge” setting.
  • The Dog Crate – I’m still designing the custom dog crate element of the cabinetry and it’s proving challenging. Given the size and weight of our big guy, most of the latches available to fit the cabinetry don’t meet the heavy duty specs we need. Johnny Cash, our smaller dog, is also a chewer… so finding a material that is durable and resistant to chewing has also been a headache. This part of the space HAS to be functional, designed with longevity in mind, while remaining safe for the pets.
  • Shooting – If we make it to the deadline, I’m also a bit worried about shooting the space. It’s pretty tight and dark- which will definitely be a challenge. Eventually we’d like to add a solar tube to bring some natural light into the space, but our roof will need replaced this summer and we’ll have to wait until that occurs… which unfortunately won’t be in time for the ORC reveal. Here’s to hoping my camera skills are up to par. Ha! I’m trying to force that to the back of my brain and worry about it when the time comes.

Laundry Room : One Room Challenge - Week 1 - roomfortuesday.comTo wrap things up, Emmett and I are eager to get started. We definitely have some hurdles ahead, and it will certainly get worse before it gets better (as it has the entire home renovation)… but I’m excited we’re taking the initiative to tackle this space. It’s so important to our kitchen design and at a stage where we’re nearly burnt out (after three months of the nonstop kitchen reno), we’re making it happen anyway. Ready to follow along?!

To see the other guest designer spaces in the challenge… click the logo below!

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  1. Monica Benavidez says:

    This is going to be a huge transformation! Excited to follow along. :)

    1. Thanks so much, Monica!

  2. We have 3 little guys that aren’t allowed to roam our home when we aren’t home either. Their crates are in our laundry room and I sit our laundry baskets on them, lol! I can’t wait to see the transformation!

    1. That’s a smart idea… hampers on top! I wish we were going to have space for a built-in hamper- they’re currently living in our bedroom closets.

  3. Have you thought about replacing the exterior door with a half-life door in order to get some natural light into the space?

    1. No, the backdoor is new, so I’ll just be painting that. We’ll be adding solar tubes (essentially skylights) once we do the roof this summer or fall to add more natural light.

      1. Where is your door from!?

  4. Jessica Devlin says:

    I’ve been following you on instagram and so excited to see how this turns out!

    1. Thank you so much Jessica!! xox

  5. Tee at Beauteeful Living says:

    Laundry makeovers are so useful! Our laundry is in our basement connected to our boiler. Wish it was a bigger space or I’d revamp it too. Good luck with updating this space! I can’t wait to see how that dog crate turns out!

    1. Thank you Tee! At our previous home, the laundry was also in the basement… so this is a fun change. xo

  6. Love the new design. And you’ll love your solar tube once you get them. We don’t have the kind with the built-in light, but I keep wanting to turn the light off because it’s so bright. Excited for you!

    1. Thanks so much, Becky! I’m excited for the solar tube, but not for redoing the roof, ha. Talk about EXPENSIVE. Yikes! xox

  7. Hey Miss Sarah! So excited to follow along on this amazing renovation! Love your plan and space. It’s going to be so awesome when it’s all said and done. …Oh yea….you got this. :-) ~~ Susie from The Chelsea Project

    1. Thank you so much, Susie! Excited to cheer each other on again. xo

  8. Hi Sarah, I am so thankful I stumbled across your blog (via Pinterest). You are truly an inspiration and I admire your style and design choices in every way. I am a new home owner in the very early conception phase of renovating and can really appreciate the numerous challenges of design logistics. I am especially curious about the laundry room design plan rendering – can you share the app or software you use to achieve the realistic view? Thanks!

    1. Aww, Cheryl! You made my day. Thanks so much, and congratulations on your new house! That specific rendering was done in Photoshop. Maybe I’ll try to come up with a post about the tools / software I use?

  9. I can’t wait to follow along with your remodel! Looks like lots to do but fun to start with a clean slate!

    1. Thanks, Ruthie! We’re all about the clean slate. After starting demo, it seems like everything needed to be replaced anyway! Nothing like a rotten subfloor to kick start the project. Haha! xo

  10. Love the design plan for this space!

  11. Of course I can’t wait to see your kitchen! Based upon that room, I know your laundry room space is going to be so good! Sounds like you’ll be extremely busy the next 6 weeks with both projects!!

    1. We’re definitely busier than ever, but I hope it will all be worth it! Thanks for following along, Leslie! xox

  12. Jordana @WhiteCabana says:

    Wow – this is going to be a great makeover! I like your design plan. The wall of cabinetry is going to be so useful!

    1. Thanks so much, Jordana! We need all the store we can get. xo

  13. I love your design plan, it will be a beautiful space.

  14. I love your plans for this space! I can’t wait to see how to make a dog crate pretty.

    1. We desperately needed a better solution for the dog crates, so that’s probably what I’m most excited about!

  15. Jewel Marlowe says:

    It’s going to be a huge change! I look forward to following along. You’ve intrigued me with the kennels

    1. Thanks, Jewel! I’m really excited to have a designated places for the pups.

  16. Tracey / Porch Daydreamer says:

    It is so fun to see you incorporate a dog crate into this space! This design trend is not going anywhere and the space looks like it will be amazing. I was up with you at midnight posting too, so you know you have some virtual support those late nights!

    1. I can’t wait to follow along and cheer each other on Tracey! Those late nights are crazy. Haha!

  17. Vicki and Jenn 2 Bees in a Pod says:

    You will love your laundry room when this is all over. We feel your pain about the dark photos. Our ORC room is the guest bathroom that has zero windows and no natural light LOL. We know that you are up to the challenge and will create an amazing space!

    1. Thanks so much you two! We’ll suffer through shooting our dark spaces together ;) xo

  18. Cathy | the Grit and Polish says:

    I am SO impressed…a kitchen AND a mudroom! You guys are busy! And I really can’t wait to see this space come together, especially with the kitchen too. It’s going to be beautiful

    1. Busy and probably a little insane. I’m going to lose my mind. So much for the clean house! Argh.

  19. You’ve got a diamond in the rough here. I know it is going to be functional and beautiful when you are finished. Your worries are my worries too. It doesn’t help that I seem to be drawn to our worst rooms to shoot for this challenge. If it’s cramped and tiny, I choose it. :)

  20. This is going to be quite a beautiful transformation! Definitely a swan hidden under ugly duckling feathers!

  21. Wow I think this will look amazing! Love your plans and you definitely have a challenge before you, but those make the best reveals. BTW program did you use for the drawing?

    1. Thank you, Tiffany! That specific rendering was completed in Photoshop.

  22. As always I’m impressed with your design choices! I’m very much looking forward to seeing how you transform the space. Also not sure if you recall but I was the one with the grout issue the other day. I decided to go ahead and purchase the one you linked. I’m not much of a risk taker and I couldn’t find a good color match. So it will be worth putting the project off for a week for the right color. Thanks again for sharing your sources.

    1. Thanks Traci! So excited you went with the Pecan grout! It’s going to look great. How did tiling go? Or is that happening this weekend? I can’t remember. Good luck! xo

      1. Thanks so much! It happened this weekend and I am extremely pleased. The tile is amazing! Can’t wait for the grout. Lol! Thanks again, you and Emmet are the absolute best!

  23. This is going to be such a fun room to follow along on the transformation!! Can’t wait to see how you tackle it! :)

  24. So excited to see this unfolding! The moodboard is gorgeous. I’m joining in with ORC for the first time :)

    1. Thanks, Jude! So happy you’re participating this time around- it’s a lot of fun :)

  25. Sarah,

    I am so excited to follow your progress!!! We are making over our laundry room for the challenge as well! Best of luck to you!!!

  26. tim@designmaze says:

    nice plan!! that trap door … but your floor will be amazing! looking forward to seeing it coming together in 6 weeks.

  27. Brittany Goldwyn says:

    This is going to be great. And don’t be embarrassed about what it looks like now. Have you seen the before pictures of my yard? We were those trashy neighbors with a terrible yard until now.

  28. Carol@BlueskyatHome says:

    Sarah, nice to meet you here at ORC. We redid our laundry room last summer so I can’t wait to see how yours turns out. It looks like a large space to work with.

  29. Lovely plan – it’s going to be beautiful very soon!

  30. Jessica | Petal + Ply says:

    Love this plan so much! That tile!! Be still my heart!

  31. I am so very envious of the space you have here! The plan is beautiful and I can’t wait to see the progress each week! BTW, Finn is too cute! :)

    1. Thanks, Lisa! Finn says thanks too :) haha! xox

  32. Sarah I love your plans for this room! It’s going to be beautiful!

  33. Hi, I just browsed through the finished Laundry room from the link in your current blog post. It is a lovely space. Could you let me know the dimensions of that room, especially the wall where you have the washer/dryer to the tall cabinet. Thank you so much.

    1. Thank you! That space was around 6 feet x 8 feet.