This laundry room makeover turned my drab and dreary laundry room into the laundry room of my dreams. I’m not quite sure if my favorite part is the fun geometric painted wall, the new shelving with beautiful decor, the newly painted cabinets or new tiled countertop or the fact that I did it all myself. If you’re considering a laundry room makeover that includes painting your cabinets, I would highly recommend taking a local class, if you can find one. Cabinets are very expensive to replace, so you definitely need to know what you’re doing – do it wrong and you’ll be spending a lot of money to fix it.
Painting my Laundry Room Cabinets
When we bought our house it came loaded with reddish-brown stained cabinets and I can’t stand them. But like I said, cabinets are expensive to replace so I lived with them for years. Then I couldn’t take it anyone. Cabinet painting was becoming a popular thing, so I decided to look into it. You can certainly hire a number of businesses to re-paint them for you or you can DIY it, like I did. With most DIY projects, I teach myself how to do it through trial and error. But I wasn’t willing to risk the error part of trial-ing so I decided to look into cabinet painting classes. I found one offered locally by Restyle Junkie. While the class was expensive, it was well worth it to understand the proper way to paint cabinets.
My original plan was to use the laundry room cabinets as practice for tackling the kitchen cabinets but after finishing this project, I don’t think I will ever paint cabinets again. I love how they turned out and I am proud of the job I did, but it was sooo much work. With about 5 times as many cabinets in the kitchen, that would be a big nope, nuh uh, nada, no way.
For the free-standing cabinets on the other wall, I sanded those down, re-stained them grey and added a whitewash to the top. You’ll see those in the “wall painting” section.
Tiling the Countertop and Backsplash
It’s hard to say which design feature I disliked more, the cabinet color or the ugly laminate countertop the builder chose to install. I decided to remove the laminate countertop and replace it with ceramic tile, extending the backsplash all the way up the wall. I tiled it myself, with the experience I gained from re-tiling 4 fireplaces in our home.
Ok, I really love this. I’ve decided the new tile is my favorite part of my laundry room makeover.
Painting the Laundry Room Walls
What’s the first thing you notice about these before and after pictures? Are you wondering why I took that white door and painted it a cream color? Guess what? I didn’t! That’s the same, untouched door and trim in both pictures. And no, it’s not a result of a difference in lighting when I took the picture.
Painting the walls white and adding that colorful geometric pattern on the wall with the door, created a different contrast which was now causing my door and trim to look creamy, ugh! The door was always a cream color, but when up against a darker tan wall, cream looks white in comparison. But now paint the surrounding walls white and that cream colored door shows its true color. This is why holding one of those tiny paint sample cards up against a wall and trying to decide if you like the color, is futile. The color looks different depending on what color it is next to.
The cream door and trim had to go! So I was back to “cabinet” painting…the thing I said I would not do again. While not technically a cabinet, it’s the exact same process to paint a door. I decided to paint the trim white and the door the same light grey I used on the upper cabinets. Here is how it looks repainted. Ahhh so much better.
Choosing Paint Colors and Sheen
For 3 of the walls I simply painted them with a white gloss paint. I went with white to brighten up the space and I chose a gloss sheen to reflect light. Typically I use an eggshell sheen in all of the rooms, but the laundry room does not have a window for natural light and I really wanted it to be bright in there. While white paint alone will really brighten a room, choosing a gloss finish will reflect light even more.
While I wanted a bright laundry room, I also wanted a fun laundry room. Laundry is so anti-fun, that I wanted to add something unexpectedly joyful to the room. I decided to create an accent wall composed of colorful geometric shapes. To create the look I simply started by painting the wall white, then used painters tape to outline various shapes. Once the taping was complete I painted a different color inside of each shape. Pull the tape away and voila!
Adding New Shelves to my Laundry Room
That wire shelf just had to go. While functional it was not fun to look at. So I decided to replace it with 2 wooden shelves that I built myself and stained the same color as the free-standing cabinets on the opposite wall. I also added 3 baskets below the shelves to hold mesh laundry bags and swiffer dusters.
I got rid of the unsightly detergent & fabric softener containers & replaced them with glass dispensers which look so much nicer!
Fun Laundry Room Decor
I used my Cricut to create a Laundry Schedule sign that is totally me. I do not iron. In fact, I laugh in the face of ironing. So it was perfect! For countertop decor, I purchased clothespins and used them to fill an old glass bottle that was from my husband’s father’s early laboratory days.
While not necessarily “decor”, I want to point out something else from that picture. Notice the electrical outlet and cover? I hand painted those to match the tile and I’m really happy with how it turned out. The cream colored outlet just wasn’t doing it for me. Kind of like that cream colored door.
I decided to stick with the clothespin decor theme and purchased a giant clothespin to use as a towel holder.
Then I added a laundry bag to the end of the free-standing cabinets to hold old bath towels that get used for miscellaneous purposes.
If you’re not quite ready to do a full makeover like I did, slap on a fresh coat of pain. You’ll be amazed at how much just that one little change that can lift your spirits.
I’m refreshing rooms faster than I can write blog posts about them! Stay tuned and check out my other makeovers as I add them to our Room Refresh.