Friday, July 1, 2011

Laundry En Counter




I know it may seem like I've been dragging this laundry room thing out for awhile... well because I sort of have. With a limited budget you have to plan for projects to take awhile. But anyways! Remember in my previous post about the laundry room where I showed you my new washer and dryer set? They didn't look as great as they could have just sitting alone in the laundry room. That and it made it seem very dark with the darker shade on the walls and the darker red of the units themselves. Since space in a manufactured home like mine is so incredibly limited we knew that we were going to have to do something to take advantage of the real estate above the washer and dryer.

Here is what we were working with initially:



After we decided to really launch into the reno here is what it looked like without the counter and machines:



So off to Lowe's we went! 


We picked up a huge piece of particle board (which was extremely heavy too) as well as some 1"x4" to use as a support for the counter along the back. Have I ever mentioned that Justin is rather talented? My washer and dryer had the plug ins on a separate wall then the hose so we couldn't just cut one notch out... we had to cut about 4. 



Here's the counter in place! Justin didn't like that it looked like just a piece of particle board so he decided that we needed to add a piece of molding to the front to give it a more finished look. Once again he is a genius. This is what it looked like before we painted it...

And here is a after close up with the molding painted. I must say particle board soaks up paint like a lot a lot. But it looks good! It's also removable in case we need to get to the back of the units to work on them or clean etc.



Here's the up to this point finished look of the whole section! Remember to the right is the weird bump out area that I added the "built in" desk storage.


I just can't get over how great it looks! The counter top is great for folding or ironing and it helps keep all the laundry activities in the same place. I like to stand in my kitchen and just stare at the amazingness that is now my laundry room. It's almost complete! Just one more shelf to be installed and some more tweeking and adding of accessories. Oh it is pretty amazing!

Even though it has been six years since I've installed this counter top I must admit it has been a real game changer for the space and has held up really well. Here are the things I would recommend keeping in mind for a counter like this:

  1. Add some sort of support between the machines for the counter top. Otherwise after time it rests right on the machines which is not necessarily good for them. Plus it keeps the washer from creeping too close to the dryer.
  2. Make sure you have your dryer's vent hose well attached! We learned that the hard way and it was a serious challenge to get back there to reattach it. It also can cause the particle board to swell in places because of the additional moisture being kicked up towards the counter.
  3. I would probably by a prefab counter top that matched the kitchen next time and have it cut to size. It'd make it feel like a more cohesive space.
Overall, this is still one of my favorite projects that I've ever done! I think it looks great, functions very well, and has been a big favorite of people as they come in for showings while the house is on the market. 

Any tips or suggestions you would tell people building a counter top?








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