Need laundry advice!

January 2, 2016


We are renovating our small laundry. It's 1.6x2.0m, under the stairs so a sloping roof in parts, with a door to the toilet.

Currently it has both a laundry trough and a hand basin for the toilet.

We want to put a tall cupboard on the back, with a bench over the top of the washing maching and a drop in laundry trough. Thinking high gloss white cupboards with a grey-ish bench top (and possibly some new lighting!). We want to re-tile and re pain while we are at it.

My main question is, what do I do with this hand basin? Leave it? Replace it? Remove it completely? Given that access to the downstairs toilet is through the laundry I would like something that looks nice and neat (I had considered elfa shelving. But I would rather hide things in a cupboard!)

Sorry about the poor photos - I struggled in the small room!

Comments (15)

  • LouieT

    i nyssa57, could you have a set of bifold doors in front of the laundry section plus add the bench over the washing machine & do a drop in tub?

    This will allow you to add shelving such as the Elfa system but behind doors that fold back to the wall.

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    The vanity seems to be in good condition so maybe you could just add to it with some tall matching timber or grey open shelves & dress it up with nice decor items & low maintenance plants like succulents that don't mind indoors.

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  • KK1000
    I have laundry similar size. I f you need storage and who doesn't I would put a machine under the bench and a nice sink in one corner so you can wash your hands and maybe do a bit of washing if you have to. Under the sink you can have a large pull out draw for dirty washing and couple deep draws for storage. Above the bench I would install some basic kitchen cabinets. On the opposite side get rid of the basin and add floor to ceiling storage , it doesn't need to be very deep if there's no room, use the same colour doors as the rest of the cabinets or different it's up to you. For the bench use stone or composite and same on the splashback. That's just my contribution to your solution, don't do it on a budget, you will regret it later.
  • nyssa57
    Thanks for the ideas.
    The bi fold doors won't work because of the ceiling angle.
    Originally I thought we would leave the vanity there and replace it later if wanted, but that was before we decided to re tile!! I was also thinking a tall cabinet there instead.
  • J
    If I understand the photos I'd remove the hand sink. Like the other suggestions I'd place the machine under bench etc and plan to have the laundry looking good. A tall storage unit on the left and open shelves to the angles wall. A nice laundry sink, for example a porcelain one, would do the job for all.
  • PRO
    elaina + co interiors

    I would leave the separate hand basin. It's nice to have the 2 uses of the space defined. A small wall hung basin with a gorgeous mirror would take up less space and provide a clean space to freshen up, especially if you are using the laundry sink for washing. There is a huge amount of wall space above the washing machine, I would be taking full advantage with slightly deeper shelves to the ceiling. I would also consider getting an electrician to move power points and looking at options to incorporate the kitty litter into a under bench cupboard, Pinterest has some great ideas.

  • j9rob
    I would definitely remove the hand basin and have one sink for two uses. I have a similar laundry, though a bit longer and have a ceramic sink like the one in this houzz picture below. I find it works for both washing hands and laundry.

    Choose a splashback tile with a bit of decorative interest so the space seems less like a laundry and a bit more like a powder room.


    Also, wall mount the dryer to create more cupboard space.


    I also think a front loading machine would help create bench space. Wall mounting the dryer is an option too.
  • Ben Staples

    Like j9rob, we installed a ceramic Butler's type sink (I think ours was described as a Belfast sink) for our laundry trough and used it as a hand basin too. Big space saver, we even bathed our newborn daughter in it until about 10 weeks old. Our laundry was about 1.5x2.0m in size. We also used excess porcelain floor tiles from our kitchen renovation for the splashback to save a few dollars.

  • denisreno

    I would definitely get the washing machine off the floor to give you a bit more space. You might want to build in some good storage as the shelves you have don't seem to be doing the job. If you can afford it, build them in under that sloping roof to take advantage of the extra height and also have a door at the bottom which would hide the cat litter tray if that is something that is in use all the time. Don't bother if it's just left there when it's not being used, but I'd get that out of sight somewhere.

  • kooky_karen

    If that was my laundry, I would be putting in a bench with inset sink along that wall still allowing room for the kitty litter. Maybe you could buy a box with a flap so that everyone doesn't have to see what the cat has deposited. There would be cupboards above bench.

    The hand basin would go and a large cupboard would replace it - one that had space for brooms, mops, etc on one side and shelves on the other.

  • PRO
    Spaces AS Designed

    In situations like these, it depends what you normally use your laundry sink for. If you don't really need a 'laundry' tub as such, I usually recommend that my clients get a nice, comfortable and good-looking bathroom basin that they feel will suit their needs, and install a kitchen sink mixer, instead of a normal basin tap, so that the tap can be moved if you need to use the basin for larger items. Then add a hand towel ring and nice hand-soap dispenser and you have a dual purpose washing area.

    I always try to install washing machines and dryers in tower units, but not at the cost of benchspace - so it will really depend on the room layout (which I can't quite determine from your photos). Neat overhead storage is a must. Underbench pull-out clothes baskets and broom cabinets are always good, if you have the room.

    All the best!

  • nyssa57

    Very belated update:

    We moved the washing machine from the back wall to the side wall (beside the basin in the original pics). We went with one large sink - small for a laundry tub but it did the job (I think I could soak one queen size sheet in it.) If I ever wanted to soak anything larger I would get a big plastic tub and do that.

    Cat litter went in cabinet under sink, we put a cat flap in the door, and we purchased a spare door that we put on when we sold the house.

    New floor, new paint, new cabinets. Very pleased with the results. See the link for the full details.


    View from doorway:

    Heres the before and after of the toilet. Although I know that floors and paint makes all the difference, its one thing to know it and another to see it (for me, anyway).

  • oklouise

    congratulations and love the idea of the concealed kitty litter inside the laundry cabinet with the cat flap in the door, genius!!

  • bigreader
    Good job. Always great when we get to see the afters.
  • PRO
    Spaces AS Designed

    Well done! Looks beautiful & functional.

  • PRO
    Aus Joinery Kitchens Pty Ltd

    Gorgeous update. well done