Organizing the Home-Laundry Room

by Alaina on December 5, 2011

This is usually the time of year that I do the “spring” cleaning around the home. When it is spring time here and the weather starts turning warm, I really can’t stand being inside long enough to accomplish much. When it gets cold and I am forced to start spending more time indoors, that is when the clutter and junk starts to get to me. This year though I have decided to go through each section of our home and reorganize as well as clean. I am not naturally an organized person but our six person family lives in a 1400 square foot home and I am finding I am forced to become more organized to keep our family functioning well. I started with our laundry room and at the time, was not planning on turning this in to a blog post so I have no “before”picture to compare the results to but you can believe me that it was a big cluttered mess. We do not have a linen closet in our home or a coat closet so the laundry room is actually our linen closet/coat closet/laundry/storage room. Previously I had a coat rack on the right wall and we started by clearing out all the old coats we no longer used and donating them. I cleaned out the inside and the top of the cabinets. I then went through all of the linens and got rid of everything we really do not use or stuff that was old. Then I took all of the bed linens and folded the set up together and put them inside their matching pillow cases, that is what you see on the top shelf. The second shelf I used two storage baskets that I had in another room. One stores all the beach/pool towels and the other stores all the extra linens that did not belong with any of the sets. The little one in the middle has extra pillow cases. The three baskets on the bottom shelf are new ones that I bought at Target. I used black contact paper and a chalk marker to make labels with the three older kids names on them.I used to load all the clothes from the dryer in to my laundry basket and would fold and make piles for each child on the floor of my bedroom. Leaving a big mess until I sent the kids to go put their piles of clothes away. With this new system, I take clothes out of the dryer which is immediately left of this shelf, fold them and put them in the basket of who it belongs to. Each Friday the kids go and get their basket and put their clothes away. SO much easier and so much less mess. I did not come up with the idea of the baskets on my own. Somewhere on Pinterest and I would give credit where credit is due but I can’t remember where I found it.

In front of this shelving unit is where our coats where previously hanging. After thinning down the coats as much as possible, I had my husband install a shelf above the coats. I added three plastic bins I bought at Home Depot to the shelf. The other reason why my laundry room was always so cluttered was because I am constantly making piles of clothes to donate, piles to pass down to friends, piles to keep and go out to our bins in the garage. I labeled these three plastic bins with the black contact paper again and wrote, “give” “keep” and “donate” on them. This way when something comes out of laundry and I know it is now too small I put it right in the one it needs to go in and when they get full I can empty the bins by filling up a bag to go to Goodwill, etc. I remember where I stole this idea from! The Complete Guide to Imperfect Homemaking suggested having three baskets for mending, hand wash items and donating items. I actually have a basket in my bedroom where I keep items I need to mend and I have a separate section of my hamper where hand wash items go so I kind of took the idea and changed it around to fit my needs as you can yours as well.

On the wall to the left where our washer and dryer are I moved three baskets that were previously on the shelf where I have the kids baskets now. One holds old rags for cleaning, one extra cleaning supplies and the small one holds flashlights, batteries and some other misc.items. In order to put some of the cleaning supplies I use the most within easy reach I bought something at Home depot that is supposed to be for installing on the inside of cabinet doors to hold cleaning supplies but instead I attached them to the wall. The rest of the shelf above just holds extra blankets. This is my first try at truly organizing a space this way and thinking about every things having a place and every place having a purpose. I would love to hear any tips from all of you about things you have done to reorganize your laundry room to make it more functional. I ammoving on to the pantry next so wish me luck!

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