Simple DIY: Updated Shelving for a Small Laundry Room

Jul 3

Remember that time I said I wanted to update the laundry room shelving? Yes, this time back in May of 2017? Woof. Life gets busy.

Well, good news my friends – Over the last year I did make little strides until ultimately it was completed last week. Yay! I demo’d the shelving, patched and painted, and finally one night, after the kids were tucked into bed, I added the new shelving. It happened in phases…with very long breaks in between. But it happened! Anyhow, this is the case with most of my own home projects – they get done when I have a free moment and typically under the cloak of darkness.


But let’s start at the beginning, shall we? We’re taking it wayyyyy back. Back to when I moved here in 2013 with those tall front loaders…youchie….

Still can’t believe those barely fit under the cabinets. Mere cm’s to spare. This set-up wasn’t going to last. I couldn’t reach the cabinets to get anything. I sold the set and bought something with a smaller footprint…

This helped quite a bit, but the laundry room needed some life. We spend way too much time in a laundry room – let’s make it nice and give it a little life…

In April of 2014, on a limited budget, I updated the decor and got the cabinets organized a bit better…

But those cabinets were still driving me nuts. It was impossible to get into the cabinets and couldn’t see what was on the top shelves – which meant I wasn’t accessing them or making use of them. Additionally, the diy folding table the previous owner added was great, but when it was down, it was difficult to access the sink in the back corner…

In all honesty, I didn’t need a folding table anyway. I use the top of the washer and dryer to sort / fold clothing. Or I fold on the couch. Then I bring the piles to their designated bedrooms. This is the case with small spaces. Sometimes going simple is just the better route.

End of story is I wanted to demo the cabinets, the folding table and a few other random wall solutions. One afternoon the cabinets came down…

The following evening I demo’d the rest of the items…

Then I patched and painted (until 1am). Who needs a ladder when you can stand on a washer?…

I knew exactly the type of shelving I wanted to add and the containment as well. Couldn’t wait to place my own order with The Container Store to get this baby signed sealed and delivered.


If you have a small laundry room like me, this is an amazing update. It’s low-cost and looks pretty, but I promise you will also be able to see and access everything. And that makes all the difference. Even though the previous closed cabinetry went to the ceiling and had lots of storage, I had no idea what was up there and couldn’t see it. It also made the space feel smaller and darker. This open shelving changed everything. Not an exaggeration. All of my cleaning supplies, rags, laundry products, vacuum accessories and more are tucked away here – easy to grab with my little step stool and it’s all labeled beautifully…

( shelving | white handled bins )

All I have to do is grab a bin or basket and then pop it back into place.

My wall space is about 4′ high by 5′ wide. I designed the bottom shelf to be a solid decor shelf on purpose. This gave me the ability to display my pretty Laundress products and have dryer sheets tucked into a pretty open-topped basket. And yes, that top loading washer door opens ALL THE WAY. I’m a space planner, people – no detail, measurement or thought is left undone. Trust me, I’m that crazy…

( white washed bin | wicker baskets )

The 3 upper shelves are ventilated with a white wood fascia piece mounted on the shelf-front to help it all blend together…

( white handled bins | Laundress products )

TCS recently added a great elfa product that covers the hanging standards. This elevates the look by hiding those holes. I don’t mind the holes in a garage, but inside your home it’s nice to cover those for a cleaner appearance…

( cover )

Elfa shelving is super easy to install. If you’ve been reading the blog for a few years, you know I use this product for a lot of clients and their spaces. That’s because it works, but it’s easy to install and update over time. And love that they are constantly updating the components to make it appear a bit more custom / built-in.

These are my favorite bins and baskets…and you’ve probably seen these around here a lot too…

Like most families, we come and go from home via the garage door. This view makes me so happy when I come home…

But especially happy when I don’t see a dirty laundry pile sitting here – ha!

If you’re interested in updating your laundry room shelving, here’s the sources used in my space. Be sure to buy the shelving on sale, not at full price. The next sale should be coming in August…

The paint color I used in this space is Silver Drop by Behr. It was the same color originally painted in 2013, just updated the walls with a fresh coat.

If you’re wondering what my basket categories are:









Really so excited how the space turned out. Exactly as I envisioned. It is a huge improvement and love how much brighter and open the space is. Let me know if you do this yourself!!

Back soon guys!



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comments +

  1. Kim says:

    This is great! Thanks for listing the basket details too! Believe it or not, sometimes categorizing things is the hardest for me, so this is so helpful.

  2. Jessica says:

    Looks great! So happy you are a Behr Silver Drop fan too!

  3. Crystal says:

    Thank you! Helps a ton.

  4. Tricia says:

    Nicely organized, well done, the hyacinth baskets are great. I am going to pick some up, I just put up Elfa shelving in my utility/laundry room. I love Elfa, I still have the shelving in my kitchen that I installed 10 years ago. The product is durable and versatile and will probably last a life time. BTW Elfa is on sale now, 30% off.

    • Samantha says:

      Thank you so much! Sounds like you have a great plan set up! Yes, the sale is on through end of February…my books are slammed because of it – yay!!! Can’t wait to dig in and share more!!


  5. Shannon says:

    This is exactly what I’ve been looking for. Do you keep hampers in here or are those in each person’s room? I’ve done both and not sure which I prefer. Also, do you have a hanging area? I hang most all tops as they come out of the dryer. Thanks for your tips!

    • Samantha says:

      There was only room for a couple baskets – not a true hamper. And no hanging space either – just too tight a space. I no longer live here but it was a tight space and I made it work for us as long as possible.


  6. Natalie Wvans says:

    What size of the white containers did you use on these shelves? Medium?

  7. Debbie says:

    How deep are your shelves?

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