I don't have a large luxurious mud/laundry room in my house. It was one of those things I wasn't crazy about when we bought the home, but I was willing to live with. The problem with having a teeny closet to store your washer and dryer in is that there is not much space for storage, and with it being right in the kitchen a lot of stuff tends to just haphazardly get thrown in there.
So, I've been really wanting to organize my home, and it started in the fall with my medicine cabinet, but with the Holidays I got thrown off track. I've been reading Beneath My Heart, and her and her sister who blogs are doing a series "Organize your heart and home." She inspired me this week to go ahead and clean out that laundry closet.
I've been meaning to pull out the washer and dryer for a while now. We had a massive washing machine leak several months back that flooded our den. We ended up having to pull out all the carpet and get new carpet. I had this sinking feeling that there also may be water damage behind my washer and dryer, so it was time to pull it out and inspect it while I was cleaning back there. I searched the internet for inspiration on storage and ideas and ran across this from Fine Home Building:
So, I started with this mess that you see here (that is my little one eating breakfast. She is such a cutie pie):
I found about $2 worth of coins while cleaning back there. I also found 2 Euros.
I also found water damage in the drywall, nothing massive but it is going to have to be fixed in the spring. I was planning on putting a coat of paint in there today just to make it look cleaner, but since we will be fixing water damage soon, I decided not to waste my time on it. Another day for that.
So, I wiped the walls and shelf, wiped down the washer and dryer and then put it back in place.
I then made a list of what I needed to buy to help me organize. I didn't have a large budget for this, only about $20, but again, we plan to redo this entire area someday, and for now, I just need a cheap storage solution to get me through until that day comes. So with my list in hand and two little ones in tow, I headed out to Dollar Tree and Goodwill, hoping to find my storage solutions.
I found some old contact paper that I believe was bought at the dollar store several years back to cover my shelf. I say "contact" paper lightly. This stuff did NOT want to stick. (I'll just say this, the contact paper MAY be stapled to the underside of my shelf. I'm not proud of this but hey, it works).
I got some bins and hooks at the dollar store and some mesh bags to hold dirty dish towels (which normally just get piled on top of the dryer for about a week). My total so far was ($5).
I still needed a solution for my brooms and mops and something for the dog bowls. I went to Goodwill and found a nice basket ($1) to hold all my reusable shopping bags, but nothing for the dog bowls and brooms. I didn't want to just hang them on a hook because they would move all over the place when I opened and shut the door, so I needed something that would hold it by the rod to keep it sturdy.
I went shopping to four stores that evening and found nothing to hold the brooms. I did get a packet of racks to hang on the opposite door to hold cleaning products, paper sacks and other stuff. I paid $6 for them at Wal-Mart.
I got grounded by a snow day and it took me a few days to get back out. I ended up buying a rack at Bed Bath and Beyond to hold them all. The cost of this was $15.99. I had a 20% off coupon and it ended up coming to $13.00.
I was only TOTALLY bummed to find out this thing did NOT hold my Swiffer Sweeper very well. Turned out to NOT be what I was looking for at all. I needed something more industrial and heavy duty so I went to Lowes and found EXACTLY what I'd been looking for AND it was $4 cheaper! Guess I'll be trekking back to BBB to return the other one.
So, here it is completely finished! Remember that HORRID before photo? Well, take a look at how GREAT it looks now!