If you follow me on my Instagram Stories, you know that I’ve been working hard on my laundry room/mudroom over the past several days. It’s still not finished, but it’s well on the way and I thought I would share the details of what I’m doing and show you the progress. As point of reference, here is how the room looked before…
…and I use the word “room” very loosely. This is a small space that’s basically a hallway, closet, utility sink, and a place for the washer and dryer. My mom pointed out that it’s bigger than her laundry room, which is just a hallway with a washer and dryer in it, but it’s smaller than a lot of the mudroom/laundry rooms that you’re seeing in suburban family homes these days.
Despite it being a little tight when folding clothes, I love this space. I am throughly enjoying having a utility sink off the kitchen, just around the corner from my studio. With all of the painting I do, of one sort or another, it’s nice to have a dedicated sink to wash my brushes. I also like not having to schlep to the basement to do laundry.
Originally, I wasn’t planning on doing much beyond painting to this space, but my wheels started turning as I was working on the butler’s pantry. The bead board was easy to work with and install. And, I thought, and bead board would look fitting and pretty amazing in a laundry room. I talked myself into it and bought the materials.
As I thought about how I wanted to install it, I remembered an inn I saw online a few years ago – the Inn at Little Pond Farm. I was smitten with the woodwork used throughout the home. I decided to install my bead board in a similar fashion, running horizontally except for the top portion of the wall.
Not only do I like the unique look and the horizontal lines will visually lengthen the room, but it is a design that’s easier to install, because it reduces the rip cuts along the ceiling. “Ripping” a board is when you cut it along the length of the board, which is best done on a table saw. We sold our table saw when we moved, so I wanted to avoid long rip cuts, if I could. With this design, I could make most cuts on our miter/chop saw and the rest with a Dremel Saw Max and Multi-Max, which are small, not-as-intimidating, power tools.
I shared on Instagram that I’ve been working on this project by myself and some may have wondered why Jeff isn’t helping me. Well, he’s been on an adventure – backpacking in Iceland with a good friend for the last 10 days! It would’ve been great to have his help and expertise for this project and it certainly would’ve gone faster with two people working on it, but the fact that I was flying solo gave me a lot more flexibility to work while the kids were playing with friends, push dinner back a little later, stay up working on it after the boys were in bed, etc.
When I first started working on the wall, I was certain I would be able to get to a point and then I would get stuck, like at a light switch or a rip cut above a door frame, but I kept getting past hurdles and I was able to get it all done on my own!
Partway through the process, I decided to remove the laminate cabinet doors and back the cabinets with bead board, too. I was thinking through all sorts of options to make those laminate doors look less-laminate. I looked into cladding them in bead board or adding trim (both would prevent the doors from opening) or even replacing the doors with unfinished wood doors (too expensive), but removing them was free and maybe even more impactful.
It opens up the room visually and totally changes the look of those cabinets. The downside is I lose the closed storage to hide ugly things, but there wasn’t a lot stored in the cabinets and much of it could be relocated. For example, the carpet cleaning shampoo and attachments could be moved downstairs to the utility room with the carpet cleaner.
I’ll use the open storage for cleaning and gardening supplies along with some other pretty things that are currently behind closed cabinet & closet doors. If I was tight on storage, I would’ve just kept the doors and painted them, but I could afford to ditch the doors. Actually, I didn’t ditch them. They are in the basement utility room as well and I can always put them back on if ever I miss them.
So, once the woodwork was done (except about 4′ of trim that I needed to pick up to completely finish), I primed everything. The trim, the doors, the cabinets, the walls…everything. It was a lot of priming!
I love how the bead board looks around the transom window.
And, oh, what a difference it made to paint it all out in white.
It took me 2 1/2 days (off and on) to do the trim and about 3 hours to prime and then I was pooped the next day (Saturday). I did get going, though, and finished the caulking, installed and primed the last bit of trim, primed the corbels (for under the cabinets), and then started painting the doors (Coventry Gray) and cabinets (my custom Boxwood green). The walls and trim will all be painted in the same white as my kitchen cabinets and the trim in the rest of the house.
I will share more details in a follow-up post, including the tools I used, tips on installing this kind of bead board, paint colors and finishes, organizing the space, etc…