Many modern laundries are now shrinking in size, with many doing a disappearing act altogether. If you don’t have space for a separate laundry or if you only have one or two square metres to squeeze one in, these clever design tricks will help you maximise every centimetre.
1. Combine your appliances
Regardless of whether you love them or loathe them, no-one can accuse these laundry appliances of being space guzzlers. Most washer-dryer combos accommodate smaller loads than washing machines. If you have a large family or can easily air-dry your laundry, you may be better off installing a standalone washing machine of similar size and using a retractable clothes line. If, however, you are short on drying space, these dual washer-dryer units can be a godsend.
2. Embrace sink inserts
Too often, the focus of our laundries lands solely on washing and drying. But what about the all-important bench space for those mountains of folding?
If your laundry is already on the small side, chances are your laundry bench space is too, and this is when sink inserts come in handy. These nifty designs fit snugly into most sinks and create extra bench space in a room where every bit counts.
Tip: Get your builder, stone mason or benchtop manufacturer to save the piece of bench cut out for your basin and convert it into a matching sink insert.
3. Make friends with front loaders
If you often have to do the folding on your kitchen bench or table, consider switching to front-loading appliances. ‘Why?!’ we hear top-loading devotees shriek. Because the tops of front-loading appliances can double up as bench space. Sitting front loaders directly on the floor – as opposed to stacking them on top of each other or opting for a wall-hung position – means the top of the appliances comfortably reach bench height.
Hidden ironing boards, which are concealed in your joinery, are the answer to many a question about where to stash this bulky beast. Some models swivel out and rotate back into your cabinetry, while others fold down from the inside of a cupboard. Whichever type you choose, you’ll thank yourself for not having to regularly wrestle a cumbersome ironing board in and out of a cupboard.
Most people find single-bowl laundry sinks are sufficient (it all depends on how you do your washing), and they take up much less space than their double-bowl brothers.
This set-up may not suit your requirements if you constantly need to soak garments. But if you use your laundry sink as a dumping ground for dirty clothes or cleaning products instead of actually turning on the taps most days, consider repurposing the valuable space occupied by your laundry sink and using your adjacent kitchen or bathroom sink instead.