Welcome to the next installment in our series on organizing your home. Today, we are moving on to the laundry area.
Laundry areas can vary greatly, from a small closet to a large room dedicated to your laundry. But no matter how large or small, the most important thing is that your laundry area functions well and is a pleasure to be in.
Tackle the Laundry First
Even though laundry is a chore, it’s also a blessing. Laundry means having clothes to wear and care for, places you go to wear those clothes. You might think it’s crazy, but I genuinely enjoy doing my laundry and caring for my clothes.
Before we talk about anything else, let’s tackle the possible elephant in the room: do you have piles of laundry backed up from weeks and even months of procrastination? Start there. This is one time when I think it is well worth investing in some professional help to get caught up. Or, if you are able, load up a car, get $50.00 worth of quarters, find the cleanest laundromat around, and just go for it. The great thing about laundromats is being able to get it all done at once.
When I was a single, working mom, I once had to take 13 loads to the laundromat to get all of my bedding and other laundry done so I could get myself back to zero. It happens to us all. While you are there waiting for those clothes to wash and dry, create a laundry routine for yourself so you don’t ever have to do this again. Trust me, you will never be more motivated to do that.
Clean Up the Laundry Area
Now that the laundry has been tackled, let’s move on the laundry room.
If you have read our other organizing tips, you might guess that one of the first things I’m going to write is to keep it clean. I can’t really tell you why, but for some reason lots of us seem to hold on to things like old detergent bottles or boxes, balls of lint from the dryer, and other various debris that piles up on our washers and dryers.
So start with a good clean out and get rid of everything that’s no longer usable. Next, wipe everything down. Lint gets everywhere in a laundry room, and most people have small spills of detergent and fabric softener causing sticky messes here and there. A clean slate is just the thing to get the laundry room sorted.
Spruce Up the Laundry Area
Next, paint it a nice, cheery color. Something that makes you smile. Try to make is as light and airy as possible. When you look it at, it should make you feel like you’re standing in the fresh grass, with a breeze blowing through white sheets hanging on a line.
Next, put up something fun. I have a framed print with a cute saying in mine, and it is just a hall closet. But when I open those doors, I smile. That closet is bright, cheerful, and makes me happy.
Create a Place For Everything
Do you have storage in that area? If not, start by putting up some shelves or even a couple of cabinets. There are options for any budget out there, from some simple plastic shelves to custom cabinetry. It doesn’t really matter, as long as it provides solutions for you.
Have a place to keep things like socks that have lost their mates (where on earth do those things go), use baskets to corral supplies, and keep a container for your lint. I have an old, empty laundry pod container that I use for lint.
Because there are so many types of laundry areas, it isn’t easy to give a lot of specific direction. But keeping it organized and clean is always a good idea. Decide exactly what will go where, and stick to it. Make it cheerful and inviting.
Change Your Mindset
Finally, change how you look at laundry. Don’t see it as a chore to dread. That is how it piles up. Instead, see your clothing as a blessing. Take pleasure in caring for beautiful things. If you don’t enjoy your clothes, you might want to consider taking a look at your wardrobe. Laundry care is self-care.
In fact, caring for and keeping our homes organized is way of caring for ourselves and our families. Make sure to not just read these articles, but try to implement them to the extent that you can. If you haven’t started yet, the laundry room might be the perfect place. It’s much simpler than most other areas of our homes, we are usually less attached to how it looks, and more willing to take a chance doing something fun with it because we aren’t exactly entertaining in there.
The important thing is that the laundry area is organized and encourages you to keep your clothing clean, neat, and organized.