Friday, January 25, 2013

Small Space, Big Organization

Do you scour magazines or websites dreaming of an organized laundry room/closet combination? Frustrated with the elaborate large spaces that would cost a fortune? Secretly, you know an average person's closet isn't "that" organized and "that" neat! Recently I had the opportunity to remodel my laundry room/closet. I designed the layout of my 10'x10' room, a mere 100 square feet, into a highly organized, functional space. The

results make me happy every time I walk into the room. I hope my sharing it gives you inspiration!

The shelves are custom cut.
The double cabinets over the washer/dryer cost a mere $24 each at Home Depot. The left one stores detergent, fabric softener, bleach, dryer sheets etc. The right neatly hides our towels and wash cloths as the room is an extension of my master bath. I spaced the cabinets equally over the washer/dryer and custom fit two shelves in the middle. The bottom "trash" basket collects dryer sheets, dryer lint, new clothes tags, etc. The top one is empty waiting for a purpose. My laundry hamper (a simple large plastic bin) is out of sight in the tall cabinet leaving room for two shelves at the top for additional storage.

Working around the room from left to right, my husband's shoe shelves (with extra spacing for boots), his shirts and a t-shirt shelf. The drawer unit in the middle holds his jeans, shorts and favorite leather bag. He has two drawers for underwear and socks and I have the same. The other drawer is bonus space. The wall ends with my clothes and a storage shelf over them. Don't worry ladies I have more clothes in another closet. Although, during this project, I shrunk both of our clothing inventories by more than half. We haven't missed a thing! If you would like to do the same thing and don't know how you could part with anything, try Oprah's Reverse Hanger Test.

The final section organizes my t-shirts, shorts and shoes. That's right! That's all the shoes I own. I am the "Happy Handicap"! I came to terms with my shoe wearing dilemma some time ago. Now I don't even try to wear shoes that look like they might hurt my feet. I wrote a book about my experience complete with pictures if you're curious! Continuing on, the his/hers pants rack works perfectly with the extra hanging space above it.
The shelving, rods, professional cutting and hanging costs estimated at $1,000. If your husband has mastered a skill saw, the costs would be about half the amount.

Four conveniences in the room I love, love, love and love coming up...

My dream come true...a pocket door to save space!
Retractable belt/tie rack.
Retractable valet rod for freshly pressed items.
A re-purposed cedar chest as a closet bench.

 The only thing I want in this room that I don't have is a wall-mounted, enclosed ironing board. I want a full size which I can't find. If you know where to get one, please tell me! I'm still using my old ironing board which gets the job done. I hate to iron! Do you? The thing I'm proudest of in this photo is my new Rowenta Pro Master! She's a hoss! Best iron ever, steams magnificently! I got her for a bargain - $45 at kitchen tools outlet store.

A place for everything and everything in it's place is key to organization! Am I able to measure my success from this project? Absolutely! I took these pictures almost six months after the remodel. Everything is still neat, organized and I LOVE it! If I can do it, you can do it too!

Satisfied with myself,
The Happy Handicap
Leave me a comment and tell me what you've accomplished! I know you've done some things that will help me.  Can't wait to hear them.


  1. I am jealous! Your small spaces are bigger than my big spaces! I love your closets, though.

    1. Thanks! I'm almost 50 and just now getting into organizing things! I love it because it makes small look big even when it's not!