Small laundry room ideas – 15 ways to maximize both style and storage

Experts share their small laundry room tips for an organized space that's good-looking, too...

small laundry room ideas wall hooks, blue wood clad walls and terracotta floor tiles by Ca'Pietra
(Image credit: Ca'Pietra)

As a space that's mainly used for day-to-day chores, small laundry room ideas may at first sound less than exciting. However, this room truly works best for you when you consider style as well as function, and when it's beautifully organized and clutter-free.This is an area that keeps everyday life ticking, with all sorts of things, from muddy boots to piles of washing, finding their way into the laundry room.

Whether you want to make the space feel bigger, cozier, chicer or simply more efficient, we've rounded up a host of top tips to make your small laundry room more appealing below...

Small laundry room ideas for a chic and clutter-free space

1. Don't be afraid to go to the dark side

small laundry room ideas embrace dark colors Little Greene

(Image credit: Little Greene)

Just because your laundry room is small doesn't mean you can't make a style statement. In fact, creating a chic ambiance in a room that is mainly functional will help to make lighter work of the laundry experience.

'Light colors are not the only option for a small laundry room,' says Ruth Mottershead, Creative Director at Little Greene.  'I love to embrace a small room and create a dramatic and intimate interior with intense cocooning colors, such as our Dark Brunswick Green.'

2. Install a mini hanging rail in any nook

Small laundry room ideas mini hanging rail Tiffany Leigh Design

(Image credit: Tiffany Leigh Design)

Make the most of every inch of space in a small laundry room with inventive ideas for any nooks and crannies that would otherwise be wasted.

Tiffany Leigh, of Tiffany Leigh Design, got creative with this small amount of wall space between a wall cabinet and the sink by installing a mini hanging rail. It's great extra laundry room storage and ideal for children's clothes, or other small items like tea towels and cloths.

Hanging rails are a great idea for any laundry room, and can be placed along any spare wall space, or even underneath open shelving for extra organizational points.

3. Let there be light

small laundry room ideas light hues, natural light by Neptune

(Image credit: Neptune)

'You can transform your small laundry room in seconds by considering just a few simple things: colour, laundry room lighting ideas and storage,' says George Miller, Home Designer at Neptune Fulham. 

'In a small room, we would usually try and encourage as much light as possible, so making the most of windows during the day, and spotlights to create as much light in the room as you can.'

Adding texture like marble countertops and wood cladding also helps to create a cozy and stylish finish. 

4. Keep cabinets and walls neutral

small laundry room ideas white neutral color palette with brass finishes by Marie Flanigan Interiors

(Image credit: Marie Flanigan/Julie Soefer)

Neptune's George Miller also suggests sticking to a neutral palette to create some tranquility in a room that's essentially for working in.

He comments: 'Painting the walls and cabinetry in neutral shades will create a calming space and, hopefully, make the space feel a little bigger. Paired with laundry baskets for additional storage, this creates a stylish and homely space for cleaning up and keeping organized.'

Add a dark floor type to anchor the space and give it depth.

5. Hide appliances behind stylish door fronts

small laundry room ideas hidden appliances by Lindye Galloway

(Image credit: Lindye Galloway Design/Chad Mellon)

Keep a small laundry room looking pretty by hiding appliances behind chic door fronts.  The Lindye Galloway Design Studio shows here how you can use stylish Shaker-style laundry room cabinet ideas to create a nook for your washing machine and tumble dryer, so when they're not in use the room looks more inviting.

small laundry room ideas with appliances hidden behind cupboard doors by Lindye Galloway

(Image credit: Lindye Galloway Design /Chad Mellon)

Lindye Galloway, Founder of the Lindye Galloway Studio + Shop, says: 'Love these little hideaway doors we designed so you can keep the laundry room looking pretty no matter how many loads are ahead!'

6. Invest in wall-hung foldable drying racks

small laundry room ideas wall hung drying rack by Garden Trading

(Image credit: Garden Trading)

Keep clutter off the floor and utilize wall space with a collapsible wall-hung dryer. The stylish example from Garden Trading above has three height options and folds flat after use to conveniently conserve space.

Pop linens, tea towels, shirts or tops on the rail to dry and keep other areas clutter-free at the same time.

7. Hang a drying rack from the ceiling

small laundry room ideas patterned floor and ceiling drying rack by Carpetright

(Image credit: Carpetright)

The key to maximizing a small laundry room? Make the most of every bit of available space. By hanging a drying rack the entire length of the ceiling, you can air your clothes without taking up radiator or floor space. It's an efficient way to utilize space that would otherwise go unused.

8. Use multiple styles of storage for optimum efficiency

small laundry room ideas multiple styles of storage in white room by Marie Flanigan

(Image credit: Marie Flanigan/Julie Soefer)

Organizing a small utility room? 'The key is plenty of different storage options for all the items you need,' says Claire Wilks, Senior Buyer at Garden Trading, 'including built-in cabinets, glass bottles for detergents, shelving for stacking, a hanging rail, and a set of baskets and trays to have everything neatly grouped together.'

The perfectly pretty - and masterfully organized - laundry room by Marie Flanigan Interiors above shows how you can utilize multiple styles of storage, from rails to laundry baskets, to keep the space clean and tidy.

9. Make the most of wall space with floor-to-ceiling cabinets

small laundry room ideas pink cabinets, printed wallpaper and hanging rail by Maestri Studio

(Image credit: Maestri Studio)

The more storage ideas you can have in a small laundry room the better. A great way to maximize wall space? Floor-to-ceiling cupboards. 

Even if you can only fit one tall unit alongside your other cabinets, the space will be ultra-handy for storing everything from fabric conditioner to pegs and laundered linens. Any taller items, like mops or an ironing board, can also be put away in a full-height cupboard.

If you're looking to store lots of smaller items in baskets and boxes, you can add multiple shelves inside a tall cupboard; or perhaps you'd find a hanging rail for shirts and other items more useful.

10. Try modular shelving for flexible storage

small laundry room ideas modular shelving by String Furniture

(Image credit: String Furniture)

'Laundry rooms have become a desirable must-have at home but are often compact,' says Peter Erlandsson, Co-Owner of String Furniture

'Modular, open shelving ideas provide a great way to fit storage into small spaces. The best thing about modular furniture is that it really can be installed anywhere. There are only two things you need to consider. 

'The first is making sure your shelving is deep and tall enough to store your belongings but narrow enough that it doesn’t compromise your precious square-footage. 

'The second is making sure you use a mix of open shelving and cabinet styles to create a display unit that is flexible enough to hide the things you don’t want on show. 

'You can design a modular shelving system to suit any space with a range of shelving sizes. To make your utility feel larger, there is an age-old doctrine of using light colors on walls to make your home look bigger. This is true, and your shelves need not detract from this.'

'Using minimal materials, these modular shelving units also offer a pared-back Scandi-style look for a clean-lined finish.

11. Stack your washing machine on top of the tumble dryer

laundry room storage ideas ceiling drying rack laundry maid by deVOL

(Image credit: deVOL)

If you're short on square footage but have reasonably high ceilings, try stacking your tumble dryer on top of your washing machine to free up more space.

Finish by adding rustic decor and a vintage-style pulley for a modern farmhouse feel. A touch of marble will always add a dash of decadence to make doing the laundry a little more pleasurable – and this is one of the prettiest laundry room sink ideas we've seen.

12. Get creative with beautiful fabric

small laundry room ideas with curtain storage and green cabinets by Kim Amrstrong

(Image credit: Kim Armstrong Interior Design/Michael Hunter)

For a softer take on storage and a stylish way to add print, color, and texture, make like the French and try using pleated curtains to keep products hidden.

'In a small laundry room, sometimes you have to get creative with storage solutions,' says Kim Armstrong, Principal Designer, and Owner of Kim Armstrong Interior Design

'In this space, the green laundry room cabinet ideas add a fun pop of color and the skirted sink is not only functional for hiding plumbing and supplies, but also beautiful.'

13. Play with pattern to add depth and interest to your small laundry room

small laundry room ideas printed tiles, dark cabinets, hanging rail by Kim Armstrong Interior Design

(Image credit: Kim Armstrong Interior Design/Michael Hunter)

'Laundry rooms are a great place to bring in pattern and movement,' explains Kim Armstrong. 'Laundry rooms are typically pretty simple, and don’t have a lot of layers of interest.  Cabinets, floor, washer dryer, sometimes countertops.  

'So, when you can bring in some pattern to this relatively small space, that pattern just adds so much interest and depth to the room.'

She continues: 'The addition of pattern brings the room to life. Pattern can be added just about anywhere;  it can be added to walls, or pattern tile on the floors, and even to the ceiling!  

'I would say, have fun in this space and push your limits of comfort just a little.  It will pay off in big ways.'

14. Utilize hooks on any spare wall space

small laundry room ideas blue wood paneling, wall hooks and terracotta floor tiling by Ca'Pietra

(Image credit: Ca'Pietra)

Wall hooks are an easy way to keep things organized in a small laundry room, which can easily get overwhelmed and cluttered.

Whether you use a peg rail or separate, singular hooks, they can be used for hanging brushes, peg bags, cloths, and even coats if your utility is doubling up as a mudroom idea too.

15. Create corner shelves to maximize storage

small laundry room ideas white room with corner shelves by Maestri Studio

(Image credit: Maestri Studio/Jennifer McNeil Baker)

Fitted corner shelves are an innovative way to utilize every bit of spare space, and will offer a much-needed extra storage spot for anything from decorative items to necessities like washing powder.

Bring the outside in with a pretty trailing plant, or pop your glass storage jars here for easy access to all your essentials.

How can I maximise my tiny laundry room?

small laundry room ideas white room with hanging rail by Tiffany Leigh Design

(Image credit: Tiffany Leigh Design)

'Maximize space in your small laundry room by efficiently using all of the available areas, that includes wall and floor space,' says Marie Flanigan. 

'From stackable washers and dryers to hanging rods, collapsible shelving and drying racks, it’s important to consider layout when looking to maximize efficiency.'

She adds: 'Also, consider your day-to-day function and what thoughtful additions would benefit your lifestyle.'

How much space is needed for a small laundry room?

small laundry room ideas with dark cabinets and terracotta floor tiles by Ca'Pietra

(Image credit: Ca Pietra)

'Even a small space, can pack a punch,' says Marie Flanigan. 'However, the only thing you really need to account for is your washer and dryer! 

'If possible, include baskets to hold detergents and other necessities to keep the small space tidy. Hooks are also a space-saver that add great laundry room function.'

Where do you put your laundry in a small house?

small laundry room ideas with washing machine in kitchen pantry, by Marie Flanigan

(Image credit: Marie Flanigan/Julie Soefer)

Where your laundry room is located can often depend on your home’s layout. 

'Unless you’re building a new home, most homes typically have a designated laundry room,' says Marie Flanigan. 'Sometimes, the laundry room is on the second floor of the home where the bedrooms and bathrooms are located. 

'As a mother of three, I often like the laundry room near the back entrance of the home, making it a great drop zone for kids’ clothes and layers.'

And Tiffany Leigh adds: 'If your house is small, consider simply using a closet for your laundry space.'

The picture above, by Marie Flanigan Interiors, shows how you can do just that – by using a walk-in pantry cupboard to stack your washer and dryer; there's even a clever extra shelf for baskets to store washing tablets and other necessities.

Ruth Doherty is a lifestyle journalist based in London. An experienced freelance digital writer and editor, she is known for covering everything from travel and interiors to fashion and beauty. She regularly contributes to Livingetc, Ideal Home and Homes & Gardens, as well as titles like Prima and Red. Outside of work, her biggest loves are endless cups of tea, almond croissants, shopping for clothes she doesn’t need, and booking holidays she does.