Store it. Store it good: laundry/butler’s/appliance pantry and linen closet revealish

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Seriously?  You made it past that title?

Hey–if I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a 1,000 times: infrastructure is sexy!

Let’s start with the laundry/appliance garage/butler’s pantry.  If you want the full 411 on the plans for this room, check out the Via Corona’s Secret Weapon post. Otherwise, here are the Cliffs Notes version.

Warning:  I had a heck of a time trying to photograph this room.  Size and light were not my friends.

The laundry room inhabits the space between the kitchen and the garage.

As the drawing shows, originally there was a door between the kitchen and the laundry with two steps down to the garage that took up the entire wall (Exit) going to the garage.

We moved the entryway to the garage and added a fire door because, you know, safety!  We also turned the hot water heater so that we could move access out of the laundry and into the garage (the original can be seen in the lower left of the plans above).  This bought us some more wall space.  Finally, we moved the washer and dryer outlets so that the appliances could be stacked.

New tile.  It sure was hard to give up that old linoleum.  This floor makes me chuckle.  We used a really great tile store called Cosmos for nearly all of our tile needs.  However, Cosmos is up in Hollywood and has normal business hours which means at least an hour’s drive and a weekend trip.  We got tired of doing that and so just went down to Home Depot and picked these out.  I love Home Depot.

The original plans included an actual door between the kitchen and this room.  However we had to lose it when the cabinetry guys realized we wouldn’t be able to open the ovens with the door frame.  Oops.  Like every place else in this house, the space is tight so losing the door opened things up.  It’s also great incentive to keep the space tidy.

As soon as the paint was dry on the baseboards, TD and I built the storage using Pax units from Ikea.  If you are playing along at home, the Via Corona Pax unit tally is currently at 10.  We’re pretty sure we’ve exceeded our lifetime allotment and would prefer to never have to build another one again.

When I originally mapped out the space, I knew fitting two of the 29″ units alongside the stacked washer and dryer was going to be a squeaker.  But, with some good math and a little luck, the three units fit side-by side with one-and-a-half inches to spare.  Smooth.

I organized the space so that all of the heavy small appliances could be pulled off the shelves at waist-level (for me).  This way I don’t have to pull-down or pick-up the heavier items like the standing mixer or food processor.  We also put the microwave in this space on a pull-out shelf.  There is more to the microwave story but TD won’t let me tell it because it makes him cry (let’s just say this isn’t the original microwave that we bought for the space).

The PAX units we’ve used are nearly 23 inches deep which allows for ample storage of serving platters, big bowls, footed dishes and my not insignificant collection of vases, hurricane lanterns, candles and such.  Please ignore the fact that they haven’t finished framing the door and sheet-rocking the walls on garage side.

The wall opposite houses our mail and communications command center.  The idea is to keep mail and lists out of sight.  The hooks below are for wet dishtowels (again, to keep them out of view) and below (not pictured) are the kitty dishes.  All the bits of blue tape are spots that need touch-ups.

I’m still playing with the organization of the room but its been pretty incredible to have everything in one place.

On to the linen closets.

Our last house did not have a linen closet.  This means I had linens and towels stashed all over the house like nuts.  Just call me old linen squirrel.  While it feels a little Betty Crocker, the prospect of a designated space for towels, sheets and blankets was embarassingly exciting to me.

Of the hundreds of photos I’ve taken, this was the “best” I could find of the linen closets in their original.  Some of you might recall, this is where, after we’d owned the place for a couple of weeks, we discovered a pair of men’s boxers.

And then TD tried to sell them.

At first we naively thought we’d just have the doors replaced but keep the existing structure.  Interestingly, it would have cost more to have new doors made than to replace the whole unit.

So out they went. Along with the carpet and low-ceilings.

The builder used four pre-fabricated linen cabinets with the doors oriented so that they look like two.

Rather than faking-out a wall above the installed cabinets, we left it open and added baskets for texture and more storage.  Those who know me won’t be surprised that I’ve decided those baskets are also most likely spider attractants and now I’m super scared to store things in them.

Movable shelves in the upper cabinets allowed me to customize fit for sheets and blankets.

While I’m pretty sure these babies could store the linens for an entire household, the master bath has its own storage.  Which leaves me with a couple of empty shelves.  I know, nature, especially in the form of storage, abhors a vacuum and sooner than I’d like, these cabinets will be filled.  But for now, they’re orderly and neat.

The drawers are genius–I mean the people who design these things must be experts or something.  I can actually fit my entire collection of pillow cases and shams organized by size.

I can’t believe I just said that out loud.

Lots of storage for cloth napkins as well.

Please don’t tell my mom I haven’t lined the drawers yet…she’ll report me to the WASP police.

Their fines are hefty and we need our last few pennies to finish up Via Corona.


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