Friday, 21 February 2014

Making Space

Warning! Today's post is not really sewing, knitting or crochet related!  Instead I'm sharing one of my other passions with you and that's home organisation.  I know, it's a bit of a weird one, but for some reason I can't stop reading blogs on the subject and there's nothing I like better than a good before and after story!  So I'm going to attempt my own here, even though I don't have any before shots.

We are, for various reasons, currently renting a house until we can sell our own.  It came with a little conservatory on the back, overlooking the garden, which at first I thought was very nice indeed.  Unfortunately, it was more of a greenhouse last summer with those unbelievably long hot days.  I would open the sliding doors from the dining room and the wall of heat would hit you and practically take your breath away - it was so absolutely unbearable and totally useless for sitting in, even with doors and windows open.  Then, as soon as the hot weather went it seemed to turn itself into a freezer :-)

So, not much use as a conservatory, basically.  But the one thing I was desperate for was a utility space.  The kitchen is pretty small and there was no space for a dryer or any kind of laundry area at all.  Even finding a home for the ironing board was a challenge. Having a room which was unusable seemed such a ridiculous waste of space in such a small house, so .... the thinking cap went on ...

And I decided to turn the conservatory into a laundry room/utility area.  (The other half of this room is George's little pen and bed area, so it was already never going to be a proper conservatory). 

It was originally a very un-lovely shade of green so I got the brightest tin of pink paint and splashed it on.  Then I got the husband to put a (cheap) worktop across this wall and off I went to Ikea to stock up on laundry essentials (a 5 minute drive from the house, so you can imagine how often I "pop" in).

First were the laundry "bins" which were measured carefully before putting in the worktop, so that I got an extra shelf on the top.  The 2 big bins here are for wet washing in the bottom, it then goes into the dryer and comes out into the top big basket, ready for ironing.  Obviously, the baskets come out and so can be used for carrying washing (wet or dry) around the house, as necessary.

Of course, when the weather allows (i.e. not in the winter) I needed a drying rack but I was really not into the idea of folding, finger-trapping contraptions which take up so much space.  Again, Ikea had the answer ... a wall mounted rack.  This is absolutely fantastic as clothes are up out of the way and you can fit a surprising amount of stuff on there, especially if you use hangers for shirts and tops. I do have a wirlygig outside for summer drying, so this is really just for inter-season use and items that can't go in the dryer.

(These are dry, but you get the picture).  Next came the iron holder for £4!  Ingenious - and you can put the iron away when it's hot.

There is a plug point down behind the ironing board, so I can iron in here too and use the worktop as a folding space. 

The other end of the worktop is a dog feeding area and the baskets underneath house the dog towels and other dog-related stuff, as well as cleaning gear and laundry gear.

Sorted!  I'm really pleased with this neat and cheery laundry/utility area and its been working brilliantly all over the winter :-)  I think it's a good use of the space I had available and makes laundry much less of a chore as everything is to hand.

P.S.  I have no idea why these pictures do not pick up the details, they are absolutely fine on my camera - must be a BlogSpot thing.  Most annoying :-(

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