How to design your laundry with interior designer Anna-Carin McNamara

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How to design your laundry with interior designer Anna-Carin McNamara


More often than not, laundries are grouped into the ‘functional’ rather than ‘aesthetic’ category – languishing neglected when it comes to design elements. But when you think about it, the laundry is a space we need to use weekly, maybe even daily, so why not make the experience more enjoyable?

Anna-Carin McNamara

Sydney-based Swedish interior designer Anna-Carin McNamara has partnered with Electrolux to share her top laundry design tips – with any budget or size in mind.

Create a vision
My first and perhaps most vital step to designing the laundry is to have a clear vision, measure up and then have it drawn up accurately. Don’t be afraid to try as many variations as you can think of on paper! This accuracy will be critical when it comes to functional layouts and ventilation.

Choose your washing machine wisely
The quintessential addition to every laundry is the washing machine. When choosing your star appliance, consider household size and habits. When I chose my washing machine, I knew I wanted to optimise efficiency considering I have three grown kids who live at home and do their own washing on allocated days. I use the Electrolux 7.5kg/4.5kg Washer Dryer Combo as it ticks all the boxes.

Plan every square millimetre
When planning a laundry you have to be realistic and maximise every millimetre. I describe my newly renovated laundry as tiny, functional and bright. The washing machine is just under 600mm which in a tiny space is super important. To further optimise space you can also add mirrors.

Follow the rules for functionality
There are five design rules I recommend following when designing your laundry – consider bench space for washing baskets, shelves for washing products, a swivel tap so that a soaking bucket can be used and a hanging rack to dry shirts. If your space allows it, I also advise elevating your washing machine and dryer for easy load and unload.

Experiment with the design
After considering functionality, it’s important to also consider how aesthetics play a role in elevating the laundry from the plain, simple room it was once known as. Add something beautiful – a plant, a wall light, an artwork, that gives the space some personality. Although it can quickly become overwhelming so stick to three – one for the floor, one for the walls and one for the joinery.

Itemise your budget
I recommend a minimum of $8,000 for a laundry redesign, while a bigger budget of $25,000 will allow for higher quality materials and fixtures, with more custom joinery. My personal laundry redesign took six weeks with a budget of $15,000. Keep in mind the costliest aspect is always the labour. Even though materials in terms of design may cost a bit more, I always tend to choose ones that I find beautiful because you actually don’t need that much.

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