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Clever DIY Laundry Room Cabinets & Shelving

Do you need help organizing your home? The laundry room is no exception. Adding DIY wall laundry cabinets and open shelving above your washer, dryer, and utility tub can really help declutter your space.

laundry room shelves and cabinets with black hardware.

Have a small laundry room? We will show you how we utilized the height of our room to fully add more laundry room storage.

*Disclosure: I only recommend products I would use myself and all opinions expressed here are our own. This post may contain affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission. Read our full privacy policy.

Factors To Consider For Your Laundry Storage Design

  • How tall should your cabinets be?
  • Do you want the cabinet to cover the whole wall?
  • Do you want to add a mix of shelving and cabinets?
  • What colors would like your cabinets to be?
  • Are you comfortable covering your water shut off?
  • How high do you want your cabinets to be hung?

What are the best laundry room cabinets?

Consider using the whole space above your washer and dryer. For us, that meant choosing to get two 30” x 36” height cabinets to fit our space above our washer and dryer. 

Wooden Hampton Bay Upper Stock Cabinets as DIY Laundry Room Storage.

Stock cabinets are a great way for you to get the height you want, but also a way to keep this DIY project pretty inexpensive. The quality of these cabinets is what you would expect.

You could spend a lot of money and get a custom-built laundry room. One day we may end up making our laundry room larger and we may reconfigure the whole space. But for now, this was the best option to keep this a budget laundry room storage idea.

Would you use these cabinets in a kitchen?

We do like the look. These Home Depot stock cabinets were perfect for our laundry room. However, we would not recommend these upper stock cabinets if you were using them in a kitchen or other high-traffic areas since parts are still made of particleboard.

Our Design

After the new washer arrived, I started to look at how to improve the functionality of our space. We debated about adding cabinets across the whole wall.

Before Laundry Room makeover with old cabinets and wire shelving
Our sad before laundry room

We had to factor in the utility tub that is next to our washer and dryer. Putting open shelving there would keep that space more open and accessible. We decided to keep cabinets above the washer and dryer and open shelving above our utility sink.

How To Paint Wooden Stock Cabinets

Full disclosure, I ordered a paint sprayer and totally wanted to try using it on this project. But I was using the same paint color on rollers for our bathroom vanity and oak railing makeover.

Therefore, I ended up just using brushes and foam rollers like I did when I painted bathroom vanity cabinets.

I do think that these cabinets would have probably turned out a little better if I had sprayed them. The cabinets were not nearly as forgiving as solid wood oak cabinets that I was also painting at the same time.

While these worked for our laundry room cabinets, I would say they are far from perfect. I may even end up having to sand a few areas and try to retouch some areas that seemed to take the paint inconsistently.

Recommended Supplies For Painting

How To Paint Laundry Room Cabinets And Shelving

1. Lightly sand the cabinets with extra-fine paper for any rough spots you see. The doors had some wood shavings or extra particles on them.

I did not think I needed to do this and I regret it. You can learn from my mistakes to get a smoother finish.

2. Wipe down the cabinets before priming with a damp rag.

3. Use a primer (we love SW latex primer) with a brush and foam roller to completely cover the areas you need. I did not prime and paint the parts of the cabinets that I knew would not show.

Priming laundry cabinets before painting

4. Once dry, start painting the first coat of enamel paint. Use a brush and a small roller.

5. Propping doors on 2 x 4s will make this easier for you. 

Painting Tip

Store your brush and roller in a Ziploc bag when you are not using them. This works as long as you are finishing your painting project in a timely manner.

6. Once they are dry, you are able to hang your cabinets.

Read & Watch More>>>>>>Step-by-Step Tutorial For Painting Cabinet Doors with A Brush and Foam Roller (With Video)

Recommended Supplies To Hang Laundry Cabinets

Before You Begin

Learn from our laundry cabinet hanging mistake

At first, my husband just assumed putting the cabinets all the way to the ceiling would be a great idea. Luckily, I was easily able to see that I did not like the current height before my father-in-law and husband did too much work.

Make sure that you are able to reach your items while leaning over your washer. I realized I wouldn’t be able to reach the top shelf or even a lot of the bottom shelf if they stayed that way. You don’t want to have to get a ladder out to reach most of your items.

How To Install Laundry Room Cabinets

1. Remove any existing cabinets or shelves.

We had to take down both, but luckily we repurposed the old shelf and added it to our garage for extra storage! The wire shelf may need to get sold on Facebook using my tips.

Empty laundry room wall before laundry room cabinets & shelving added

2. Use a stud finder to find studs.

Stud finder used for laundry cabinet installation

3. Use 4’ level to mark the line where the bottom of the cabinets. This will determine the hanging height of the cabinets and how much extra room there will be on the top of the cabinets.

4. Put up and hold up cabinets while a second person puts 4’ level on the face of cabinets vertically to see if they will be plumb.

If they are not plumb, use wood shims to plumb (you might have to do this if the wall is in/out). Luckily, our laundry room was pretty square and we did not have to do this!

5. Use a cordless drill and 3.5” screws to anchor cabinets to studs. Each cabinet ideally would be anchored to two (2) separate studs that are typically located 16”s apart.

Attaching laundry room cabinets with drill

6. The big trick is to use a tape measurer and your brain to transfer the stud location from the wall to the inside of the cabinet. You have to subtract the thickness of the cabinet’s sidewall.

Wall Laundry Room Cabinet being installed over washer and dryer

7. Once cabinets are hung drill horizontally behind the doors to attach them to each other.

Man drilling painted cabinets horizontally to attach laundry cabinets

8. Put the doors back on the cabinets. You can also try to put the painted doors back before hanging, but we just thought this way was easier.

**Optional: Add hardware to your cabinets or leave them without. We loved the look and price of the hardware we used in our recent bathroom vanity makeover, so we decided to order those handles again. 

DIY laundry room wall cabinet idea from painted stock cabinets

8. Use drywall mud to fix any spots that previous shelving may have left and paint the room or touch up with the existing color. I love this color of Temperate Taupe by SW.

How to Build Extra Laundry Shelving With Cabinets

Adding open shelving above the utility was a must. One day we may also add a spring rod under the bottom shelf to hang dry clothes when needed.

Recommended Supplies For Open Shelving

  • 2 sets of these brackets to help create two shelves above our utility sink next to the upper stock cabinets. They come in a variety of sizes and we chose the 9.25” width where we could cut 1 x 10” to our desired distance. 
  • 1 x 10″ pine board cut to desired length (we had two boards that were 30″ long)

1. Cut boards to size.

2. After cutting the boards, we primed using SW latex primer and the same latex enamel paint that we used on the cabinets.

DIY laundry room shelves over utility sink

3. Attach the shelving brackets to studs using anchors and the hardware provided with the brackets.

Organized DIY laundry room shelves with farmhouse brackets

Organize Your Laundry Supplies Easily

Once the laundry shelves were completed it was so nice to get them completely organized and ready to use.  The only dilemma that we have now is that we need to decide if the brushed nickel hardware pulls to go with the black farmhouse shelving brackets.

We decided the metals did not go together. DIY is always a process.

Large Gray-blue laundry room cabinets above washer and dryer

Did you know you can spray paint hardware?

UPDATE: Recently we painted the hardware black to match the existing farmhouse shelf brackets. It looks much more put together with matching metals.

DIY laundry room wall cabinets and open shelving over the washer, dryer and utility tub.

Need more small DIY laundry room ideas? Check out our list of ideas to make your laundry room look bigger.

I couldn’t believe how much more storage I had in these DIY laundry room cabinets and that my shelves were no longer overflowing. Now they also look so much better with matching metals.

How-To FAQs

What are the dimensions of our small laundry room?

For reference, you may want to know that our laundry room is approximately 7 ½ ft. by 6 ft.  We are able to just fit our new washer, dryer, and utility tub on the length of the wall with a little wiggle room in between.
We do have large-capacity appliances, so I am sure we would have more space if we had a smaller washer and dryer.

Could your laundry cabinets go all the way across the wall?

The main reason I did not want cabinets going all the way across the wall is that I normally buy a large container of laundry soap with the dispenser. I like when the dispenser can hang off the edge of the laundry shelf and over my utility tub. This makes it way easier to quickly add soap. 

Does your washer lid hit the handles when open?

Only slightly. We are easily able to get in and out of our washer with full loads. If you are worried, you could hang your cabinets a little higher or not use as large of handles.

What other DIY projects have used this charcoal blue-colored paint?

From an oak banister to bathroom cabinets we have used this color throughout our home. You can see the whole list of charcoal blue painting projects.

Do you have to use a brush and roller to paint?

Try an inexpensive paint sprayer. This one has great reviews and we plan on trying ours out soon. The biggest con to using a paint sprayer is setting up your work area. These cabinets would be perfect to spray because you have not hung them yet.

What are the heights of the shelves?

The bottom shelf is 62″ from the floor and the next shelf is 10″ above that.

Follow us on Pinterest, Youtube or Facebook for more DIY inspiration!

I am so happy that we are finally using all the extra space in our laundry room for storage!

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Kim klein

Sunday 22nd of August 2021

Hello! Came across this while searching for how to hang cabinets over the washer and dryer. I love the idea of the shelves over the sink- can you tell me how far up from the bottom of the cabinet you put the first shelf, and how far apart they are? It’s a great look and I want to reproduce it! I’m so glad you link to everything you use - I’ll probably use smaller handles but I love those heavy duty brackets on the shelves!

Thank you!

Kim

Erin

Monday 23rd of August 2021

Hi Kim. I am glad you like our simple DIY laundry room makeover. The bottom shelf is 62" off the floor and the next shelf is 10" above that. The bottom shelf is also 12" above the bottom of the cabinet. I am shorter so that is why we chose to make our laundry shelves that height. We did 10" in-between as we knew we could fit smaller items like Clorox wipes, etc. You may want to look at some of the products you may put on the shelf and make sure they will fit how you want. I hope that helps! We love the farmhouse brackets that we even used the same ones and paint colors when redid a basement closet.

Elena

Saturday 27th of February 2021

Do you have any issues opening the lid of your top loading washing machine? Does it hit the cabinets?

Erin

Saturday 27th of February 2021

Hi Elena. Due to my hardware being large, the top does lightly rest on the handles, however, it is not an issue at all when loading. I just can't fling the lid open. If that would really bother you, then you could always hang the cabinets a little higher and even keep a little step stool in your laundry room. Due to my height, I didn't want to not be able to reach the upper shelf in the laundry room cabinets. Good luck with your laundry room.

Tammy

Wednesday 21st of October 2020

I love how detailed you are with explaining. Turned out great.

Erin

Saturday 24th of October 2020

Hi Tammy. Thank you for your kind words. We really do love this extra storage in our laundry room.

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