Laundry organizers can do more than just keep your laundry room tidy. Also known as laundry sorters, the best of these wheeled wonders–which typically offer two, three or four laundry compartments–are designed to save you time, with helpful features such as ironing boards, clothes hanging rods, storage shelves and surfaces for folding.
What’s also great about these multi-function laundry organizers is how compact they are. Here are three efficient examples to help you make the most of your laundry room space:
- The Triple Sorter Rolling Laundry Hamper performs triple duty–in addition to three cotton canvas laundry bags for simple sorting, it has a clothing rod for hanging pressed garments or air-drying delicate articles of clothing, and a top shelf for holding laundry accessories. A wire shelf below the hanging bags provides support for when the bags are filled.
- Another triple-function laundry organizer is the Laundry Sorter with Ironing Board, which lets you easily sort, iron and fold clothing in one convenient location. The built-in ironing board features a thick foam pad and heat-resistant cotton cover to provide a smooth ironing surface. The board lifts up to reveal a laundry sorter with three removable laundry bags that hang securely on the frame with metal handles for easy carrying. The bags have side mesh panels for adequate ventilation and the interior is coated to provide resistance to odors and mildew.
- The dual-function Laundry Folding Table and Double Sorter consists of a stationary table for folding, with a slide-out two-bag laundry sorter underneath. A bottom bar on the rolling sorter helps support full bags of laundry, and the bags can easily be removed for transport.
For more ideas on laundry room organization, read my earlier posts on laundry room organizers and laundry storage solutions; also space-saving laundry drying racks and laundry baskets.
Never enough closet space? Portable closets to the rescue!
Portable closets, aka rolling wardrobes, are ideal for storing out-of-season or infrequently worn clothes and accessories. The old-style rolling wardrobe is basically just a garment rack with a zippered cover–it’s only designed for storage of hanging garments. But portable closets tend to include more features, such as shelves and pockets that allow you to also store folded clothing and other items.
Here are three types of space-efficient portable closets, all with fabric covers and smooth-rolling casters:
- The Rolling Wardrobe Rack offers three storage sections: a top zippered shelving area for folded clothes, hats or handbags; a steel rod that provides 30 linear inches of hanging space; and a ventilated bottom shelf for shoe storage. The roll-up door makes it easy to access hanging garments and footwear; the top section has a triangular flap door.
- The versatile Mobile Wardrobe Center provides multiple storage options–the exterior features eight mesh pockets (sized for four pairs of shoes), a removable hamper bag for laundry (attached by Velcro and with a shoulder strap for easy transport), a wooden bar for hanging ties and scarves, removable pockets for toiletries, and additional pockets for undergarments and socks. The zip-up door has a clear section at the top so you can easily view your hangered clothes.
- The Clothes Armoire with Shelves has four compartments for keeping stacks of folded clothes and accessories organized, plus a closet bar that can hold up to 50 pounds of hanging garments. The bottom part is fully enclosed (unlike that of the Rolling Wardrobe Rack) to keep the contents protected.
Other types of portable closets can be found here.
Although most of us no longer have to drag our laundry down to the nearest river and beat it clean on the rocks, “doing the wash” is still a time-consuming, ongoing chore. The now-commonplace luxury of having constant access to a washing machine and dryer doesn’t eliminate all the time and effort that go into getting the laundry done: gathering and sorting items to be washed, pretreating stains, loading and unloading the machines, folding, hanging and putting things away — not to mention washing certain pieces by hand, line-drying and ironing.
A well-organized laundry center can help to streamline and simplify your laundering chores. But creating a functional home laundry in a small and/or awkwardly shaped area is a challenge. Fortunately, there are innovative products designed to utilize every nook and cranny of limited laundry room space. Here are some of my favorites:
- The Over the Washer Storage Shelf turns the wasted space between the back of your washer and the wall into easy-access storage for detergents, fabric softener, stain removers or other frequently used laundry products.
- The slim Rolling Laundry Room Storage Cart is just 7 inches wide, designed to roll into and out of the narrow space between your washer and dryer, with three shelves for storing laundry supplies.
- Pop-up laundry baskets are also great space-savers. The typical plastic or wicker laundry basket is a bulky space hog that’s hard to hide when not in use. A pop-up is a more efficient alternative–it instantly folds down flat for storage (hang it on a wall hook or slide it between washer and dryer) then pops back open easily whenever you need a wash basket.
- The most space-efficient system for drip-drying is the wall-mounted Telescoping Drying Rack, which functions as a towel bar that cleverly expands into an extended rack with 26 feet of drying space. The steel bar is handy for when you only have one or two items to air-dry, such as damp dish towels; when more drying area is needed, you just flip open the sides and presto — a 21-inch-deep, eight-rail rack pops out and locks in place, retracting easily (to just 2 inches deep) after your drying is done.
More laundry room tips:
- Keep a wastebasket near your washer/dryer for discarding dryer lint and emptying junk out of pockets.
- Put a box or bin labeled “Donate” in the laundry area, to help you continually weed outgrown or outmoded clothes as they pass through the laundry.
- Two other clutter-reducing labeled containers you might want to have, if you don’t already: one each for “Mending” and “Rags.” (But beware—these can get cluttered up if you’re not careful. You need to periodically let items “devolve” from rag status to trash.)