Introduction: Laundry Room Cabinets. DIY.
All too often, laundry rooms come with a single wire shelf. Get rid of it and fill the void with storage loving cabinets. It's easier than you think. These cabinets are built from wall to wall so you get to use every inch of space. I think I spent about $200.00 total (not including band-aids. See last step).
I also included a shelf above the appliances and a dowel to store clothes hangers just under the cabinets.
Step 1: How Deep Should Your Cabinets Be?
Keep in mind what you want to put in your laundry room cabinets. At my house we keep all our activity stuff. This includes board games, swim gear, and blankets for the grass at the park. Of course, there is also cleaning supplies and other household items like light bulbs.
I made my cabinets 13" deep. You'll see that I bought plywood typically used for flooring. It's ugly but it was only $15 a sheet. Nice plywood can cost as much as $50 a sheet. Don't worry you won't see it when complete.
You might also be able to get the sheets cut where you bought them. At this point, I ripped a 2x4 into 1" strips. These strips will be the main supports for the cabinets.
Step 2: Support Strips
After you decide how many shelves you want, you have to find the studs in the wall. My favorite way to do this is with neodymium magnets. Trace a magnet over the wall and search for the head of a screw. When the magnet sticks you know you have found a stud (since the screw is in the stud).
Screw on a strip with one screw and make sure it's level. Once level, add screws to the other stud points.
Step 3: Fit Your Shelves.
Not all walls are square. As you can see in the second picture, when I place my square in the corner I have about a 1/4" gap at the front of the right side. The left side was good. All I did was add that much more to the front edge when I marked the cut line. It fit great.
Now that all the shelves are fitted, it's time to cover up the compressed wood. Use adhesive shelving liner here. You can buy this in rolls at your home improvement store. I like to start the section at one end and then pull the adhesive protecting paper out from under it. As the paper is removed the liner sticks to the shelf. This keeps the liner flat which keeps out unwanted bubbles.
Step 4: Time for the Face Frame.
Since my opening was so big I ended up using 5 pieces of wood for the face frame. Four for the sides and one for the middle. I like to use pocket screws to keep the joints together.
When the frame is in place I simply nail it to the edge of the shelves. This is fine because I'm going to paint it. If you want to stain the cabinets, pocket screw the face frame to the shelves.
Cover up the gaps around the edges with molding. I used my router to make my own. Cut a section of crown molding for the top.
Step 5: Making the Doors.
This is just one way to make a cabinet door. I used the same pocket hole method. The only difference is that I cut slots in each wood piece so that I could slide in a panel. I used wainscoting to make the doors look fancy.
To help hang the doors I cut a 1" piece of wood for a spacer and placed it on the the lower molding. The doors sat on the spacer while I screwed in the doors. Lastly I installed handles.
With everything lined up, I took it apart and painted it. All the seams with the walls were caulked before painting.
Step 6: Extras. DON'T BE STUPID.
I added a shelf just above the appliances and a place to store clothes hangers just under the cabinets. It really helps out, especially when folding clothes.
Now, DON'T BE STUPID. I made another set of cabinets for my bathroom (Check them out in the 4th picture!). These cabinets did not need to be as deep. So.... I took one of the left over ply wood pieces that was 8 feet long and ran it through my table saw. I was cutting 1" off the edge. Since this piece was so long, as I ran it through the saw it began to get heavy on the exit side. I put more pressure on the wood so that it would still contact the blade. When the last bit was cut, the 1" remnant fell to the ground as my left hand slip off of it. The tip of my finger went right into the blade. You can see the damage. And that was with the flap of skin pushed back over.
I should have had a secondary support and used a a push stick. The skin on my finger has healed but it still feels like there is an empty spot on the pad of my finger tip. Keep safety in mind and you won't have to add the cost of band-aids, rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, and Neosporin to this project.
Thanks for reading.
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This looks wonderful and I've decided I want to do this at my house... but I have one question I came up with while glancing through your photos. During the phase where you are using magnets to find the studs, it looks like none of the magnets are within the limits of the supports on the walls to the sides of your cabinets. Did you actually find a stud there, or did you use anchors, or how did this get solved?