This room is the new front of the house, it was the back but over time new roads were built. This means the really fancy door is now at the back where the garden is. The great thing about this road building, front back swap is that we come though the utility room so muddy feet and paws can clean up here. The mudroom, laundry room, lets call it a utility room as it covers all the bases. Below is what the room looks like now. It is quite a sizable space, larger than the kitchen in my first rental flat. The door you are looking at is another room that is off the utility that will house my darkroom. Years ago I had a very cramped but fully functional darkroom under the stairs. Then I moved house, (about a half a dozen times), and none of the houses had a suitable space. This darkroom will be beyond the cupboard under the stairs and it is one of the things that clinched the deal when I was looking at houses.
All of the existing units in this room will be ripped out and replaced with freestanding furniture. I have a lovely 1950s cupboard that I have been waiting to restore that will sit in this room when I take the wall units out and this will serve as the inspiration for the entire room. This room has to be functional, it will house the kitchen overflow, and there will be overflow. It will also house the washing machine and chest freezer but it is also the first room that people will see when they walk into the house so it needs to be homely.
I really like that people feel at home when they stay and having a room that is homely but still functions as a utility room will be a tricky. Luckily I have the perfect inspiration, or should I say perfick. That last word will only make sense to those who watched the show The Darling Buds Of May. For those of you who didn’t it was a show based on characters created by H E Bates. The stories were made to have the feel good factor in a post war Britain. The show was, and still is a great feel good programme for me and always makes me hungry. Ma Larkin spends most of every show cooking up a storm for their 7 children! The look and the feel of the Larkin kitchen is what I want. The picture at the start of this post is Ma’s kitchen, great isn’t it?
Okay so I realise that a utility room will not have a kitchen table in but I am confident that I can recreate the feel of the room so that the first thing you feel when you walk into the house is a warm hug. So how will I achieve this? The devil will be in the details. First of all I have the 1950s cupboard all ready to go it just needs a makeover. You can see it behind the limoncello from a previous post.
There are a number of other details that will help me achieve the feel. I am never normally a plate rack fan but this metal one is just divine. As the room will have to have a level of functionality one of which is the as a laundry space. Having all of the laundry products in glass containers will help the image of the room.
In my last house I had a clothes maiden and it was invaluable and I will be installing one in this house too. They look great and serve a purpose, not just for drying clothes on, you can hang herbs up to dry also.
I have found a small chest freezer and to keep continuity I would like to find a top loading washing machine to sit alongside it. I found a picture of a washer and dryer but you get the idea.
The room will have to have lots of things to house and wooden pegs will be very useful.