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Basement Update: How to Hide an Ugly Washer and Dryer

Today’s basement update features a quick and thrifty idea: I’m sharing an easy solution for how to hide an ugly washer and dryer – just hang curtains!

How to hide an ugly washer and dryerLaundry room curtain

After we drywalled and painted (including painting the floor a bright turquoise), the laundry room still had some unattractive elements: a really old washer and dryer, water tank, slop sink and mess of pipes.

Aqua painted floor

I needed a cheap solution for how to hide an ugly washer and dryer.  I had to think outside the box for this budget laundry room makeover, because so many inspiring laundry room makeovers involve a new washer and dryer!  That’s just not in our budget – plus these old machines work so well.  In the end, we came up with something that fit our budget and was easy: curtains.  That’s how to hide an ugly washer and dryer for cheap!

How to Hide an Ugly Washer and Dryer:How to Hide an Ugly Washer and Dryer with an Upcyled Curtain. Budget-Friendly Laundry Room Makeover Idea! #laundroom #upcycle #savingmoney #budgethomedecor

We installed Ikea curtain rods as close to the ceiling as possible (although we originally priced out DIY rods, the whole shebang, including the drapery rings, was only about $30.00 at Ikea so we ditched the DIY plans).

Once the bar was installed, my Mom was roped in to help me do some sewing.  Anyone recognize the fabric???

It’s our old duvet cover!  I loved the pattern but never really liked it with the DIY metal headboard.  When we replaced the bedding with crisp white linens, I didn’t want to just get rid of the old stuff, so I hoarded it in the linen closet.  When my basement inspiration featured DIY stamped fabric, with a faded black pattern, I knew I had just the fabric to achieve the look and reusing what I had saved me money.  We cut open the duvet cover and simply hemmed the edges.  One problem: they were a bit floody.

I like my curtains to just touch the ground, puddling a tiny bit, so we used the old black bedskirt to add a border.  We opted for a thick border so it looks intentional and adds a bit of weight.

Now the ugly laundry room is hidden but easily accessed.  Peekaboo!

Plus, I can access one side while keeping the other hidden.  Although both sides look much better closed!  I thought curtains might be a hassle, but I just push them aside with my bum when my arms are occupied carrying a laundry basket. They slide really easily on the rings. A door on the laundry room would be a solution too, but it’s a sub-standard size plus blocking off the room right at the doorway made the basement seem closed off and weird.  Also, opening a door with a laundry basket is much less convenient.  I can still toss things in the hamper or take things off the dry line without touching the curtains.  It works for us!  When I show photos of the rest of the space, you’ll see how sharp the laundry room looks now from the rest of the basement.

Laundry room curtains

It’s so hard to take a good photo in the laundry with NO natural light, but I’ll take a stab at better shots for a full “after” tour!  I just couldn’t wait to share my idea for how to hide an ugly washer and dryer – hopefully this budget-friendly laundry room makeover inspires someone else with a tiny budget to make their laundry room a little less scary – and a little more invisible, haha.

Don’t Forget to Pin for Later!

How to Hide an Ugly Washer and Dryer with an Upcyled Curtain. Budget-Friendly Laundry Room Makeover Idea! #laundroom #upcycle #savingmoney #budgethomedecorUpcycle bedding into new curtains

P.S. I’ve had a few people, over the years, ask me where we got the black and white tree bedding.  It was purchased from HomeSense and I don’t remember the brand, but I happened to find a very similar bedding set on Amazon (here’s another sort of similar one and here’s one with a larger tree design) for anyone trying to track it down.

Version 2.0:

UPDATE: I loved this idea for how to to hide an ugly washer and dryer SO MUCH that I did the same thing in my new house, but with a curtain track and heavier fabric.  Check it out here!



  1. Amy
    June 26, 2013 / 12:25 pm

    Amazing! You and your mom are quite the genius team! Way to reuse what you already had as well. 🙂

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      June 26, 2013 / 2:13 pm

      We are a pretty awesome team (if I do say so myself). We approach problems so differently, but both love a DIY project. Moving closer to her means so many more fun sewing projects. Plus everyone will get to see us makeover and renovate her house too!! I'm so excited.

  2. Melanie @ Mailbox Journey
    June 26, 2013 / 12:55 pm

    Very clever!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      June 26, 2013 / 2:13 pm

      Thanks!! It's cheapness thrills me the most 😉

  3. Al@PolkaDotsandPaisley
    June 26, 2013 / 12:57 pm

    I love the look of the curtains and think the thick border looks awesome. This is definitely a great way to hide unsightly appliances.

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      June 26, 2013 / 2:14 pm

      Thanks!! The laundry room definitely looks a lot cheerier now and from other rooms the unsightly stuff is hidden without closing off the room. Although, new appliances would be lovely . . . a girl can dream!

  4. Vintage Market Place
    June 26, 2013 / 1:44 pm

    Tanya it looks amazing!!So chic and really high end styling. So smart!Amy

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      June 26, 2013 / 2:14 pm

      Thanks Amy!! Certainly much fancier than the dump it was before. Less scary, too, which I hope home buyers recognize!! It's funny to come back after showings and see they've fussed with the curtains.

  5. Anonymous
    June 26, 2013 / 2:16 pm

    I love the solution you came up with! I'm a huge fan of cheap and it looks so pretty while being practical. Kudos to you!

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      June 26, 2013 / 9:10 pm

      Thanks! I'm definitely feeling the penny pinch right now so being able to come up with a solution that was cheap was a huge relief. Even if we hadn't re-purposed old linens, fabric stores always have great sales on basic cottons. One of the living room curtain sheers was only $1 a meter!!

  6. Dana@Mid2Mod
    June 26, 2013 / 3:37 pm

    Cute idea! Mom to the rescue again!!! 🙂

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      June 26, 2013 / 9:11 pm

      Isn't she awesome? I was going to sew these myself but then she and my Dad decided to come for a visit to help finish getting the house ready for sale. I'm glad she did the curtains because there was more fussy work than I thought and my version would have looked sloppy. I actually hate sewing. When it comes to sewing, I'm more of an idea person, lol.

  7. EJ @ Not A House, But A Home
    June 26, 2013 / 5:40 pm

    Those curtains look great! The black border really finishes them off well so I guess it worked out that they were a bit short 😉

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      June 26, 2013 / 9:12 pm

      It was lucky! In hindsight, they look naked without them. And because of the border, even people who recognize the bedding (or have it – it was from Winner's) don't recognize it at first and doubt themselves. Sneaky sneaky!!

  8. erica | wicked bride
    June 26, 2013 / 11:10 pm

    This is brilliant – and so pretty! I have to go through two doors to get to the washing machine and you're right – it's tricky with armfuls of laundry.

  9. cred
    June 28, 2013 / 4:46 pm

    Love this! I love it when you can reuse something you already have to save some dough- especially if it's something you loved but it somehow didn't work where you originally planned. The minty floor and black and white look great!

  10. Janelle @ Two Cups Of Happy
    July 23, 2013 / 3:14 am

    This is such a fun makeover! I really like the colour you chose for the floors. Projects like these are always my favorite because you get a big impact for less money. Popped over from your feature on Apartment Therapy and now am a new follower. 🙂

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      July 23, 2013 / 4:20 am

      Hi Janelle! Thanks for saying "hi"! I am also a fan of the not-a-lot-of-money project, mostly because I don't have a lot money, lol.

  11. Anonymous
    July 24, 2013 / 7:21 pm

    Just wondering…usually water heaters are close to the floor for safety reasons (I think gas fumes are heavy and sink). Do the curtains allow for enough ventilation (or maybe your water heater is electric)?

    • Tanya from Dans le Townhouse
      July 24, 2013 / 10:46 pm

      I defaulted to Hubby on this: our hot water tank is heated by gas but the input and output is located outside. There are no fumes inside and if there are, that means the water tank is malfunctioning. It would be bad, curtain or no, and need to remedied ASAP. Our water tank does have a minimum clearance, but it is two inches on the sides and rear, and four inches from the front, which we meet.The way I see it, there are much smaller utility/laundry rooms with hot water tanks in them, and all this curtain does is make the room smaller in that area. It's also not close enough to anything to be a fire hazard.But, please refer to your own water heater's manual if you're thinking about this. Also, please note we do not have a furnace behind there and I'm not sure how this project would impact that.

  12. Lory Seffrood
    April 21, 2014 / 8:12 pm

    Brilliant!!! I love the use what you have ingenuity!!! Thanks for sharing

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