Utility room ideas: 15 inspiring ways to organise yours

Look to these utility room ideas for all the design inspiration you need. Whether you want to build one into your current space to house your washing machine and co, or incorporate it as part of an extension, we've got you covered...

Utility room ideas separated from main kitchen by Masterclass Kitchens
(Image credit: Masterclass Kitchens)

If you think these utility room ideas require a huge kitchen, doing an expensive remodel or having a handy utility already built into your home, then we have some good news! As a utility can actually be squeezed into the smallest of spaces and it can make a huge, positive difference to your home. 

Ideal for keeping laundry tasks, washing machines and the likes a little separate, a utility space is now becoming a standard requirement in modern homes. So if you are getting any work done to your kitchen, designing a utility room makes sense, if you have got the space. And if you aren't planning on changing your kitchen too much, let these ideas show you creative ways you can add and best use a utility room in your current space.

1. Zone your utility room

Utility room in grey with washing machines by Burlanes


(Image credit: Burlanes)

If your utility room is narrower than you'd like, if it's clearly visible from the kitchen or hallway, or if you have to pass through it to get to the garden, order is key. A great utility room idea is to divide your space into zones, helping it to look neater and feel more organised. 

A row of tall units or large cupboards are a good option for narrow spaces providing storage for all your washing needs, plus you can hide everything away behind closed doors. 

This design from Burlanes includes a handy pull-out shelf for a clothes airer, a washer and dryer stacked one on the other to save space and a wet area. Clever.

2. Fit out every inch of a narrow utility room 

Small, galley shaped utility room by Schüller


(Image credit: Schüller)

While we'd advise against this in a galley kitchen, in a narrow utility room function trumps form, so built-in floor-to-ceiling storage on both sides that helps you maximise the space you have is a worthwhile investment. A combination of open shelving and cupboards with door fronts will allow you to keep what you use all the time to hand, and clutter you're hoarding hidden away. 

3. Make wall space to dry clothes

Utility room with fold down clothes rack designed by Burlanes


(Image credit: Burlanes)

Short on floor space? One of our favourite and very simple utility room ideas is a wall mounted-airer that folds away when not in use – a practical option for drying clothes. Hang above a radiator to speed up the drying process, or above a sink or draining board so your clothes can drip dry.

4. Build in a washing basket on wheels

Utility room idea with a moveable laundry basket


(Image credit: Beauport Kitchens)

Even if you’ve got a laundry basket elsewhere in the house, it’s a good idea to have another one in the utility room. A basket on wheels, which can be tucked under the work surface when not in use, will help keep floor space clear and the room neat-looking. 

5. Make space for a wine cellar (you know it makes sense)

Utility room idea with built in, underfloor wine cellar by Spiral Cellars


(Image credit: Spiral Cellars)

If you like to have a glass of wine when you’re doing your ironing (just the one, health and safety and all that), then you’re going to love this utility room idea. A spiral wine cellar, complete with one of the best wine fridges, is an entirely natural cellar that can be installed under any ground floor room and doesn’t require an existing cellar or basement. 

Built from engineered concrete, a Spiral Cellar can either be fitted cleanly into a finished room, or form part of a new house build, kitchen extension or refurbishment project.

6. Make yours part of your kitchen design

Utility room idea that is separated from main kitchen


(Image credit: Masterclass Kitchens)

Utility rooms can often be dark and windowless, which is why we love this glass walled design by Masterclass Kitchens. The decorative glass makes it a seamless part of the kitchen design as it isn’t completely closed off from the cooking and dining area. Plus, it allows natural light to flood the room which is uplifting to say the least. 

If you're already having nightmares about eating to the hum of a washing machine, don't panic as we know some of the best quiet washing machines out there to help.

7. Think ergonomics: design a washing machine cupboard

Utility room design idea by Schüller


(Image credit: Schüller)

Schüller's clever utility room ideas allow you to save yourself from backache by raising the washing machine and tumble dryer to mid height, as well as fitting a sliding shelf underneath (for your laundry basket), eliminating the need to bend over to load and unload. Genius.

8. Plan utility room storage carefully

Utility room by Schüller


(Image credit: Schüller)

Mix and match your utility room storage options to create a space that works for you. Anything you regularly need should be within easy reach and incidentals placed on a high shelf or out-of-the-way spot. If you’re planning to have a sink in your utility room, it’s a good idea to place it near the washing machine so that you can transfer anything left to soak without water dripping over the floor. 

9. Combine your utility room with a boot room

Utility room and boot room design idea by lewis alderson


(Image credit: Lewis Alderson)

Utility rooms aren't just for washing and ironing clothes. If you don’t have space in your hallway, or simply don’t want the entrance to your home filled with coats, fit some hooks in your utility room to keep them out of the way in a combined utility/boot room space.

Got a dog? If there's room, a gigantic sink to shower them off in saves hosing down the pooch in the garden on a wet winter's day... or up in your sparkling clean bathroom.

If you are seriously thinking about adding a boot room we've put together a detailed guide of how to do it. 

10. Always think outside the box

Utility room by Schüller


(Image credit: Schüller)

Another clever utility room idea from Schüller is this laundry sorting unit. Through the open slots in the door, dirty washing can be passed through and sorted (whether by washing temperature or colour) into laundry baskets that can be taken.

11. Copy ideas that suit the style of your home

cottage utility room shelving



(Image credit: Jody Stewart)

If your home is traditional in style, then include utility room, pantry or larder that suits this. We love the idea of creating open shelf pantry storage from reclaimed wood – try Beechfield Reclamation – to store kitchen equipment and using wicker baskets to organise laundry. You get the best of both worlds.

12. Create smart storage space with pegs and shelves

Neptune utility room


(Image credit: Neptune)

Loving how this utility room idea has been given a smart look with, a grey colour scheme, a mix of baskets and kitchen cabinets and a neat peg shelf. The storage shelf provides display and hanging space that's ideal for making a utility room practical and good looking. 

13. Hide utility room clutter with a curtain 

utility room ideas: a curtain hides appliances

(Image credit: Jeremy Phillips)

If you are looking for small utility room ideas for a space that you had to shoehorn into a nook, hanging a curtain beneath your worktop is a handy space-saving trick – and looks pretty, too. You can use it to hide clutter (well not clutter as such, but stuff like detergent and cleaning bits). Or you could use a curtain to hide a washing machine if you keep it just off your kitchen or hallway. On that subject, see our pick of the best washing machines in our buyer's guide.

14. Build in space for your pets

(Image credit: Brent Darby)

If your new utility room is going to function as a boot room too it might be worth considering building in a place for your pets. Maybe you need to keep them separate from the house at night? Or they need somewhere quiet to sleep during the day in their favourite pet bed? If you've got the space and can give up a couple of cupboards then we love the idea of this cosy under-the-counter space for furry friends!

15. Choose cute but practical flooring for your utility room 

nordic house kitchen shelves

(Image credit: Nordic House)

Utility rooms are practical spaces above all else but that's not to say you can't make them pretty spaces too. Your utility room flooring is the perfect place to add a bit of style – and tiles are the best choice but be sure to go with interesting tile patterns to add a little character.