Ask a question

The Bunnings Workshop community can help with your home improvement projects.

Queenslander laundry transformation

Making a Splash
Making a Splash


A complete laundry overhaul with Kaboodle cabinetry, mosaic tile splashback, laminate flooring, plus fresh paint and new appliances.



The project


Owning what was, potentially, the ugliest laundry in Queensland, I knew I had my work cut out when I decide to undertake a complete gutting of the room. All I can say is thank goodness for Bunnings Warehouse and Bunnings Workshop.




Step 1


My old laundry was located on the ground level of my Queenslander. It had been hastily refreshed just before I was about to give to give birth and, in the years since, life, work, travel and other renovations were prioritised. I hated the laundry so much that I could barely bring myself to enter the room in the past year or so, but my particular disgust was reserved for the revolting exposed pipes with the outdated colour scheme coming a close second.


It had to go. It was beyond manky.




The hideous colour scheme left over from the late '90s.




The only thing worse than these vile exposed pipes were the revolting taps and sink.






Step 2 


I spent lots of time scrolling online, and even more playing with the Kaboodle online planning tool. However, it was Workshop member housetohome's Farmhouse laundry renovation that truly provided inspiration for my appliances’ cabinets. Without a doubt, the idea of a raised washer and dryer is a game changer.




A 3D render helps to visualise your project.


3D render.jpg


2D render. Spend some quality time with the Kaboodle planning tool.


2D render.jpg


After I measured, remeasured, mocked up, planned and replanned using the Kaboodle site, I booked an in-store Laundry Planning Consultation to double check everything with the Special Orders Team at Bunnings Newstead, Queensland. I absolutely recommend this step. Even though I consider myself to be an experienced renovator, it’s still valuable to get professional advice and tips.


Step 3


For building the cabinetry, use the Kaboodle resources. Watch and rewatch all of the videos. I constructed all of the cabinets myself (fortunately, I have a good set of knees) but if you’re new to flatpacks and using power tools, you may want to have an offsider and initially take it very slowly.  What’s important is to back yourself and have a go. 


More advice:


  • Read the instructions (yes, really!)

  • Construct the cabinets on a large, thick rug with plenty of elbow room

  • Organise your tools and the screws, etc. on a separate flattened box

  • Dip the screws in Aquadhere glue for extra strength

  • Have a laptop or phone available with the Kaboodle videos ready to play, just in case

  • Ensure that you have enough room to store your completed cabinets

  • Download plenty of podcasts or some audio books to listen to as you work.


Dipping the screws in Aquadhere strengthens the cabinets' structures.






I had a very particular colour scheme in mind, so I decided on the raw cabinet doors. Owning several Queenslanders has honed my painting skills, so I was very happy to paint all of the cabinet doors - no one else was allowed near my beautiful Alpine doors. Again, if you are new to painting, I thoroughly recommend the Kaboodle videos as well as the videos on the Bunnings website. Watch them several times and then have a go. The great thing about painting is that any mistakes can be corrected.


My advice:


  • Set up an area for painting and do nothing else there, except paint

  • Keep the area dust free

  • Use the correct equipment (definitely the nap rollers).


I recommend a tinted undercoat for the coloured doors, then three to four coats of gloss paint (Dulux’s Sharp Blue and Vivid White).


Loving my paint choice - very Hamptons.




Don't add the knobs or handles until you install the doors. This was just to check that I was happy with my choice of Kaboodle’s Worn Gold Salento Kitchen Handle.


A perfect match.




Step 4 


I gutted the room, managing to reuse most of the existing cabinets in a rental property I have, but the sink was past its use-by date. Between painting and prepping the walls, I waterproofed the edge of the floor which joins the exterior wall, screed and primed the concrete and then laid the vinyl planks. The new brass spotlights were installed by the electrician; already the room felt better … and it was empty.


First time waterproofing.




Level and prime the old floor ready for some fresh new LVP. What a difference.






Step 5


Painting really gave the utility room such a fresh look. Dulux’s Lexicon Half Strength is perfect if you want a classic Hamptons look and the brass spotlights complement the style.


Because there is only one window in the room, both paint and lights had to work well together.




Step 6 


I had seven cabinets, two sets of drawers and a broom cupboard (pantry) to construct and install. Again, I did these all myself. I only needed assistance with the installation of the wall cabinet.


My advice: measure, measure, measure. I left the kickboards and the benchtops until later in the process.


Adding the legs is an easy process, even when doing it solo.




Tetris time.




Did I mention that my century plus aged house isn't square anywhere?




To construct the appliances’ cabinets, Premium BC Plywood was used. Remember to leave room for plumbing and electrics - measure your taps and plugs carefully. Also, I did spend some time mocking up the construction, for my own peace of mind.


Screwing down the base for the appliances.




Mock up.




Step 7 


One of the happiest days of the project was when I constructed and installed the boxing around the pipes. Thank you to @MitchellMc and @EricL at Bunnings for their timely online advice and support. Pipes, wires and random holes have now disappeared. Ah, the quirks of a 110+ years young Queenslander.


Mitchell's rendering of exactly how to box up the pipes and wires.


CAD Drawing.jpg


This sight had irritated me for years.




And now, they're gone.




Other random holes patched up.




More pipes and wires boxed up.



Step 8 


I had to be quite inventive with some modifications to accommodate the broom cupboard with a slightly lower ceiling height and some quirks of the room’s construction (limited building regulations in the first decade of the 1900s). I trimmed down the door but still wanted the shaker-style look, so I glued on some very thin ply which worked perfectly.


Trimming the door.




Use thin ply to recreate the Shaker style.




Clamp the ply.




New door.




A new drill bit helped me to change the position of one of the cabinet’s hinges. Cutting in at the back of the cabinet also allowed me to position it over an existing power point, so I have power for my vacuum charger.


Love a new drill bit.




Again, the Queenslander shows it requires the haute couture approach, as opposed to the ease of pret-a-porter.




Happily, there was an existing power point in exactly the right place.



Getting ready to hang the rejigged door.




I added a filler panel as well as some crown moulding to achieve the Hamptons style I wanted.




The only real hitch I had in the whole process was getting the modified broom cupboard door square. Due to its weight, I needed to call on my husband and between us, we were able to adjust the hinges.


To accommodate the Belfast sink, I constructed two "benches" from leftover ply on which to sit the sink, allowing the waste pipe to go through the middle. I got some more assistance from my husband for the final installation of the Belfast sink (which I could barely lift). Then, our very patient plumber did the second fit plumbing to connect the waste and brass tap, as well as the inlet pipes and taps for the washing machine.


My fluted-front Belfast sink is a thing of beauty.




Leave nothing to chance. Draw a cardboard template for the sink benchtop.




The benchtop is on.




The cabinet door underneath the Belfast sink also needed to be cut down, so I drilled a new hole for the top hinge. I used the same process of adding an extra piece of ply to the top of the door to maintain the Shaker-style look of the door.


When it came time to install the benchtop, I played it safe and created a template in cardboard to use as an accurate guide when cutting out the Calypso Gloss benchtop.


Step 9 


I used Rust-Oleum spray paint in Gloss White to rejuvenate the whiteness of my dryer and security grill (also perfect for spraying an air-conditioning unit if it’s yellowing). I fitted new brass window fittings, a Kaboodle under cabinet LED light panel with contactless switching, a Kaboodle 35L Pullout Bin and blue Victorian glass tiles as the splashback.


Time for new brassware.




Rust-Oleum White Gloss on the security grill made it look brand new.




The pull-out bin is installed to the right to allow for storage of a small ironing board.




Lay out the tiles in the order in which they will be used. As it was my first time using mosaic tiles, I made sure to plan the pattern carefully. 




With the under-cabinet LED panel, I wanted all of the wires to be hidden – this meant that I had to plan accordingly: install this before the kickboard, tiles and benchtop all went in.






When undertaking a project like this, always break down its different stages to the smallest parts. This means that everything is done in the correct order and reduces the likelihood of costly errors.


The end was in sight, but there were still some vital jobs to complete: measuring, cutting, painting and installing the kickboards, cabinet handles (definitely use the Kaboodle template), crown moulding and the Calcutta gloss benchtop.


My husband was able to push the cabinet into place and lift the dryer to slot into place. However, we had to hire a lift trolley to get the washing machine up and into place, due to its considerable weight. In the end, it went in fairly easily and doesn’t even require any extra rubber pads underneath, which I thought might be needed. It did need an extra-long outlet drain hose but, after a couple of false starts, I got the right one.


Plumbing finished, cabinet in place and ready to install the appliances.




Almost ready to use my washing machine.




So much better than the old door.




Brass ring pull handle - flush to fit the barn door.




As with any job, there’s always one final big push. For me, this included painting touch ups, extra boxing of pipes and the installation of a beautiful barn door from Bunnings (sadly, these have been discontinued). I splurged on a special order of the brass roller track but with the tap, lights, sink waste, cabinet handles, sink protector, window hardware and hooks all being brass, using any other colour on such a visible part of the room would have looked ridiculous.


Step 10


At long last, I got to style my utility room, which was fun, and then organise it – the best part of the job. The drawers are amazing for sorting washing, the broom cupboard houses the larger cleaning items and I also installed a Kaboodle carousel which has been fantastic – no more rummaging through the back of a cabinet, searching for cleaning products (and no replicated purchasing of items). A fan, phone and speaker charger, some lovely hand soap and lotion, matching blue labels for my cleaning items, a Bunnings terrarium and a custom-made Roman blind (with William Morris fabric) completed the project.


No more bending down to search for socks that are lost in the cavern of the washing machine.




The deep drawers are excellent for sorting washing.




Labels made on my Cricut.




A Christmas present of a terrarium works perfectly here.








I'm so happy with this cleaning cupboard. 




No more "lost" product with this carousel.






Not a week goes by when I don’t tell someone how much I adore my Hamptons-style utility room. It’s much more than a laundry - it houses sewing equipment, cleaning utensils and products, ironing equipment, general household items, and even craft materials. I spend a lot of time in there doing different hobbies and tasks. Happily, I really enjoyed the process of designing, planning and constructing the room.


Even better, I learnt new skills, improved existing ones and overcame my underlying fear of circular and drop saws. My confidence with power tools has gone through the roof. I’m really satisfied that I managed to complete the majority of this project completely by myself and keep the budget to a respectable four figures, which represents good value nowadays, even with some particularly high-end purchases.


Thank you to the Newstead Bunnings Special Orders Desk staff (especially Lizzy, who chased many items for me) and the Bunnings Workshop team, who provided such inspiration and guidance on this site.



Before and after






Home Improvement Guru

Good Evening @RenoRach1 

Seriously when I saw your thumbnail pic for the project I presumed it was a "stock" image... how wrong was I ! That laundry looks unbelievably good! Bo kicking and screaming from old to new, just "BOOM" and yep a sparkling miodern laundry :smile:


Well done and I thin it would be a pleasure to use.



Making a Splash

Hi @Dave-1 


Thank you so much for your kind words! You are so right - it definitely IS a pleasure to use.  No dirty washing gets left in our house - I'm straight into my lovely utility room to wash anything and everything! Really happy with the way it looks but also, the way it works.  Having the appliances elevated means there's no more bending over into the washing machine. Also, having the large L-shaped benches means that I can fold towels and fitted sheets very easily.  I have an ironing board and a steamer in the room, so all of the clothes get pressed as soon as they come in from the line.


A couple of months ago, I had a loo installed, so it's become a powder room which is great for the downstairs games and bar area. All round, it's been a bit of a game-changer - anything that makes life easier is a bonus!

Why join the Bunnings Workshop community?

Workshop is a friendly place to learn, get ideas and find inspiration for your home improvement projects