Today's main-floor laundry rooms are much more convenient—and stylish—than their basement-dwelling forebears. This one combines elements of the adjacent kitchen and butler's pantry: the same Shaker-style cabinets, here given a coat of deep green paint; a pale Carrara countertop; gleaming black-and-white marble flooring; and a pair of unexpected storage-seat stools. The beadboard backsplash adds another classic touch—and hides the dryer vent and water hookup.
The mix of traditional and offbeat elements looks handsome but not fussy. "It's dressed up and cheerful," says interior designer Becca Laufenberg, who created the room with business partner Wendy Daniel. Her guidelines for making a utilitarian room suited to an out-in-the-open location: "Keep neighboring architectural elements such as cabinetry and trim the same, then get more playful with the color palette and other finishes," says Laufenberg. Here are ideas for creating a similar space.