The attic doesn't have to be creepy or boring, all you have to do is make it a sleepover/ slumber party room. LOVE THIS! Or just make it the kids playroom or area!!! Insulate it and never worry about "their" area! It's like their own club house :)
I just love this idea for a laundry chute because I'm wild about boats. oceans, lakes, rivers, fish, seaweed, zebra mussels on shipwrecks that slice your hand open - it's so calming to me. I don't think this is necessarily elegant, but I would love to see it everyday.