There are two rooms in the home that are always in need of style and ease-of-use updates: the kitchen and the mudroom.
The kitchen gets the attention most of the time.
But the mudroom? It has long been neglected. I’m often begged by clients building new homes to make this a priority.
I get it.
In this country, we have to take part of our clothing budget and set it aside for snow clothes. Coats, boots, gloves, hats, scarves, goggles, snow skiing gear….it goes on and on. It all needs a place to be stored. You have to have it, yet it isn’t in use part of the year. Then you have the mud months of May and June. If you don’t have a place to shed the mud, it’s coming through the rest of the house. If you have kids like me, times the mess by 10.
It really is a fight to keep the mudroom in order. Many times, it is a shared laundry room, and that complicates things further.
Here are a few ways to take charge of your mudroom (and sanity). I’ll use drawings from a recent mudroom/laundry design to help you get organized.
You must have waterproof and cleanable floors.
Tile is best. It’s hardy and cleans up nicely. Add a rug to catch some of the wet snow, mud, and dust. It’s not a good idea to have a wood floor in a mudroom.
Add Hooks or Build Lockers
In our own remodel, we put up simple hooks. These are temporary until we can get custom lockers. We need 3-4 hooks per person to corral all of our coats. It’s not perfect, but I’m glad I have it.
In this drawing, the room allowed four lockers. We are keeping the faces and shoe spots open, because there are young children in the home. I’ve had drawers for shoes in a previous home, but my kids never put them in the drawer. I always did it after they got home. I think the open spots encourage little ones to put items away.
Baskets are your best friend. There are so many odds and ends that have to be contained. In my mudroom, Dave built a shelf over our hooks, and I bought inexpensive plastic containers (so they are wipeable as well) to corral our smaller items, like dog leashes. It’s not that pretty, but it keeps stuff off the floor. Well, most of the time!
Here are a few fun features we worked into a client’s laundry/mudroom that is being built right now.
A hanging hook over the washer and dryer, and an open shelf. They can arrange the basket(s) however they want. It think it gives it charm.
On the other side of the washer and dryer, enclosed cabinets will hide laundry detergents and other items. There will also be a few pullout shelves to dry sweaters.
The one thing we don’t need in the mountains is containers for umbrellas. We don’t get very many torrential rainstorms, but if you are in an area that does, add an umbrella holder. I imagine umbrellas are pretty awkward to store.
Next time you are planning a house, please make room for a better mudroom! You’ll be glad you did.
Now over to you.
Tell us what you would like in YOUR mudroom.