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Every home needs a mudroom. Image: Bob Povall Photography
With fall on the way, it’s time to get ready for the onset of inclement weather. Soon coats, gloves and muddy boots will become necessities when venturing out. Unfortunately, once it’s time to come back in, these items have a tendency to track remnants of the outdoors into the rest of your home. That is, unless you have a mudroom to help make this transition simpler.
If you’re ready to create an organizational area to help your family get in and out the door with ease, read on below. Our mudroom tips will help you improve your home’s organization, no matter how much space you have to work with.
First, decide what you need your mudroom to do for you. Image: NICHE home styling
Decide on functionality
The thing about mudrooms is they really are an anything-you-make-it feature. Adding one of these in your home is the ultimate display of design creativity because you aren’t that limited in terms of functional expectations.
Think about how you ideally need to use the space. Do you live in a cold climate where you need a lot of outerwear within arm’s reach? Would you like to take care of dirty clothing without having to drag the mess into the rest of the house? Are you simply looking for an organizational system to keep all your essential items ready for when you head out the door?
Whatever your personal needs may be, make sure to list them out so you have them on hand as the design process progresses. Then, take things a step further by searching out design inspiration on sites like Freshome to collect ideas on how to create your final product.
Find an appropriate space in your home. Image: Crisp Architects
Pick a location
While some of us are lucky enough to have a designated area for a mudroom, this is not always the case. Luckily, these spaces can become the epitome of multifunctional usage. If needed, standalone storage options can turn just about any area of your home into a makeshift transitional space.
Again, how you’ll use the space is paramount. While the entryway of your most-used door is likely the best location, consider whether you have any specific goals in mind that might make another area more ideal. For example, if you’re trying your best to contain mud, a laundry room or basement might be a smarter choice.
Secondly, take note of any areas of your home that fall under the category of “wasted space.” Since mudrooms are so flexible, they can be adapted to fit in less-than-ideal areas. In this case, an odd corner may be all you need.
Weigh your storage options. Image: Karp Associates Inc.
Lay out your storage options
Where mudrooms are concerned, your storage choices are key. Since the purpose of the space is to allow you and your family to easily transition from an outdoor to an indoor environment, make sure you have all the storage pieces in place for this process to go smoothly.
To do this, think about what it takes for you to get out the door — and where you tend to fall behind in the process. Then, consider what storage options could help solve those problems. Maybe it takes your kids forever to put their shoes on and they’d benefit from a dedicated shoe bench right beside the door or maybe you have a bad habit of losing your keys and should include a small bowl in which to keep them.
Once you have your wish list in mind, turn your attention to how you should lay out the space. Typically, where to include pieces like coat racks or storage benches will be self-explanatory, but if you’re having trouble, there are plenty of online tools available to assist with the task.
Give the space a few aesthetic touches. Image: Locale Design Build
Don’t forget aesthetics
Since function is so important in mudrooms, it can be easy to let aesthetics take a backseat. However, we’re of the mind that the use of a space has no impact on its ability to be aesthetically pleasing. Your mudroom will be a part of your home and it deserves just as much attention put into its interior design.
The best way to pull together spaces like this is through a coherent color scheme. Take the picture above as an example. It still follows the 10/30/60 color rule. It uses white as the main base color, some black elements as a secondary shade and then touches of gray as an accent color. Try to do the same in your own home.
Once your colors are in place, don’t hesitate to add in a few accent pieces to give the space a decorative flair. If you have the room, larger items like throw pillows or wall art will help finish off the look nicely. Even if you’re working with a limited area, a few small tchotchkes can make a big difference.