I had a super fun Wednesday getting back to everyone about their design dilemmas and project questions this week in my Just Ask category. The topic most people were interested in was organization, in particular mud rooms as we approach coat and boot season. I have designed hundreds of them so I am happy to share some inspiration.
Q. As the holidays and winter months approach I need to finally design my mud room. I have the space for built ins but wanted to also see what you can recommend if I just did a long bench with some storage. Barb L.
A. This is the perfect time of year to get new and existing mud rooms in order. A mud room is all about function and lifestyle. “Your” needs and “your” lifestyle, not what I like as a designer. I can tell you how to design a mud room but at the end of the day it has to work for you and your family. Everyone loves the locker idea; creating a built in system that contains divided sections usually for each child and a combination of hanging and shelf storage for each person, along with a bench. I really like this version above because the shoes are not thrown on a bottom open shelf they are nicely sitting in a roll out. Other details that I love in this space is the arch entry and how the top of the lockers mirror the arch as well as the fab light fixture (don’t be afraid to hang something really hip in your mud room, you will enjoy seeing it everyday).
This design maximizes every inch of space right up to the ceiling with a little bling. Customized for the client’s family size and architecturally pleasing. Below, one reader has no space but a closet, she describes as a train wreck. We discussed; purging, putting off season items in storage containers and hanging some coats in her front closet to make room for this beauty. For some helpful tips on organizing your mud room read this article from Suite 101.
Don’t be alarmed at the next mud room; some of my clients that have separate rooms like this one, want their kids to be able to see everything (unlike me who makes everyone put everything away LOL). This is a fun way to teach kids about organization and get them involved in the daily process.
Now, on to those double-duty mud rooms. A few readers wrote in about how, based on lack of available space in their house, that they have to put the washer and dryer or home office in the same space. One even sent in a picture that she asked me not to share, yes it was a scary site. I really don’t have a problem with this concept when designed efficiently. A stackable version will give you more flexibility and the home office can be built in like this one below or a combination where a desk is free-standing and lockers are built in.
In closing I wanted to share a simple version for a reader that has a nearby closet for coats and shoes, needing only minimal storage and a place to sit. Love the vintage charm. I hope I answered everyone’s questions about mud rooms and provided the inspiration you were looking for to start your project! Send pictures!