As an interior designer in Seattle, I know Northwesterners embrace the season of rain with an eye on the Mudroom. Starting with umbrellas, wet, dirty shoes and backpacks, this is where the family sheds their stuff and gets down and dirty. The mudroom is more important than ever with today’s busy families and with so much more to organize.
Organizational Center for Busy Households
The majority of homes today have a transition area from the outdoors. Some are large and some are not. But the mudroom of today is much more than its predecessor. It now functions as the organizational center for busy households. It can also serve as the laundry room, pet center and craft area. The mudroom is a full-featured permanent part of new home construction and remodeling. It is estimated that 3% of the home floor space dedicates its use to the mudroom.
A full room, while nice, isn’t essential to making it work for you. What is essential is a design to store stuff like:
Backpacks and briefcases
Hats and gloves
Sports equipment and small toys
Dog leashes and towels for cleaning dirty feet
Messages, sport or lesson schedules
How to design for so many functions? Regardless of the size or style of the mudroom, innovation and practicality are indispensable. Here are a few basic steps to get going.
What is absolutely essential? Who uses the area? What do they bring in and need on a daily basis? How does the space relate to other needs, i.e. laundry? Do you need a half-bath adjacent to the mudroom?
Assess the existing space. De-clutter and determine available space. Add seating to remove dirty shoes, a storage bench, a small chest of drawers or a desk. Use shelves or hooks with cubbies for storage. Mirrors are great for last minute touch ups plus add dimension to the space.
Measure and plan. How does it all fit in? Draw the room to scale as it gives perspective.
Take action. Will you do the work yourself or hire a designer? A fresh approach provides new ideas.
If the mudroom is a multipurpose room, consider these options:
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