Did you know that about 80 percent of the dirt on your floor comes tracked inside by your feet? Here's a guide to building a mudroom and keeping slushy boots and wet umbrellas where they belong.
If your winter has looked anything like mine here in the northeast, you're dealing with weekly snowstorms complete with muddy Wellies
, soggy mittens, and lots of wet, dirty outdoor gear coming and going. It can create quite a mess if you don't have a system in place.
Building a mudroom not only creates a pretty entryway for your home, but it's a practical means of keeping winter's elements from trailing through the house.
We consulted with Sabrina Soto, Target Style Expert for Home
and host of HGTV's "Get it Sold
," the popular show in which she uses her organizing and decorating expertise to stage homes for potential buyers.
Sabrina shares her tips below for how to makeover even the smallest space into a practical, inviting mudroom.
Organizing pro Sabrina Soto. Photo: HGTV
-- Any space will work
: No matter the size, any entry can serve as a mud room as long as you assign everything a place to live and make the space comfortable and functional. "It's important to keep this space organized and tidy as it is the first part of your home that guests will see," says Sabrina.
-- Clear out your space and de-clutter
: Before you start this project, it helps to clear out the entryway to define what space you have to work with and see what the limitations of the area are. Do a careful edit of what you need and what stuff has just landed there over time.
-- Build your mud room with the essentials
: Carefully choose furniture that's the right scale for your space. A seating area and loads of storage bins for accessories are must-have tools for a mudroom. Sabrina suggests this entryway bench
with built-in storage. The bench solves so many clutter problems in one storage piece.
-- Create a system and stick to it.
Create enough storage space for every family member; color-coding is an easy way to organize bins for each family member. Don't over-clutter your mud room with furniture pieces that are too big or don't add function to the space.Maintain the mudroom to prevent it from becoming a catchall space.
ELEMENTS OF A MUDROOM
Here's a list of specific elements that Sabrina likes to pull into a mudroom. You can pick and choose which elements best suit your needs. Also, check out these stylish product picks, coutesy of the design minds over at ShelterPop
Click over to ShelterPop for some fashion-forward mudroom product picks. Photos: from top left, clockwise: Etsy, Audio Video Furniture, Amazon, Pier 1 Imports, Anthropologie
-- Console table: A console table is a perfect landing spot for keys and provides a surface for a lamp, since mud rooms often need extra lighting to liven up the space. If you don't have space for a table, you could always substitute a floor or ceiling lamp and hooks for hanging keys.
-- Wall hooks: Simple, sturdy wall hooks keep umbrellas, coats, hats, bags, and even keys off the floor and within reach. Hooks offer the customization that each family member may need to keep them organized. Kid's hooks should be hung low so they can reach and help keep their belongings neat.
-- Mirror: A simple design trick in a small space is to hang a mirror at eye level, as mirrors give the illusion that a space is larger. Bonus: a mirror in your entry provides an easy spot to check your makeup as you head out the door.
-- Shelf with bins: No space for a bench? Maybe a shelf with bins for hats, gloves, and accessories is a better fit for your mud room.
-- Boot trays: Protect your floors from wet boots with a couple boot trays.
-- Door mat: Every entry needs a door mat to catch dirt before it comes in on your shoes.
-- Umbrella stand: You want a place for everything - your keys, mail, and umbrellas.
What's in your mudroom? Tell us in the comments below!
Mudroom Ideas for a Small Space (ShelterPop)
HGTV Dream Home 2011: Mudroom Pictures (HGTV)
Mudroom Designs (Houzz)