I have always wanted a mudroom, and I "ooh and ahh" over the beautiful Pinterest pictures of fabulous mudrooms and wish that I could have one in my house. This would be my dream.
But, alas, I have a tiny coat closet in my foyer with a rod and a shelf. One night, when I had enough of the kids telling me they couldn’t fit their backpacks in the closet and the vacuum falling over again and the coats and scarfs and hats and gloves getting eaten by the dog, I decided to make a plan. Since I was very frustrated, I forgot to take a picture of said closet. Just imagine it looked something like this.
First, I took everything out of the closet. I actually moved most of our coats upstairs to our very unused guest closet. We live in the desert, and we don’t need very many nor very warm coats for much of the year. But I put everything else on the floor.
Next, I checked out everything we had in this space. Cleaning supplies, backpacks, coats, winter accessories, extra bags, and more. Then I made a list of what I wish my dream mudroom could hold. I wanted space for:
1. School backpacks
2. Mops, brooms, and a vacuum
3. Winter accessories accessible for each family member
4. Extra bags for toting things around town
5. A place for items that need to be donated
6. A place for items that need to be returned to stores or people
7. A few hooks for one or two coats per person
8. A place for items that we need to use soon but that shouldn’t sit on the kitchen counter for days on end
9. A place for current projects
10. My work bag
It was a lot to ask of a little space. I bought some shelves. These to be exact. And some command strips. And some bins. Then, I started to slowly put things back in the closet. First the cleaning supplies, then the shelves, then the bins. Then I went a little crazy with Washi tape and my label maker. I used the vertical space in the closet for things only the grown-ups need to reach and the space closer to the floor for the kids. I tried to keep the floor space fairly empty for the times when I have extra stuff to shove inside. And now for the final reveal.
It is working super well for all of us. The kids are putting their backpacks and coats away everyday, and the hubs and I are doing the same. I love having a place to keep everything that needs to be returned and a donation box that is easy to get to. Since I couldn't build a dream mudroom into this house, this mini-mudroom will do the trick!