Wouldn’t it be nice if we could snap our fingers and magically have projects completed? [insert big sigh here] There are so very, very many projects that need to be done at the Dream House: gardens need to be planted, bees need to be tended (children too), art work needs to be hung on walls, and rooms need to be decorated. In the case of the mudroom, which is a complete blank slate, we are long on plans and short on time. But that doesn’t stop me from dreaming. On the contrary, I know pretty much exactly what I want our mudroom to look like when it’s finished…whenever that might be! I want to keep the mudroom fairly neutral and natural. I want it to be bright, clean, and well-organized. If I could wake up tomorrow to a finished mudroom, here are the features I would want it to have…
- a paneled wall, painted white: While the house was still under construction, my husband mentioned that he wanted to install horizontal paneling in the mudroom (someday) and paint it white. And I thought, “Good grief, I’ve married a genius!” I love the idea and think it will add brightness and a subtle, understated texture to the room. (photo from Dandee Designs)
- double wall hooks: In my last post, I said, “The more hooks, the better.” And seriously, I think that’s my new mantra. I want not one, but two rows of double hooks so that coats, scarves, hats, and backpacks have a place to go that isn’t the floor. (photo from Home Depot)
- lower baskets: We already have five baskets and just need one more so that everyone has a place to store sunglasses or frisbees or stuffed animals or sunscreen–all those little odds and ends that need corralling. (photo from Pottery Barn)
- a long bench with room for storage: A nice bench (ours will mostly likely be homemade) provides a place for those storage baskets to go and gives everyone a place to sit to put on shoes. (photo fromPottery Barn)
- vinyl flooring that looks like rustic barnwood: I love the look of hardwood flooring. We put it in our entryway and dining room, and it looks beautiful. But the mudroom floor gets pretty messy, especially during our muddy Oregon winters. I love that this vinyl floor is ridiculous tough, super easy to clean, and really nice looking. It really does look like rustic barnwood; I’ve even started using our sample piece to take pictures on for my blog, and you can’t tell at all! (photo fromMetroflor)
One of my favorite things about the Dream House is the mudroom. Our old house didn’t have anything like a mudroom. The laundry room was basically a hallway, and the back door went straight into the kitchen. Our only options for jackets, backpacks, and muddy boots were the garage and just inside the front door, and neither of those is an ideal option. When we started looking at floor plans for the Dream House, a spacious mudroom was at the top of the list of must haves. Now our mudroom has the potential to be one of my favorite rooms in the whole house! It’s location is perfect: it is accessible from the front yard, the backyard, the garage, and the kitchen. It’s size is generous: there’s enough room for storing both the things we’re currently using and out-of-season items. And it’s incredibly useful: wood-look vinyl flooring and a big utility sink make cleanup a breeze.
Right now, the mudroom is still very much a blank slate. It’s technically finished: flooring, trim, paint, utilities, etc. are all installed and good to go. But we haven’t personalized it at all or added any of the things to it that we want or plan to add. We’re still trying to figure out what storage needs we have and how to best meet those needs. While we figure that out, I’m having a great time looking for mudroom inspiration. There are some gorgeous mudrooms out there with genius storage ideas. Here are a few examples that I’ve fallen in love with so far…
You’ll probably notice some similarities in all of these mudroom pictures. #1–upper storage: Some have cabinets, some have cubbies, but all of these fantastic mudroom ideas have upper storage options. This is a great place to add a few decorative touches, or to keep items that don’t get used every day. #2–hooks: In our current mudroom state, jackets, bags, and hats end up scattered across the floor. The more hooks the better, in my opinion. Installing a couple of rows of hooks or pegs will make a huge difference and keep everything looking shipshape. We actually bought a dozen inexpensive, heavy duty double hooks right after we moved in, we just haven’t gotten around to installing them yet! #3–lower storage: whether we go with cubbies, baskets, or bins, a designated place for balls, outside toys, shoes, and boots is invaluable.
The organizer in me is ridiculously excited to get our dream mudroom underway and organized. Do you guys have any great tips for mudroom storage or organization, anything that works especially well for your family? I’d love to hear!
Trend: Clever Storage Ideas For Your Outdoor Space
The web is the perfect space to find organizing ideas for your home and life. So many talented people out there with wonderful (and sometimes crazy) ideas. Below you’ll find 10 DIY’s to organize your backyard or any outdoor space this Spring. There are organizing solutions for tool storage, all the way to kid toy storage. I’m really love the combo potting and party table (the first image below). Use it for your everyday planting needs, then switch it over to a party table when your friends come over! Perfect.
I love this dual purpose potting table/party table, from Dream Green DIY.
Hide those ugly AC units (or garbage cans) with this DIY, from HousePet.
Make a outdoor storage coffee table with a giant bucket and some wood, from A Place to Nest.
With a bit of paint and time you can turn an old boring plastic storage bench into THIS lovely piece of storage furniture, from I Heart Organizing.
Use two vintage coat hooks to store your hose, from BHG.
Make this mini garden box for all your hand tools and place it right in your garden, from The Family Handyman.
Create this outdoor bar (with wine glass storage) for your backyard entertaining, from Life Designed.
While this isn’t exactly an outdoor storage solution, this DIY Curved Bench will be the perfect spot to sit once your backyard is all organized, from A Beautiful Mess.
Did you find any projects that you want to recreate? I sure did. Happy organizing to you!
- Chelsey, The Paper Mama
I have always been a bit of a storage “junkie” as one would say. Not only do I love the process of organizing, I love beautiful and stylish containers. What I don’t love is the impact that storage can have on my wallet. Therefore, whenever I take on an organizing project, my first step is to brainstorm ways to create my own storage using materials I typically have on hand. Most often times, a little creative thinking and resourcefulness allows me to DIY beautiful solutions on a budget. And I am always up for the crafty challenge!
I have DIY’d a lot of storage over the years, and I typically find myself reaching for many of the same items over and over again.
Boxes come in many shapes and sizes; the boxes I find myself using most frequently are shoe boxes and cereal boxes. Pair the boxes with paint, decorative paper or fabric, and you have a high end look on a crafty budget.
The boxes above were given a few coats of paint and the edges were gilded with gold. Below, boxes were covered in fabric to create a canvas effect.
Don’t throw away those oatmeal canisters, cereal boxes or soup cans! They all can be upcycled as storage throughout the home.
Mason jar storage has gone viral over the years. They can be used to corral anything itty bitty. However, if you don’t have any mason jars on hand, head to the recycling bin and use any glass jar. With a little paint, they can be crafted to look like storage purchased at your favorite home good store. And they work great for holding anything from cotton in the bathroom to nuts and bolts in the garage.
Maybe I typed too soon. Mason jars and pegboard may have to battle it out for title of Most Versatile Storage Solution. I love using pegboard all over our home to keep commonly used items within arm’s reach. Pegboard in the laundry room organizes sewing supplies, in the craft room it organizes gift wrapping and crafting tools, while in the garage it organizes utility items.
Pictures frames work wonders for displaying your favorite memories, but their functionality doesn’t have to stop there. If you have a few extras on hand, or pick some up at your local thrift store, they can be used to hold pegboard, decorative sheet metal and even canvas pockets to create stylish and practical wall storage solutions.
Simple hardware can also be added to a common photo frame to create a beautiful, decorative tray!
Unfinished wood crates can be purchased extremely inexpensively at local home improvement and craft stores, and with a little paint and/or hardware, you can put them to work all around your abode. Add casters to create pull out shoe storage, or cut them in half to create slim wall organizers!
Say farewell to paper clutter! Magazine files organize magazines, mail, school papers, books, newspapers and stationery. Because they are slim, they can also slide into pantries and linen closets to organize awkwardly shaped items in a sleek and stylish way.
Thicker rope paired with thread or hot glue can be used to create baskets, while softer rope is perfect for embellishing containers and for creating storage bin handles.
Fabric can be sewn into organizational pouches, pockets and baskets. It is also the key to making recycled boxes, food containers and jars look top notch.
Just as I utilize beautiful fabrics for covering boxes, paper can do the same. I also love to use decorative wallpaper, gift wrap and scrapbook paper to line bookcases, drawers and trays.
Storage does not have to be expensive to be beautiful. Using common household items as storage is not only easy on the pocketbook, it also promotes recycling. All you need is a little glue along with some lovely fabric or paper and you are well on your way to high end storage on a shoe string budget.
It seems that each year I make a resolution to simplify our laundry routine. With a family of five, laundry piles tend form in the blink of an eye. However, there are a few things we have done that have really streamlined our process. For example, our dirty clothes go straight to the washer each day, we only sort out linens and delicate pieces. Over-sorting was causing multiple piles that needed attention at once and quickly cluttered our laundry zone. Another step that has helped us is to always keep extra hangers in the laundry room so we can fold and place items on hangers the moment they come out of the dryer. And finally, each member of the family has a small stackable basket that remains next to our dryer, so once the clothing comes out and is folded, it can be placed into each member’s basket to be put away.
Although over-sized laundry rooms are dreamy, there are many ways to organize and maximize a small laundry nook or closet to make it just as functional as a larger space.
The laundry alcove above is only a few feet wide, yet the storage is truly maximized to create an ultra-functional place to wash and fold laundry. Let’s take a closer look at some super simple ways to make the most of a small laundry space.
1. The optimal solution for maximizing storage is to go vertical. Consider adding rows of shelving that span all the way to the ceiling. Cabinets are a great alternative if the goal is to conceal visual clutter.
2. Create a stain removal tray. Research solutions for removing common household stains such as grass stains, wine spills, wax spots, makeup, etc… Put together a small bin or tray with a stain removal reference guide and correlating cleaners and store above the washer and dryer. This will allow you to treat the stain on the spot and increases the odds of saving your clothing, upholstery and carpets.
3. Install a hanging valet for your clothing. Whether hanging a delicate item to be washed separately or providing a place to air dry a blouse, a simple retractable rod saves space while adding hanging functionality.
4. A benefit of open shelving is that you can quickly see and access your items. Selecting wire baskets or clear bins to corral smaller products, will also take away from the guessing game.
5. Create a cleaning caddy for your home. By using a single bin or tote to transport your cleaning supplies from room to room, you cut down on the number of trips back to the cleaning cabinet.
6. Install a space saving ironing board holder on a nearby wall or over the laundry room door. Many of the amazing options also come with added storage for spray starch and distilled water.
7. Add a decorative basket to the top of the washer/dryer area for delicate items that must be washed separately.
8. Install a counter across the washer and dryer to provide a solid surface for storage and folding items straight out of the dryer.
Bonus tip: Decant your laundry detergents and cleaners into decorative storage containers to create a streamlined, clean look. Manufacturer’s product labels and colors quickly create visual clutter that take away from the esthetics of the space.