1. The Coat Rack
The coat rack is a mudroom essential. The two go together like mustard and mayo, peanut butter and jelly, butter and toast. They’re inextricable. (Without a coat rack, is a mudroom even a mudroom? Without a mudroom, is a coat rack even a coat rack? These are the questions that keep us up at night.) Shown above, a warm, wood-paneled mudroom features a coat rack for coats, hats and leash, a bench for sitting and putting on shoes and baskets for umbrellas, shoes and other drop-off items.
The rustic-minimalist aesthetic featured in the mudroom above is actually just a few steps away from being featured in your mudroom. First, look to the walls. (If you’ve already got wood plank walls, skip this step!) If your walls are white or light, go warmer; the dark wood panels above set the tone for the entire room. It may even be worth it to install a decorative wood wall (if you really want the exact look). From there, the rest is easy: Hang up a simple coat rack (a single line of hooks will do), and place a bench directly underneath it!
2. Under-Bench Storage
The mudroom is usually small (there’s really no reason for it to be big – its one main purpose is to “transition” you from the outside in), so you’ll have to be sneaky about storage. Pictured above, three baskets fit perfectly under the bench and fit right in with the room stylistically. The baskets are also perfect for storage – for shoes, sandals and bags; designate one basket for each item type!Now let’s talk about the hat display: It rocks. Just looking at the mudroom above, you get a sense of a rustic-chic, vintage vibe – mostly thanks to the hats. If you’re a hat-wearer, a hat rack makes an easy grab-and-go option. But even if you’re not, it’s a great way to add personality to a space. To get the look, you’ll need to install wall hooks; here, there’s eight, installed in zigzag lines. (Use a zigzag formation as opposed to straight lines for a more relaxed look.) Don’t leave too much space between the hooks. (Notice how the brims overlap? That’s on purpose!) Choose similar hats in the same color family, hang them up, and your mudroom’s ready to win the award for “Most Creative!”
3. Shelf Display
Think of the mudroom as like the breakroom of the home. There should be some form of storage furniture to hold your everyday things and a comfortable place to sit. Optional accessories include a mirror (just to check your appearance before leaving the house), decorative throw pillows and planters. Pictured above, tall bookcases line a bench and provide plenty of space for shoes and pet leashes. Also note the basket and tray – excellent for holding sunglasses, keys, money clips and more. The best part about the look, though, is the storage bench. Instead of a bulky “hope chest” design where the entire bench is solid on all sides and built more like a trunk than a bench, most storage benches today (like the one pictured here) are slimmer and more small space-friendly.
Pictured above, a storage bench has room for drawers and an open space underneath. Use the drawers for anything you need in a hurry – whether it’s on-the-go travel items like sunscreen, moisturizer or makeup, or bigger items like scarves, gloves or water bottles. As for the open space underneath, that’s best reserved for shoes!
What Is a Mudroom?
When you first enter the house, it’s where you go to kick off your shoes, hang up your bag, coat and hat and drop off your umbrella. When you leave the house, it’s where you put on your shoes and grab your bag, coat, hat and umbrella. It’s also usually where the dog bed is (and where Fido spends the majority of his time). Entering a home, it’s the room right after the front door and right before the rest of the house – always there when you need it, yet out of the way enough to not take up too much space.