Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Empty Hallway to Organized, Beautiful Mudroom

Do you ever get tired of hearing the sound of your own voice? I know I do! "Pick up your bag, please." "Honey, take off your shoes." "Why are their leaves all over the kitchen floor again?!" I don't mind doing housework and keeping things tidy, but I insist that my family members do their share and I try to make sure we're all working smarter, not harder. After all, I don't want to feel like a broken record and I'd rather be having fun together than cleaning all the time or surfing through endless stacks of shoes, papers and coats. Enter my back hallway.
Talk about wasted space. Before I cleaned for this picture it was basically a collect-all for baskets of dirty laundry (the gated door leads into the laundry room and cat box) and broken-down cardboard boxes for recycling. Oh, and book bags, piles of dirty shoes and other paraphernalia. The doorway I'm standing in to take the picture leads into the garage, and the door to the right of where I'm standing leads into the kitchen. 

This is the entryway that most of our guests and our family use to enter (even though we have a perfectly beautiful foyer, we're pretty informal). So the first impression on entering our home was of dirty cat box smells, piles of recycling and dirty laundry. Oh and dirty floors because a certain hubby insisted his shoes were cold if he left them out in the garage. It was driving me crazy and no matter how often I cleaned or how frequently I nagged this hallway always returned to the same messy state. And the mess usually spilled over into my kitchen.

So over Christmas break this year my hubby and I agreed on an action plan that we could all follow through on and put it into place. Because training the kids is the easy party. Getting your spouse on board takes some negotiating.
My hubby built the custom bench and hook boards using scrap wood from other woodworking projects. I created the no-sew bench cushion using a staple gun, a leftover sheet of plywood, 3" foam, batting and outdoor, washable material from Jo-Ann's. Check out this great tutorial from Honey We're Home. The rag runner is from jcpenney.com. The canvas pictures of our family I've collected over time as CanvasPeople.com has their free 8x10 photo canvas sales.
And this silver tub holds our library books. Finally, everyone knows where they go and where to find them! Each family member has a plastic bin labeled with their initial to hold shoes. I love that these are plastic and not fabric as their shoes are always muddy and we can just hose the buckets out. I also loved the price (just $5 each at Target!) and the bright colors.
This is the boys' spot across from the bench for hanging their coats and bags. The hooks are right at their eye level and they have plenty of space. Originally I was going to glue down the letters for their names but they have so much fun playing with them I just left them as they are. Plus the two-year-old is learning how to spell his name.

For guests, we're going to add a second, higher row of hooks on the kids' wall. I'm also going to install these boot trays below the shoe bench to store guests' shoes when needed. We can slide them back under the bench out of sight when they're not in use. So far I've tried two different stores and they've been out of boot trays. I've heard from a friend that she got hers at the Container Store for under $10 each.

Here are some closeups of the bench in case you're interested in making something similar.
I love how it looks and feels like furniture, versus a built-in.
 And the final touch...a little felt basket for slippers ($11 clearance at Target). Shoes off; slippers on. Aaah. Now you're home.
 One last look. Notice the Wallflower plug-in on the left. Replaces the cat and sneakers smell with eucalyptus mint. :-) For the future we'll also be adding blinds to the window to help with heating and cooling. This might just be my favorite room of the house now. Here's a "before" and "after."
Follow up post: controlling the paperwork chaos. Organizing letters, bills, mail, etc at the door.

Thanks to Natasha at Serenity You for featuring this post!

36 comments:

  1. Thanks for leaving a lovely comment on my blog - following you back !
    Love your new look hallway - off to check out some of your recipes !

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  2. Hello! Found your post over at Strictly Homemade and am LOVIN' your entryway! It looks AWESOME!

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  3. Thank you ladies, glad you were able to stop by!

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  4. A-mazing! You did such a great job!

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    1. Aww, thanks for stopping by Jenny. You made my day. :)

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  5. Saw your post at Adventures of a DIY Mom and had to stop by to say hello! I love your mudroom! I have that basket too! I have a bench I bought at Goodwill that needs a cushion on top, now I know how to make one. Where did you buy your foam...I know it can be expensive. I am your newest follower. Please stop by my blog to say hello! I love to make new bloggy friends, comments and followers :) Heather @ settingforfour.blogspot.com

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    1. Hi Heather. I got the foam at Jo-Ann Fabrics. I lucked out and the foam was 50% off while I was doing this project. But they run those deals and have good coupons all the time. Love your blog. I'm a follower!

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  6. This is really nice! I love the bench and all the fun colors!

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  7. Gotta love an organized entryway! I know so, because I recently re-arranged my own entry way:) Thank you for visiting my pink coffee tables (fyi, I used a colored window privacy film on those)

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  8. What a great use of space. It must make you feel so good to transform a virtually unused space to a space where life is organized and orderly {that would be my dream come true}. I just followed you back!

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  9. great job. love the plastic bins!!

    Natasha xxxx

    www.serenityyou.blogspot.com

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  10. What a great use of space and I LOVE the colors. It really brightened up that spot! Great job.

    And thank you for stopping by! I am following you as well.

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  11. Great Job! I just recently re-did my foyer for exactly the same reason - I was sick of it being a dumping ground for shoes etc...

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  12. This is really great! I wish (wish, wish!) I had a space like that!
    suchakingdom.blogspot.com
    I'm now following your blog. : )

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  13. What a great use of this space! Love the colors too! Thanks for dropping by, I'm happily following you back!

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  14. Love how it turned out!! Finally a worthy place to put my shoes at your place!

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    1. Har, har. :-) I got your msg last night. Insane day. Will call you back today.

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  15. This is a fantastic mudroom! Love the bench with all the colorful bins! THanks for visiting my blog and following me. I'm trying to follow you, but I can't get the "following" to load. I'll try again later.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Danni. Let me know if you have any more trouble getting it to work. Have a great weekend!

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  16. Wow, this transformation is great. I love all the organization ...and the slippers basketbis perfect too.

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  17. I love the functional bench with all the storage and seating. Beautiful colors too. Please come share at the Anything Goes linky at Bacon Time, if you have not already.

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  18. Oh!! I love it. I need to do something like this. Thanks so much for sharing at Terrific Tuesdays.
    Rachel
    adventuresofadiymom.blogspot.com

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  19. Love this!! Looks awesome. Your naked space looks amazing. Tell hubby he did a great job too!!

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  20. This is such a creative idea. I would love for you to stop by and Link up at my Link Party via: www.ourdelightfulhome.blogspot.com

    Mrs. Delightful
    www.ourdelightfulhome.blogspot.com

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  21. Saw your post on Not Just a Housewife love how this turned out. Can't wait to see what you have planned next.

    Carrie
    http://carriecreativehome.blogspot.com

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  22. Wow - what a great makeover!

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  23. love this!!!

    Featuring this today on Serenity Saturday link party!!!

    Natasha xxx

    www.serenityyou.blogspot.com

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    1. Awesome, thanks Natasha! You're the best!

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  24. I love this! and wish we had the space for it! great job!

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  25. Great way simple way to tranform a space.

    http://www.customclosetstexas.com/blog-0/

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  26. If you still don't have them, I got my boot trays at Bed Bath and Beyond.

    Thanks for the read. Great job!

    April
    nginerd at gmail dot com

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    1. Thank you April! I see them on their Web site. I'll stop into the store and see if I can snag two. It's time for spring mud so they may have them out.

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  27. Love this! What a great idea and decorated so nicely. :)

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  28. Love the bench, your hubby is very talented. The whole space looks great, bright and cheery.

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    1. Isn't he though? I'm a lucky girl. :-) Thanks for stopping by!

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