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laundry room mud room

The mud room is a busy place, especially in the winter. Here are some ways to keep your mud room an organized and efficient space.

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Mud rooms are where you store dirty shoes and wet jackets, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be organized and well designed. Here are six ways to keep your mudroom clean and looking great.

Emphasize storage

Whether your mud room consists of just a narrow corridor or you have an entire room to work with, it’s important to put storage first. Basic storage necessities include hooks for hanging jackets and bags, bins for shoes, a tub for umbrellas, and shelving for hats and scarves.

Depending on your family’s needs, you’ll also want to incorporate storage for sports gear, like bats, balls, and sticks. Built-in storage areas offer the best use of space, but portable storage options can work just as well.

Think small

Encourage kids to stop dirt in its tracks by designing a mud room with them in mind. Create kid-sized spots for shoes and boots at ground level, and install coat and backpack hooks at appropriate kid height. Kids will be much more likely to keep the mud room tidy when they can reach storage areas without having to ask for help.

Use durable flooring

Since they bridge the gap between indoors and outdoors, mud rooms can intercept a lot of dirt and moisture. Do yourself a favor and install a floor that can handle the unique situation. Instead of carpet, which can become soggy and damaged from heavy use, consider vinyl or ceramic tile flooring.

 

Designed for heavily used areas, these flooring types are easy to clean and maintain, so they make organization a breeze. Opt for low-VOC adhesives and materials to ensure a healthy option for your family, even in small spaces.

Add long lasting mats

If updating your flooring isn’t in the budget, consider adding a durable rug or mat instead. For mud rooms, you’ll want a mat that can attract and collect dirt and pollen before they make their way to the rest of the house.

Though a disposable mat will work in a pinch, consider buying a pricier wool mat instead. In addition to resisting moisture and bacteria, wool is easy to clean. Choose a rug with a vibrant, colorful pattern that will help mask dirt.

Protect the walls

Mudrooms can show signs of wear and tear quickly if you’re not careful. Keep the walls looking brand new year-round by adding inexpensive wood paneling coated with semi-gloss paint. The paneling adds a protective layer to your drywall, and the semi-gloss paint lends a durable sheen that’s easier to clean and maintain.

With this combination, you won’t have to worry about mud or scratches making your mud room look disorganized.

Stay clean

Keep dirt and dust from being tracked into the house by creating a clean zone in the mudroom. If you have a plumbing hookup, install a sink for washing hands, or keep it simple by stocking towels, handwipes, and hand sanitizer.

From utilitarian to stylish, mud rooms have plenty of potential. Use these tips to keep your mud room organized, and your family can use and enjoy the space for years to come.

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Resources:

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/photos/0,,20357833,00.html

http://www.hgtv.com/remodel/interior-remodel/mudroom-flooring-options

 

 

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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.