Tweaking the Mudroom - Part 1

I believe I last left you with the mudroom looking something like this. To quote all HGTV design stars, it was "a hot mess".

We were still in the process of unpacking and Dave's parents were still in the process of moving out. After getting their freezer, the dolly and other random things out of there, we were able to really take a good look at the room and determine how it would work best for us.

Excuse the wet floor in the photo below (I had just mopped!)

Dave's parents used to have hooks and a shelf on the wall opposite the washer/dryer (roughly over the 2 coolers in the photo below) but they moved them over to their new house and we didn't want to just automatically put some new hooks back up in the exact same spot. We wanted to live here a bit and figure out what would make sense for us. Once we spent a few days here, we realized that it was too crowded to have our coats hanging there opposite that cleaning closet door and we might easily knock them down when we were doing laundry (kind of like when we had hooks in our narrow laundry room in our old house).

So we spent a few more weeks brainstorming what would be the best option for this "mudroom". Dave was convinced we should do absolutely nothing then someday just tear out all the walls and turn the whole business into an open back porch and relocate the washer and dryer to the basement or something but I told him he better come up with a temporary solution because coats, bags, shoes, etc. were taking over our kitchen table, sofa, floors, etc. And everysingletime we had to leave the house I had to spend an extra 10 minutes that I could not spare roaming around the house in a complete panic trying to figure out where I last put my coat, purse, keys, Levi's coat, shoes, etc. because since there really was no place for that stuff I didn't ever set it down in the same spot. It was chaos, I tell ya!

Finally I got Dave on board with the idea of building some shelves and/or installing some hooks. And I gathered some inspirational photos from Pinterest (where else??)

We loved the fun bright colors of this mudroom but Dave thought those baskets underneath the bench wouldn't be all that handy. Plus if we wanted to keep shoes in there, they'd get each other dirty, jumbled up into a big mess inside the tub.

I loved the closed cabinets in this photo. And the thought that I could keep "pantry" type items like the wheat buckets, wheat grinder, etc. out there too.

We both loved the baskets on shelves in this photo and the beadboard.

We also contemplated DIY-ing a hook system out of random items like the following two photos. But we couldn't really find enough inspiring random items around the house...

And we loved the shoe shelves underneath the bench, shown below.

But since we just moved, and we're starting a business and have no jobs, money is an issue. So we pretty much gave up on these ideas at that point. We walked downstairs to build a fire in the wood stove, fully planning to sink into a deep dark depression and that's when I saw this:

An entire mudroom unit. Already built. By my father-in-law years ago. (Have I ever mentioned how thankful I am that I married into this handy family??? Seriously!!!) It was exactly what I wanted. In the basement of the home we're living in. Hmmmm...

All I can say is that it didn't take long for me to convince David to carefully unscrew it from the basement wall and move it upstairs. (Note that Dave's parents often used a basement door as a point of entry, but for us, I don't think we ever have...so it just makes way more sense to have this thing upstairs now.)

We then had to make a couple runs to his brother's house to pick up a handful of our DIY tools and to his sister's house to pick up her husband's air nailer and then we got to work. I have to admit that it was a lot of fun doing a project like this with my honey again. It's been a while...

It was a bit tricky finding studs to screw into behind the wood paneling, but it worked out in the end.

Here David was holding up one of the shelving units so we could decide exactly where to place it.

Here both units had been installed.

Here we were adding the top shelf back on, along with the trim pieces.

We stayed up till midnight that night, but by the time we went to bed, we had a fully functioning mudroom unit with hooks and shelves. I was SO thrilled. As I said before, we'd been living in chaos not knowing where our coats were, etc.

The next day I ran out to Lowe's and picked up a couple items so we could "beautify" the unit. 

First thing I got was a 4 x 8 sheet of pre-primed beadboard for like $14. I had them cut it into (2) 4 ft x 4 ft pieces. Much to my dismay, once we were out in the parking lot, I couldn't get them in my car!!! Ah! So I carried my sick, screaming, hungry little one year old back into the store, dragging a huge cart behind us and had the guy cut my beadboard down yet again, into (6) 16" x 48" strips. Then they fit in the car. Hallelujah! I was so thankful cuz I don't think Levi would have put up with much more time at Lowe's!! 

Now, I'm sure you're wondering what we were going to do with the beadboard. We had decided to put the beadboard on the sides of the shelving units to cover up the MDF.

I also picked up (2) 8 ft long pieces of crown mold (for about $18), just like we used on the cabinets in our old house's laundry room.

After a morning of work, getting everything just right, Dave got the crown mold and the beadboard up and I added some cute baskets that we already owned to the shelves. So now it is super functional and starting to feel more like us.

As soon as I get up the motivation, and decide on colors, I'm going to paint the unit and we might possibly get some new hooks or spray paint the existing ones oil rubbed bronze. And we will either put wood filler on the face of the shelves before painting them or put an 1 1/2" thick face frame (from scrap wood lying around) on them to make the shelves look chunkier and cuter.

And we're planning to maybe build a bench with shoe storage under it, kind of like in that last Pinterest photo, to go directly under this unit.

In fact, I have an antique table that is completely broken and we've considered just burning that we may actually repurpose as the seat and legs for the bench. Just not sure yet...As soon as we figure it all out, I'll be back with a Part 2 to this post.

In the meantime, does anyone have any suggestions on paint colors for the unit? We've talked about painting it all white, all black, or white with a colorful punch inside the cubbies, like pale green, orange or even bright red, etc. I need help deciding!!!

And I'd love to paint the wood paneling in the whole room but not sure when that will happen. That would definitely be a Part 3 to this post. ;) 

And while I'm daydreaming, just thought I'd share that it is kind of my dream to add a fun, cheerful little sunroom type sitting area to the one end of this back porch to enjoy sunny summer days, kind of like these wildly inspiring photos:

Well, that's all for now. I'll hopefully be back very soon with Part 2 of the Mudroom tweaking projects. Stay tuned. . .


Anonymous said...

Wow! You and David are literally amazing! It's cool to see how you are re-imagining the back porch. Personally, I think the shelving unit would look great painted white, cream or light gray with the backs painted any of the colors you suggested. I think green would help bring the outdoors in. Margy

freshnewday said...

It is looking SO good already! You guys are amazing!

iheartorganizing said...

Great inspiration photos and I love what you have going on!

Feel free to pop over pictures when the project is done, I would love to see the end result!


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