Clutter goes a long way, especially in a small space. Though small spaces force us to think a bit more creatively, the good news is that a little foresight, planning and careful editing can go a long way toward making a tiny space solve a lot of problems.
A tiny but efficient mudroom can help you feel prepared for whatever the day may hold. "It's a transitional space," says professional organizer Ruthann Betz-Essinger of Just Organized. "You can pare it down to just those things that go in and out of a home."
Think about your own habits and those you want to foster. Even if your space is tight, a couple of creative tricks can solve a lot of issues.
Add grab-and-go storage
Designate a spot for the inevitable bags and jackets. "Families can create a ‘drop zone’ in any small space by pairing a storage bench and wall hooks," says interior designer Traci Zeller.
"Functionality comes first," says interior designer Molly Quinn. "It’s really helpful to stand in the space and go about your daily routine so you can figure out where you want to hang your keys, where you want to put on and take off shoes." Accordion-style wall hooks, a small coat rack or a vintage hall tree can corral bags, hats and jackets. Include a stool and tuck a basket nearby or underneath for necessities.
Make it one of a kind
If you need something more tailored, have built-in cabinetry made to fit. "Because I needed to use every inch of space in our own mudroom and I wanted everyone to have their own spot, I had a locker unit custom-made in the limited space we had," says Zeller.
A small horizontal space can yield great opportunities for storage if you have vertical tiers of storage. The lower the tier, the more immediate need for the item; the higher, the more occasional. "If you place out-of-season items in bins up high, they're still there and at hand when you need them," says Ginny Snook Scott of California Closets.
Choose multipurpose elements
Add in diminutive furnishings that can serve a variety of needs. Tuck in a storage ottoman, small chest or trunk for seating and stock it with water bottles or snacks, sunscreen, office supplies or whatever you need on a regular basis. A portable stool or chair may work for quick shoe changes — and you can easily drag it outside when guests gather on the porch.
Hang a mirror
Mirrors multiply light and visually expand a space. Hang a small mirror for that last-minute check before heading out the door — it can even serve as a memo board with the addition of a dry-erase marker for jotting quick reminders.
Where your mudroom is located will determine what materials you'll need.
Learn how to find the right floors for your mudroom design.
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