Hi friend! I’m so happy to have the first home decor project of the new year done! This mudroom makeover is a project I’ve had on my mind for a long time now, and it was relatively painless to accomplish since I hired out most of the heavy lifting.
I’ll give you a quick look at the glorious ‘after’ here, then I’ll show you the before and walk you through the process of how we transformed the space from cluttered to calm.
I think to truly appreciate the AFTER, you need to see the BEFORE. While, I feel so fortunate to even have a dedicated mudroom, I didn’t enjoy seeing all of our things pile up each day. It’s your basic assortment of things you’d expect to find in a mudroom – coats and jackets, bags and backpacks, shoes and a few miscellaneous items that wound up here.
Flat surfaces tend to attract all the random items, don’t they?!
Of course I’ve seen open mudrooms like this on Pinterest where all the things are a soothing, cohesive color palette, but that’s just not our life. My son likes red and has a giant red gym bag, my daughter chose the floral puffer jacket. That’s fine, I just don’t want to see it all.
When I walk in from my garage, this is scene that greets me. We have doors on the upper part of the mudroom, but the bottom is left open and you can see all.the.things.
We have jackets, bags and ball caps hanging on hooks, then our shoes are kept in the lower bins. I used to have baskets to hold the shoes, but it seemed like a pain to keep pulling them in and out since they weren’t very deep and didn’t hold that much.
I thought about adding a bench seat and decorative shiplap or something similar to the back wall to pretty things up, but in the end, I decided I’d rather just have the whole thing doored off, more like a closet that you can close the door to so you don’t have to see everything.
The other I get, the more I realize how much I dislike visual clutter and I feel much calmer and at peace when things look clean and clear.
Here’s the view from my pantry the day we started the project. I figured if we just continued with another set of doors down below and over the shoe compartments, that would solve the unsightly view issue.
I started by asking my friends if they had a contractor they recommended and my friend Marianna referred me to Nelson. He’d done several projects for her and she was impressed with his work, so I contacted him.
He came over the next day and looked at my mudroom with me. I explained that I just wanted doors to enclose the bottom part and where the shoes were. He recommended that I also extend the bench about six inches so we would still have room to sit and put things.
Above is how it looked when I cleared everything out. So much better already!
Nelson was able to set up shop in my back garage and side yard so he could cut the wood for the extended bench and doors.
I’m so glad he recommended extending the bench because otherwise, there wouldn’t have been hardly any room there.
So, he basically built a new bench shelf and shoe cubbies that would extend about 6 inches further out than before.
We were careful to have the new doors in the same shape and style as the existing doors so that they looked like they belong together. They also all open the same way.
It took several days to extend the bench, create the doors and install everything. I was so excited to see it starting to come together!
Next, it was time to paint and, of course, I called my old friend Ruben for the job. He’s painted nearly every room in my house and we always end up chatting for a long time while he’s here.
Ruben primed the lower cabinets, then painted them the same color we already had, Sherwin Williams Divine White.
The next day, he came back to paint the upper and lower so that they would match.
The final step to make the doors fully functional (and pretty!) was to add decorative pulls. I went with oil rubbed bronze pulls that would coordinate well with our dark hardwood floors. I’m really happy with the quality of these pulls – they have a nice weight to them, and the diameter isn’t too skinny.
Some reviews I read for other pulls mentioned that they were too thin, more like a pencil.
Brian is super handy, so he installed all of them for me! Since the cabinet doors are tall, I figured they could take having a 6-inch pull and I think they ended up looking great. If you look at the before pics, you’ll see I just had silver knobs before. I think these look so much better and more substantial.
Finally, I added a rug to the room and it looks great here. It’s the same runner rug that I have in the kitchen, so they coordinate. I will say, I noticed that the kitchen runner rug had faded considerably after a year and a half, so this new one is darker.
I’m so happy with the finished result! Now, when I enter from the garage, or peek through from the kitchen, all I see is a bright, clean space! It also draws your eye up to have the doors all finished and matching now.
If you’re building a home and considering adding a mudroom, definitely think about if visual clutter bothers you, because if it does, you might want to have closed doors instead of an open space.
I’m so thrilled with how the project turned out and how I don’t have to see all the clutter everyday! Everything is all tucked away and it’s easy to open the door to get what you need. Plus, we have that additional bench seating so we can put bags/backpacks and coats there as we’re getting ready to head out the door each day.
One thing I still need to do is line the shelves with this cork liner. It’s the same one I used in our pantry and I love how it protects the shelves from getting all scuffed up, plus it’s easy to wipe or vacuum clean.
Then, if you’re interested, I can open up all these doors and show you how I organize what’s inside. Let me know if you’d like to see that!
Have a fantastic day friend!