Thursday, December 6, 2012

Laundry/ Mudroom Phase One

We all have a problem room. You know the one that you just can't get to work for you despite numerous attempts.  You rearrange/ repurpose/ redecorate until you are blue in the face & still the room is a big fat F. Well around here we are failing miserably in the laundry/mudroom. It is so bad that Hubby, who you will come to learn in NOT enthusiastic when it comes to home projects,  announced we needed to do something about the situation. We aren't dealing with "oh I'm sick of that paint color" bad, but rather "I hate going in that room" bad.  So mudroom fix up has gone to the top of the list. 


Here is what we started off with. The room is long, narrow & is the only access to the garage from the house (read: major thoroughfare).  The bookshelves are from Ikea and in theory seem like a great idea but they had three major problems:
  1. They were too shallow to hold laundry baskets. So instead they collected clutter.
  2. Their footprint was too deep for the room, making the already tight space even more confining.
  3. They occupied the entire wall leaving no place for the kids to hang their coats (they can't hang coats up themselves in the closet).

I had just emptied one of the three bookshelves when I took this shot.

Door to garage is straight ahead and to the left is a closet.

View from the kitchen

So one night I set to work emptying shelves & organizing the ungodly amount of junk we had amassed. Hubby & I then theorized several different layouts & settled upon this: 

Phase One

We relocated the two larger bookcases to the garage. The emptied area now houses wall pegs for coats & backpacks along with a cubby bench.  The bench is actually the narrow Ikea bookshelf  (from the before) turned on its side.

The kiddos can now hang up their bags & coats. The hope is this eliminates said items from
being thrown on the floor and causing serious injury to either Hubby or myself.

The center bookshelf has been turned into a bench w/cubbies for shoes.

Each child has his/her own wall cubby while Hubby & I each have a set of three. The bins house shoes, hats, gloves, scarves, & purses. I love the clean & concealed look, rather than the open storage of the prior bookshelves. No matter how hard I tried, they just always looked messy & unorganized. How this room looks is important to me because it is visible from our kitchen dining area.

The wall cubbies came in black & I simply used chalk to write each family member's initial on his/her cubby. In the future we can use them as memo boards reminders/ notes or to decorate for holidays/special occasions. 
The fresh chalk was too much of a temptation for the kiddos.

I've had these bulletin boards sitting on the bookshelves unopened for months meaning to use them for the kids' artwork. They LOVE having their masterpieces displayed & I love how it helps corral the clutter.
You can see where we added another set of 3 wall cubbies at the "laundry" end of the room. The oak peg racks were hanging in the house when we moved in.

The minor changes have made such a major improvement to the flow and function of the room. In fact, the pictures above were not even staged. It appears that there is a place for everything & near everything is in its place pretty much 100% of the time. To be honest, if 80% of it is in its place 80% of the time I would declare this a roaring success.

We are going to continue to live with this set up for a few more weeks (we've been in the house over 2.5 yrs and have yet to find a set up that "works"long term).  Having to wait kills me as I am all about instant gratification. Yes, the organization in someways is gratifying, but I want to see all the pretty pieces come together.

So in an effort to pass the time, I am making a laundry list (no pun intended) of to-dos for the room including:
  • Swapping out the horrific light fixture (thinking either a chandelier or pendant fixture)
  • Paint for the walls, cabinets & shelving (maybe large horizontal stripes)
  • Art work
  • Bench cushion
  • Mirror
  • Chore chart
  • Growth Chart
I'll be sure to keep you all posted. 

1 comment:

  1. We have the same problem, and I am also getting to the point I can't stand it anymore. I'm interested to see how the new layout is working in a few weeks or what tweaks (if any) you'll make!


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