Hall Closet Turned Mini Mudroom Makeover

Me and my hubby started out our life together as newlyweds in Minnesota, the land of snow and bitter winter temps. Some of the best advice we received while we lived there was, "Once you have kids, never buy a house without a mudroom." Let's face it. Kids haul a lot of stuff to school in the winter, book bags, puffy coats, hats, gloves and snow boots. And their little legs and arms make it pretty impossible for them to hang their stuff up on their own in your standard hall closet with wire racks. 

Unfortunately when we bought our house in Illinois, we didn't heed this advice. Now that we have two kids in school their stuff was starting to pile up all over the house. And no one ever knew where their coat or shoes were when it was time to head out of the door. I had seen the idea of converting a hall closet into a mudroom around Pinterest before, so me and the hubby decided to give it a try. Here is how it turned out.

Luckily for us, we have an additional hall closet by our front door, so the hall closet by the garage door was a perfect candidate for this makeover. We used this post from Make It & Love It for our inspiration. Our closet is a lot smaller, so we made tweaks accordingly. I basically sent this post to my hubby and told him to make it happen. Boy, do I love him!

You will have to trust him when a I tell you that nail gun and miter saw are going to make this project a whole lot easier. He recommends the Ryobi Cordless Brad Nailer and the Dewalt DW715 Miter Saw. I'm hoping an investment in tools like this means we can put up some shiplap and crown molding soon. 

Once he was done with the build out, he tagged me in to fill the nail holes and caulk the gaps and seams. He joked that Chip was handing the baton off to JoJo (all you Fixer Upper fans will understand). After I got done filling and caulking, I came to the conclusion that Jo would had left this job to Chip. It's tedious, and you definitely need a lot of patience for it. You need to fill every nail hole with wood filler and fill in all the seams with all purpose caulk. Then sand everything down and wipe it down with a tack cloth.

We had some paint left over from painting our baseboards a while back. I used Sherwin Williams ProClassic Acrylic Latex in Semi Gloss. The mudroom is going to get a lot of traffic and using a semi gloss will make it super easy to wipe up. In fact, my 2 year old found a pencil this weekend and wrote all over the bench. It cleaned up with a little soap and water. Whoop, whoop! 

We decided to remove the door to the closet as well because we were really happy with the way it looked. The hallway is really tight with the door, and it was always getting caught on the rug. I filled up all the holes in the frame with more wood filler, sanded them down and finished them off with a couple of coats of my ProClassic paint.

I completed the mudroom with some Seagrass storage baskets from Target. Here is another storage basket option I found on Amazon. The great thing about Seagrass is it won't scratch your floors. I also bought the hooks from Target, but you can also find some more hook options over at Amazon if you don't want to leave the house.

Lastly, to really make the white woodwork pop I painted the walls in the closet Sherwin Williams Special Gray to match the accent wall in our family room. I love the rich, dark gray against the pure white trim.

We are super happy with how this turned out, but the best part of all is that the kids can now hang up their stuff all on their own! Do you have a closet dying for this makeover?  

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Guest Post: Five Space Saving Ideas for a Small Home

Hi, Pretty Distressed readers! My name is Krissy, and I blog over at Hot Commodity. I talk about reading, decorating, sewing, and home improvement. I am so excited that Christina invited me to share this post with you today. So without further ado, here are my 5 Space-Saving Ideas For a Small Home!

My husband and I have lived in a small home (1400 sq. ft.) for the last seven years. Over the years, our family has grown, but our house has not, so we have had to come up with some ways to use the space we have as best as we can. So here are five of my favorite space-saving things we have done in our home:

1. Save Floor & Drawer Space by Hanging Things Up.
Instead of having a pantry, our home has a laundry room right off the kitchen. It didn't take long for us to realize we needed a good place for storing cleaning supplies and other non-food items that we still want close to the kitchen. We bought wall hooks to hang our brooms and mops on the laundry room wall so they don't clutter up the floor. We also bought a wall-mount basket to store our aluminum foil, plastic wrap, etc. so that it wasn't occupying any of our kitchen drawers. It's close enough to the kitchen that it is still convenient.

We have also saved a lot of space in the garage this way. Wall hooks hold our snow shovel, push broom, kids' t-ball set, folding chairs, and kids' bikes off the floor.

One last thing that we got off the floor and hung on the wall is our bedside tables. Instead of a traditional table, we use floating shelves. Just be careful how much weight you place on floating shelves. All we kept on them were lamps, clocks, and the occasional book, so it worked for us.

2. Lose the Closet Doors.
Our kids' rooms are quite small. In a small room, you run into a problem of not having enough wall space for the furniture. In order to give ourselves more space along the walls, we simply removed the closet doors from the kids' closets.

We store things that don't have any other home up in the top of the closet. Short dresses and shirts hang from the rod, then a shelf with drawers sits below. The right-hand corner of the closet (not pictured) is filled with extra blankets and the kids' laundry basket. Losing the closet door freed up the left-hand wall for my daughter's dresser. My son's closet is the same way -- boxes of baby clothes fill the top shelf, clothes can hang, then a similar shelf uses the closet floor space to hold clothes, books, shoes, and dress-ups. Losing the closet door freed up space in his room for his bed.

3. Install a Dimmer.
This one might not sound "space-saving" right off, but it has helped us save space. Instead of getting lamps, which generally need to sit on something (be it the floor or a table), we installed dimmer switches in both of our kids' rooms. I maintain that this was the best idea I ever had. It helped during night-time feedings when they were babies and it helps today when someone is afraid of the dark. The fact that you don't have to worry about cords, plugs, or batteries is just an added bonus!

4. Elevate the Furniture.
Obviously, this won't work for all furniture, but simply lifting beds a few inches can provide storage space underneath for seasonal clothing and decor, extra bedding, or anything else that can lay flat. We took a more extreme approach when my son graduated to a big-boy bed.

We got him a low-loft bed. This leaves usable floor space beneath it. His dresser fits under one end, and we purchased it with the bed so that it would be the right size. He stores most of his toys under the bed. The loft is high enough for kids to sit underneath it, but it's low enough that it's still fairly easy to make the bed. Plus, it makes a great fort when the kids are so inclined.

5. Get Combination Furniture.
Most of the furniture that we have purchased in the last seven years has served more than a single purpose. Our entertainment center includes drawers to store movies, video game consoles, and small toys.

Our desk is an Ikea Expedit Desk that attaches to a bookcase on one side. This was a life-saver when our second child was born and we needed to move our computer out of our third bedroom. The shelf holds office stuff on the bottom two shelves (file boxes, printer paper, cords, etc). The upper shelves hold books on one side and more office stuff on the other side. It serves as an excellent room divider so it doesn't feel like the computer is in the middle of the living room.

The last combo piece we added was a combination shelf/pot rack to go over our kitchen sink. Pots hang from it and our canister set sits atop it, which saves a lot of cabinet and counter space.

Bonus Tip: Don't Be Sentimental.
One of the most important things we have learned in our space-saving endeavors over the years is to stop being sentimental about our stuff. We do store some items we never use (like my wedding dress), and some things we hope we never need to use (like our 72-hour kits), but we have tried not to get sentimental about things that don't deserve it. If it's taking up space and not serving a necessary purpose, we don't hesitate to donate or sell it!

Do you have more space-saving tips? I'd love to hear them, so please leave a comment!

Thank you so much, Krissy, for your post today. I hope you all enjoyed it! Please make sure to visit Hot Commodity and show her some love.

Come back on Thursday, when Bre from brepurposed stops by to share a manly dresser makeover with us.