Wednesday, November 5, 2014

A Unique Entrance - Can It Be a Mudroom?

I've heard it said that most buyers decide if they want to buy a house within 5 minutes.  I'm not sure it took me that long on this house, because I fell in love with the entrance.

I'm not sure if you call it a foyer, since it's a common entrance to both apartments.  But I think it's an amazing space with a lot of potential.  It has the original bead board ceiling, clapboard siding, and beautiful doors with their original hardware.

Of course it needs a few changes!  We'll eliminate 1) the windows that are the backside of the shower units for the 1st floor bathrooms, 2) the bathroom exhaust vents that stink up the room, 3) the indoor/outdoor carpeting that's covering up original floors.

And I'd like to make it a giant mudroom, with a separate storage unit for each tenant.  So, the plan is to put a closet, mud bench, and coat rack on each side, next to their front doors.

Once the guys pulled the windows out, I started the design.  I needed to figure out dimensions for the layout.  Painters tape is great for this, because you can apply it and remove it as much as you need to - to get the right proportions.

From that, I came up with this layout.  I'm going to use IKEA units for the closets, with a 5 panel glass door.  It's a nice blend of traditional and contemporary that will look great in the space.  Waterhouse Builders will install them with a kickspace below and crown moulding above - so they will look like custom built ins.  Next to each unit is a mud bench for putting on snow boots.  The benches will have wooden furniture legs for additional support and a little additional style.  Above each bench will be two rows of coat hooks, for lots of hanging space.  And we'll use a wide plank V-groove bead board to continue that blend of contemporary and traditional.
In addition to the storage design, I'm really excited about the ceiling fixtures.  These retro style light fixtures will look great on the white bead board ceiling.  There will be two of them - one on each tenant's side.  One of the things I've learned on this project, is when you have a common area, each tenant must have their own light with dedicated switch.  Who knew?

But before any of the custom woodwork can start, we needed to tear out the old carpet and get the floors cleaned up.  Underneath, we have tired old pine floors.

The team from Peter's Hardwood cleaned them up in no time.  They sanded them and did two coats of polyurethane.  We'll do the final coat when everything else is complete.

We hope to start on the woodwork in the next couple of weeks.  But what do you think?  Doesn't it look better already?  Won't this be nice for the new tenants?

Light Fixtures - Lamps Plus - Franklin Park Vintage Metal Cage
Closets - IKEA
Copper Clock - Smith & Hawken

Pin It


  1. Having lived in a lot of different kinds of shared housing, I do know you run into territorial neighbors (renters), and communal spaces sometimes suffer---especially if one tenant is messier than other, or lets their stuff (kids' stuff, pet stuff, sports stuff) "migrate" into the other side.

    For that reason, wondering if you can add some kind of bench in the center between the two closets that could serve as a divider? Thinking a two-sided low storage bench with seats facing each door and have a shared back that goes up to just under the clock (maybe move the clock up a bit, too?). It would give people a place to sit down while they pull off boots, each unit's "territory" is clearly marked, and people will have just a little bit more space for their stuff so clutter can be contained.

    Just a thought!

    1. Wow, what an interesting idea! We already have a bench for each unit, but creating more of a divider might make sense. Let me think it through a little more!

  2. I agree with the above comment. I'm kind of afraid of having my stuff out there with somebody else.

  3. Love this idea, no tracking snow in the house!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...