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Friday, 3 February 2012

Making a Mudroom

A couple of years ago now, we had stairs and an entrance made from our yard into the basement. Like many of you who live in urban centres, we have little front hall to speak of (i.e. if there are more than three coats on the coat hooks, you can't open the door) and our back door opens directly into the kitchen. And although we only had three children at the time, we could see that a plethora of outerwear would soon swamp either area.

I had always envisioned the wall just inside our new basement entrance as a "mudroom" --a place for all the coats and jackets, boots and shoes, hats, scarves and mitts to come to rest. Organized. Out of sight. And not spilling out into the middle of the kitchen floor!

Between conception to execution there was a lot of long-suffering on the part of my in-laws and partner (as is often the case with my "visions"). I'm a scavenger. If something out at the curb catches my eye, I grab it and figure out later if I can use it. And later can be years down the road, during which time the scavenged item is stored at my in-laws. And when I say that "I grab it," what I mean is that I call my partner, give him the location and have him pick it up. Yes, long-suffering indeed.

The bench, painted and ready for action.
Regarding the "mudroom," my scavenging resulted in... well, something that looks like a bench. Hey, it was solid wood (heavy as sin) and just needed a little work. No problem. 

Two years later, a thorough sanding and a couple of coats of Benjamin Moore's Aura paint have given somebody's trash a glorious new life as our bench. (Sorry there are no "before" photos; I wasn't that organized. And I know it looks like I'm plugging a product, but I'll explain my reasons for choosing such a paint in another post...)

They hold everything!
But my new "favourite item" in our house are the hooks. As soon as I laid eyes on them in the Lee Valley hardware catalogue, I knew they were the ones. And they are super. Super-super-duper. Three prongs (for all that stuff) and strong enough to eventually hold backpacks full of books and whatnot. Best yet, they look cool. Love 'em.

I got six of them, one for each member of the family. Now everyone has his own spot to hang his stuff (notice the masculine pronouns there --my things seem to have no trouble staying organized). Even the dog will have her own hook (as soon as I get around to that). 

A future project (hopefully not two years in the making) is to build some boxes and mount them above the hooks for storage... I'll keep you posted.

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