Should I use a wardrobe for my mudroom

February 8, 2019

I'm hoping to redo our mudroom (entrances from garage and outside, also access to small laundry room and kitchen) which currently consists of a 60" closet with sliding doors. We also have a bench ottoman for shoes and 3 hooks on the wall above in a corner just behind the mudroom door (there really isn't the right space for the bench there, but I can slide it over when we need to open the door). I like the idea of the closet because I can shut the door to not see the clutter of lots of coats, but there is a lot of wasted space at the top of the closet. I have 2 sets of plastic drawers (6 total) under the hanging coats for winter gear, rain/snow boots and a dog drawer. I found some ideas here on Houzz as inspiration but am not looking to custom build the cabinets so I'm wondering what advice you have. I searched kitchen tall cabinets and find most of them have 4 doors. I think a wardrobe like the Ikea PAX might work for what I'm envisioning. I have 9' ceilings.

-Possibly a 30-39" wardrobe with 2 hanging rods and short cabinet above for storage.

-24-35" bench with either drawers or cubbies/baskets below for shoes.

-2 to 3 hooks above the bench and cabinets above for storage.

-Possibly build shelves into the wall studs behind the exterior door for small baskets for storage of gloves and hats.

We have 3 kids.

I'm not currently looking for advice on floor will have to see if there's $ in the budget to change it. Also not looking for comments about decluttering the doors of the photos and kid artwork, that will come down soon enough. I welcome your design suggestions and what type of wardrobe or cabinetry that can accomplish it.

The space we have now:

View from the kitchen

Panoramic view from the door/bench corner


Inspiration photos:

Overall inspiration photo but on a smaller scale for me (hoping we can also move our electric as they have done)

Inspiration for tall cabinet with double hanging rods

Comments (17)

  • Kaitlin

    I have a very small mudroom with no storage. I went with 2 Ikea Brimnes wardrobes and changed out the hardware. It is just two of us, but we used one for jackets and shoes, and the other for cleaning supplies.

    There's plenty of ideas on how to "hack" them too. Like this:

  • suedonim75

    A really good closet organizing system could probably solve your problems. A standard rod is a huge waste of space and is pretty much useless.

  • PRO
    Roanoke Woodworking Inc.

    My advise when considering this space.

    With three kids, make storage as easy as possible - no doors, no hangers - HOOKS.

    Make their storage open shelves, maybe with baskets (Will their gloves and hats actually MAKE it in the baskets??)

    Shoes need to be in an area with a cleanable floor. Any time shoes go inside a drawer or cabinet, it gets filthy. Your photos of benches with floor storage below (on tile) work well.

  • nicole___

    I storage.

  • ci_lantro

    Closets need to be 28-30 deep for hanging winter coats; the Pax is less than 23" deep.

  • Lyndee Lee
    I don't see a tremendous amount of space in that room for a wardrobe. I could not read all the markings on your drawing, so will this wardrobe replace the existing bench? There is a major difference in visual impact from an open bench to a full height cabinet and your room may be very cramped. If you can avoid storing coats in this space and only use it for current items, you could probably avoid a big cabinet in favor of hooks and baskets. Before buying the monster cabinet, I suggest a mockup made with cardboard boxes or hang a sheet over chairs. Don't use just tape on the floor because it won't give you the true picture of the space required
  • maavernon

    ci_lantro thanks for that tidbit on the depth!

    Lyndee I was only going to buy a wardrobe to replace the closet area and use the space more effectively. We have a very open floor plan with the kitchen, family room, foyer and living room and the builder of this house did not figure in very many closets for storage. We do have a single door closet by our front door where we have the coats that aren't used as often but it is very full.

    My plan is that everyday coats will go on the hooks over a bench for the kids but the other coats which are often used with temperature swings where we live could stay behind the door of the wardrobe. I figured 2 hanging rods in a narrower cabinet would provide the same amount of hanging space as the one long rod we have now, just need one that is deeper apparently.

    I'm not keen on the entire space being open with hooks as I'd like to keep some of it hidden.

    Suedonim I should probably reach out to closet factory again for their input, we used them for our master closet.

  • maavernon

    Oh and the issue with floor storage for shoes is a problem because our dogs will take them and run around the house with them, so they need to be in something.

  • tqtqtbw

    If you are replacing the closet behind the sliding doors, I would do something like inspiration pictures #1, #3 or #4. That way, you move hooks way from the porch door and eliminate the freestanding bench. I would keep some closed storage for cleaning tools and other items that don't need to be grab and go.

    maavernon thanked tqtqtbw
  • maavernon

    ci_lantro I just measured my existing closet it is 23.5 inches depth inside and 29" from the interior back wall to the outside of the outer wall molding.

  • maavernon

    tqtqtbw yes that is my thought too, pic #2 was more to show the type of cabinet door and interior dual hanging rod that I want

  • CLC

    I would keep the closet and look at a closet system like the Rubbermaid fast can customize and fully utilize the closet space you have. We didn’t have a true mud room at our last home, just a long closet with bifold doors, and room for a bench. We installed a bunch of the fast track pieces in the closet....I had room for longer hanging items (like snow pants and long coats) on the left side, with shoe and boot storage underneath, shelves and pull out drawers in the middle, and on the right side two rows of hanging bars for all of our regular length jackets. And then room at the very top to line baskets and storage bins on the top shelf. We utilized every inch of the closest that we had! It was also nice that I could adjust things and/or move the heights of the hanging bars and shelves as my kids grew and/or our needs changed. Once you get the main support brackets up, it is a very flexible system. The other nice thing about the wire shelving systems is stuff is able to breathe and also dry out. I would hesitate putting anything that is still wet (rain jackets, snow pants, etc) in a pax wardrobe.

  • CLC

    And then I would do a nice bench with baskets and hooks in the ”open area” of the mud room for backpacks, shoes, jackets you are currently using day to day

  • Lyndee Lee
    Ok I now understand your are removing the closet and replacing it with cabinets. Seems to me that one of the major features of your inspiration photos is the open feeling of cabinets with space over rather than complete walls. To get that effect, you would need to remove the wall and move the switches, outlet and that control panel (security system?). If you leave that wall, you won't be getting the visual effect and will be spending quite a bit of money to change out access to the space. You won't get any more storage, just better access to existing space.

    Would you get the same improvement by replacing the sliding doors with a set of double hinged doors? If you used solid doors, you could mount a full height organizer on the back of the doors and get quite a bit of easy access space for smaller items. That would allow you to avoid the cost of moving electric and also the cost of fixing the drywall and replacing the floor tiles where the wall currently sits.
  • maavernon
    Yes removing the closet. The dimensions of the room I gave in a pic above are without the closet. I am hoping to remove the closet wall end too and move the electric so I can have that end a little more open with a bench and hooks I would have 65” of space on that wall. If this mudroom project doesn’t end up costing too much I may be able to get the tile replaced. If tile stays I thought we could build a leg for the bench that takes up space where the wall was. I really want to have accessible storage in the high part of the closet and I won’t get that if I don’t remove the dry wall anyway.
  • maavernon
    Clc actually I think we have that fastrack stuff in the garage.
  • hbeing

    What about placing the hooks on the inside of the storage doors?

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