A bench is a must-have in your mudroom, not only as a place to sit down to pull off your boots and shoes, but also as a space for storage. There are many ways to incorporate a bench into your mudroom (or the area you've designated as an entryway mudroom-style spot), depending on how much room you have, as well as on your budget.
Your mudroom bench could be in the form of a hall tree, complete with hooks for jackets, hats and umbrellas, and cubbies underneath the bench for shoe and boot storage. If your budget and space allow, you can have a built-in unit custom-made for your space. Your bench can be designed as part of a wall unit that includes cubbies, cabinets, lockers and shelves, to maximize storage for your coats, bags and other items.
Design your unit with shelves or cabinets up to the ceiling to store off-season items, and have a small stepladder handy for when you need those items. Your bench can be designed as a window seat to create a sunny entryway. If the space and design of your mudroom allow, consider an L-shaped bench and shelving unit to make greater use of your available space. Or, if your family is large, construct dual benches or hall trees on either side of a long mudroom.
Whatever form it takes, a mudroom bench should have storage underneath, designed as cubbies, drawers, or even shelves with pull-out baskets. As an alternative to a custom-built system, you can find free-standing hall trees in a wide range of sizes and styles at home improvement and furniture stores. Or, if you're looking for a good weekend project, you can build and paint your own mudroom bench, either free-standing or with a back panel that is mounted to the wall.
If your budget is more limited, a simple bench and series of hooks can do the trick. In addition to furniture stores, check discount and thrift stores for pieces that work with your decor. Get creative; even a salvaged park bench or church pew can help you dress up a charming space for your family to store coats, boots and umbrellas. The perfect bench for your space may be made of wood, metal or wicker. Slip pretty baskets or bins underneath the bench in place of cubbies. As an alternative to mounting hooks on the wall, install a pub mirror above the bench to hold jackets, bags and key rings.
See also: Mudroom Planning Ideas