Family-Friendly Mudroom Makeover

Atlanta homeowners Hayden and Craig Kelly turn a neglected space off their back entrance into an outdoor mudroom equipped with clever storage for kids and pets.

Welcoming Change

As their sons Carter and Henry became increasingly more active, Atlanta homeowners Hayden and Craig Kelly decided to convert the covered area on the side entry of their home into a convenient outdoor mudroom.

From Blah to Bold

Prior to the update, this area was a neglected space cluttered with bikes and ride-on toys. But a springy new exterior color, updates to an old potting bench and tropical-toned accents have turned it into the homeowners' new favorite spot.

Room for a Bench

Mudrooms are the perfect places for benches that allow you to stop and remove your shoes before entering the home. With no true interior entryway, Hayden and Craig were lacking the space to accommodate such a perch. But thanks to an 8-foot exterior wall in their new outdoor mudroom, the couple gained ample space for a new Parsons version, where everyone can take off their Georgia clay-clad footwear before traipsing inside.

Hanging Around

Hayden hangs her jackets, purse and an umbrella neatly on white-painted pegs above the Parsons bench.

Doggie-Door Business

Though excellent solutions for mobile pets, many dogs are apprehensive about using dog doors in the event of inclement weather. Should the family's cocker spaniel, Lucy, need to let herself out, the covered mudroom offers a place for her to tackle her business.

Bold Household Hub

Whether packing picnic baskets with snacks, cleaning up messy workout gear or arranging cut flowers in vases, the busy mom and dad always find an excuse to use their colorful, storage-packed mudroom command center.

A Place for Vases

An outdoor mudroom can be an excellent solution for a home that's lacking in storage. Hayden has a large collection of vases that previously took up two entire kitchen cabinets but could be used more efficiently to stow bowls, plates and serving pieces. Now simple, white-painted wooden crates provide open storage along an exterior wall, keeping fragile vases out of the boys’ reach while freeing up valuable kitchen real estate.

Privacy Curtains

Whether grooming cocker spaniel Lucy, cleaning up the kids after a day of roughhousing or arranging flowers in vases, Hayden is likely to spend lengthy periods of time in the outdoor mudroom. To add a layer of privacy and soften the hard edges of the home's exterior, indoor-outdoor drapery panels made of machine-washable acrylic fabric were installed.

Clever Pegboard Storage

Pegboards keep mudroom essentials stored neatly and within reach. As the Kelly family grows and their activities evolve, an adjustable pegboard backsplash, installed above the command center, offers a convenient spot to hang baskets and hooks. The utilitarian material was dressed up with a coat of celery-green paint.

Outdoor Sink

A ready-made potting bench or console table can easily become a hard-working mudroom command center, complete with working water. But it's important to keep in mind various sink options and what their installations entail. Hayden and Craig chose an under-mount stainless steel sink for its sleek appearance and easy maintenance.

Flower Power

Similar to laundry rooms, mudrooms are rugged, hardy spaces best utilized for messy yet necessary daily routines. Rather than splashing water all over her kitchen and clogging her disposal drain with cut stems, Hayden utilizes her new potting bench command center as a flower-arranging station.

Grab-and-Go Hooks

Soiled sneakers worn by active children require extra room to properly air out. Instead of bundling Carter's and Henry's sneakers in bins, Hayden and Craig hang them out to dry on hooks installed neatly along the side of the command center.

The Perks of Pea Gravel

Pea gravel was the material of choice for Hayden and Craig's outdoor mudroom. Sold by the truckload, pea gravel sits loosely on the ground and helps with drainage; thus, it's often used in gardens and planting beds. It's great for evening out a less-than-level surface and kicking dirt and clay off boots before heading inside.

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