A back entry should be just as welcoming as the front door. Here's how to set up a cheerful spot for kicking off your shoes.
By Steele Marcoux and Taylor Soppe
1 of 11Photograher: Mark Lohman
Create a mudroom
A few smart storage ideas later, and turning your entryway into a full-fledged mudroom is a breeze.
2 of 11Photo courtesy of manufacturer
No built-in benches or closets? No problem. Get the same function with a single piece of furniture. Complete with seating, cubbies, and hooks, these units can transform any wall near an entry into a full-blown mudroom. Bonus: Catch-all pieces with built-in mirrors, like this one, let you check your look before heading out the door.
An indoor/outdoor rug made of poly-propylene is the ideal solution for shielding mudroom floors from whatever you track in. For easy cleaning, just take it outside, shake it out, and hose it off. Because it's UV-treated, you can even let it air-dry outside.
Keep a boot scraper by the door for muddy sneakers or dirty shoes. This iron dachshund will be mom's best friend!
Buy it: Uniflame Cast Iron Dog Boot Scraper, $34; wayfair.com.
7 of 11Photographer: Robert Brantley Photography
The Locker Room
Built-in cubbies are a great way to maximize storage and keep things organized in a mudroom. Customization options abound: Dedicate one per family member for sweatshirts, hats, and bags, or assign each a different category, such as towels, sports equipment, and rain gear.
Depending on your needs, consider installing a mix of shelves and hooks at appropriate heights. Lining the interior with V-groove paneling will protect the walls and add cottage charm.
Finish off the space with a bench for pulling off sandy shoes on the way in. Short on space? Try tucking smaller bins beneath built-in seating.