Vision for the Kitchen {A Mudroom Entrance}

Laundry Room Mudroom Combination - Emily Fisher of Rock Paper HammerEmily Fisher of Rock Paper Hammer via HGTV

Two weeks ago (whoa, has it been two weeks already? my how time flies!) I featured a sketch of a potential floor plan for our kitchen remodel (in context with the rest of our main floor).  What I didn’t share yet was the possible location of a second bathroom on this floor (should we decide to add one)! Many of you shared great ideas for where we might be able to sneak one in and some of you had questions, so today I thought I’d circle back to it and maybe answer a few of those questions. If you missed those posts, check out Part One and Part Two here.

Right now we have two full bathrooms, one on the main floor and one on the lower level. Two is really plenty for our family right now, but if (when) we close off our bedroom and bathroom to be more like a master suite (well, a mini-one, ha), it would be nice to have a second main floor bathroom for guests.

Another reason for a second bath on this level would be because down the road when our son graduates and heads off to college, we may decide to create a rentable space in our lower level. Rentable spaces in family homes are popular for buyers and owners in Seattle because the cost of living here is pretty high. If we decide to do that at some point, the bathroom downstairs (as well as the current laundry room) would become a part of the rental so we would need to add a second bathroom and would likely want a washer and dryer on the main floor, too.

Gray Black and White Mudroom - Heather Garrett Interior DesignHeather Garrett Interior Design

We don’t want to remodel more extensively than is necessary, or take on more projects than we feel we really need to right now, but it is fun to dream of the possibilities before we have to commit to what is best for our family. So even as we dream, we continue to weigh the value of scaled back options, too, just in case. All options are still on the table but I’m pretty excited about all of the possibilities for improvement, no matter what we decide to do.

I do have to admit, the additional plan for our kitchen area that I’m going to share with you today got my heart beating a bit faster and made the end result of a remodel even more appealing to me.

Kitchen Remodel Floor Plan - The Inspired Room blogAbove is our proposed kitchen floor plan. The island is just a placeholder (size and orientation TBD), and this plan doesn’t yet include our idea of the mudroom to the left of the Dutch door)

A few of you (and my mom) suggested that it would be nice to find a way to make the Dutch Door into a “mudroom” type entrance. I agree, that idea is positively dreamy and seems very practical use of space, too. So if we are going to create a mudroom entrance, imagine this…what if we took out the current pantry cabinets and refrigerator, and then turned my son’s current bedroom into a connected mudroom/pantry/bathroom/laundry space? (We could create a teen hangout and bedroom downstairs that we could still access even if we rented part of the lower level, to make up for the loss of that bedroom.)

Black and White Laundry Room Mudroom Combination
Style At Home

In my dreams, you’d walk into the Dutch door (from the new side yard) and to your left of the kitchen would be the new mudroom (maybe open, or behind a pocket door or barn door). Check out the inspiration pics on this page for lots of ideas! You’d see a wall of hooks, cubbies and bins. You’d have overflow pantry space, perhaps even an extra fridge or freezer. The dogs would have a place to eat without being under foot in the kitchen. You’d also be able to easily toss in a load of laundry and grab the clothes from the dryer. And along with this space, from the front hall (or maybe from this room, too), you’d be able to access a small full bathroom that would be easily accessible for guests.

Concealed Washer and Dryer - by Sage Design Custom MillworkSage Design – Custom Millwork

Lacquered Life in Southern Living / Photography by Francesco Lagnese

Laundry Room MudroomTraditional Home

Built In Dog Feeding Station
House Beautiful 

Mudroom with back door and sink - gray slate floors - Murphy and Co
Murphy & Co

Built In Cabinet for Dog Feeding Bowls

Don’t ask me yet where the kitchen fridge would go in this scenario, but I’m sure we’d figure it out. Maybe we could even get fancy fridge drawers in an island for our fresh produce or daily necessities.

While I still might opt for a kitchen facelift rather than a full remodel, now that I have this idea in my head, it will be hard for my head to convince my heart to let go of this mudroom idea. :) 

PS. We finally got a new washer and dryer downstairs, so soon I’ll update you on that space and introduce you to the rest of the lower level!

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  1. Considering how good your redesign of your last kitchen went, I would be very tempted to rework your existing kitchen cupboards into the new layout and go for this mud room. This design would also allow light from the front of the house to flow through the kitchen. Also moving my washer and dryer upstairs was the best thing I ever did. Reuse the cupboards you can, add more where necessary and top it off with ikea butcher block counters to leave room in the budget for the mudroom. You won’t regret the layout change and you could upgrade the kitchen cupboards and counter later.

  2. Absolutely fantastic vision and plan in every respect, Melissa. It will finish off the first floor beautifully and it opens up so many possibilities for the basement for now for Luke, for future tenants and down the road for the next family who moves in on day (hopefully not real soon). Check out for “The New Must-Have in Modern Kitchens”. You might not want the entire island to be the fridge but certainly drawers for the dailies would be very practical. When my late husband and I owned our other home, we had the requisite hunker of a double-door fridge in the kitchen but there was so much restricted space inside. We bought a cheapie single door fridge from Lowe’s and set it in the garage right at the entry door to the house. So much better. You could do the same in the new mudroom. I think Pam’s idea of moving a washer/dryer upstairs in the mudroom is a great idea too, especially since that’s where you’ll be doing most of your daily living. And while you’re taking the time to actualize your new first floor, Luke can have his kingdom downstairs for the next few years with everything he needs and you can move forward with that level later.

  3. My heart is going pitter-patter too!! I just love the revised idea!!!

  4. Mudroom/laundry rooms are so important! I have no mud-room (you walk in from the garage onto a 3×3 landing of carpet) and the laundry is in a closet. So we are planning to add a bay to the garage and turn one of the existing 2 bay into a large mudroom/laundry room. Not only will it house all our coats, boots, ski gear, and of course the laundry, and cleaning products, we will also have cubbies for all the sports equipment from bike helmets to hockey equipment. I’m very excited to have everything in one place! And the existing laundry closet will become a much needed pantry. Houzz has a lot of amazing mudrooms to look at for ideas.

  5. Susan Byers says:

    Why not add a door directly into that space? Then you can keep the pantry and refrigerator and keep the mudroom/laundry and powder room separate. Just a thought.

  6. Fab ideas, how exciting. I looked at your plan and your back door into the kitchen is exactly like mine, even with a bank of pantry cabinets to the other side of door; L shapped counter and I have an island. Well not really ann island, an 1800 pine/long wood table with a shelf below. After living here for 8 years, I can tell you, it is well worth taking time now to figure an entrance area, or even on the outside of your house, a add on to use as a mud room/entrance. EVERYTHING always gets tracked straight into the kitchen, on the island; husband’s tools, dogs muddy feet, people visiting, all their packages. It is constand work to keep the floors and counters clean of objects and dirt brought right into kitchen. Country people always had great ideas for space, they had a back porch with sometimes sinks for people to wash hands of dirt and grease before coming into the house; to take off shoes; for animals to hang out instead of the kitchen. I now have a small area by back door with an in/out rug; old benches to hold shoes; baskets, hooks to hold hats, bags and even a towel to wipe off dog feet. Good luck!! I am sure it will be beautiful.

  7. Be still my heart! That would be so awesome! I am longing for a mudroom here, too. I love your inspiration photos.
    Deanna Rabe recently posted..Boy’s Bedroom: UpdatingMy Profile

  8. beautiful inspirations! I like so many things from your selections . The must have mudroom bench, the appliance garage to hide appliances away when not in use,and the wonderful dog drawer!
    I invite you to share your post at my link party You can link up now until midnight on Saturday. Hugs

  9. The mudroom belongs right there after you close the Dutch doors, I think it’s absolutely necessary and will make your house great–I haven’t detected any other space dedicated to the walk-in-and-out stuff from the plans so far. Melissa, good luck!

  10. Melinda Young says:

    I am just “smitten” with your ideas! Love the inspirational photos! You have such wonderful vision!
    You’ve also helped me. We have laundry in a closet in our hallway. Less than ideal, but it’s near bedrooms which is a “win”. I love the photos with the ideas with how to conceal it. It’s not a top priority, but it’s on my list for someday to conceal it better. Thanks for the ideas!

  11. I love your design ideas and how the light just shines right in. Natural light is so important as we all know. I believe everything has it’s place in a home and if done with style the correct way with NO clutter then energy can transform the home and the home inhabitants.Thank you for your time and inspirations!

  12. Hi Melissa – Love your ideas! If you’re thinking of a dog kennel – please check out what our kitchen designer came up with for us – a fully tiled kennel. We have a bed for our dog in there now – still very easy to clean!

  13. You gave me so many inspiring ideas, Melissa! Especially the mudroom entrance. The kitchen will definitely open up and become a more special place for you and future guests.

  14. Love that black and white laundry with the bench SO pretty!!

  15. Your home looks smazing!! What color of paint (name/brand) did you use on the wall in your staircase area? Thx!!

  16. Jamie B says:

    Perfect!! I can’t wait to see all of this come together! I think you will even amaze your self with your talent! You go girl!

  17. Elizabeth says:

    I would absolutely do this! That just makes so much sense in relation to the rest of the house!

  18. This makes me so happy! Thank you for the great ideas. We are currently building a barndiminium and I can’t wait to get to the mudroom!!!!

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