Wisconsin weather is unpredictable year-round, and luxury custom-built homes today are designed to withstand extreme swings in climate each season. Aside from planning for construction, materials and design that suits the environment, the layout of the living space as it relates to entries and traffic throughout the home should be carefully considered for practical reasons. The entryways have multiple functions and can often prove challenging to simultaneously make it organized, functional and aesthetically pleasing. This is where the beauty of a well-planned mudroom comes into play.
In Wisconsin, mud is a year-round event – even in the winter, as this current mild February week bears witness. Snowmelt creates many challenges for homeowners as the ground is oversaturated and water damage is rampant; residual mud is not as dangerous as it is unsavory and nearly impossible to control when pets and children are involved. When designing the mudroom, imagine all the possibilities for this valuable space and then make a plan for its location, layout, functionality and storage/organization capacity.
In terms of location, the two most common areas are the door to the garage or the back door, often used as the reception area for either. It is the first place to unload from the car or the outside: shoes, backpacks, outdoor gear and any other contents entering the home. In that respect, the mudroom should have tools to clean and a place to store items that are only used outside (i.e. Umbrellas, rainboots) and don’t have a place in the garage.
The possibilities are endless, and most modern luxury dream homes provide examples of cleverly designed spaces, large and small, which expertly address the individual needs of the homeowner. In-floor drains with a hose for muddy feet (pets and kids), laundry facilities, cubicles or lockers for each family member, drawers or shelves for towels, hats, cleaning supplies, pet supplies, etc. Ideally, a mudroom provides easy transitions from outdoors to in, as well as solutions to keeping the main living space free of outside dirt.
From a design standpoint, the mudroom space does not need to look sterile or utilitarian to be completely functional. Bright colors, rich woodwork, beautiful tile and stone and light fixtures and hardware are all important design touches that can create a beautiful space that holds up to the dirtiest jobs. Custom home builders and designers are well-versed on designating the most durable and easy-to-clean materials that have natural beauty and longevity, befitting a luxury dream home.
A mudroom can often be a homeowner’s most appreciated space and is nearly always the most used. Check out the following examples of creative, functional and visually appealing mudrooms: