Reader SOS – Mudroom Off a Garage

I’m back with another “DIY Playbook, Save our Space”. My plan for this series is to take a reader’s space and (virtually) offer design tips and tricks on how to improve it.

Here are some of my favorite design solutions from this series…

How to Create a Mudroom Off a Garage?

I love today’s Reader SOS because it’s a space that I wish we had in our home – a mudroom off a garage. We have a detached garage and no space for a mudroom, so I get to live my design dreams through today’s post. Sarah and Sam reached out about their transition space from their garage to the rest of their home. Right now, it’s just a catchall for clothes, shoes, and cleaning supplies and they want an organized and aesthetically pleasing room. Let’s take a look at their submission…

Sarah & Sam’s Design Dilemma

Mudroom and entry

I have a room that could use some serious TLC. My husband, Sam, and I have lived in our house now for two years and we have a room off of our garage entry that could use a refresh. I would like it to be a mudroom where we can easily hang up coats, take off shoes, and store cleaning supplies.

Mudroom off a garage before

Right now it is a hot mess as you can tell from the photos (peep your label maker, ha!). It has been just a dumping ground of all sorts of things without a real rhyme or reason. The light doesn’t even work in here anymore!

How to make a mudroom off of the garage

We really like Scandinavian style, contemporary, and some mid-century. I’d love to have a closed-off hanging area, not a big fan of the open style to see all the mess of clothes. I’d also like to have more storage for cleaning supplies, pet supplies, and quick access to tools and other household items. Right now it is carpeted but I’d love to tile it one day with a fun pattern or design. Our budget is $4,000.

Mudroom Off the Garage – The Gameplan

This is an exciting one! Here’s my overall gameplan for how to bring this mudroom off a garage to life.

  • Install a fun, but durable, tile
  • Add a wall of hidden storage
  • Bring in a bench and shelves
  • Add a new light fixture, full-length mirror, and runner

The New Layout

Okay, so let’s take a look at this space from above. Sarah was kind enough to provide me with some measurements, which was so helpful and I was then able to plug it into, a free program I use, to figure out the best layout for this space.

mudroom of a garage

Here’s an overhead view. You’ll see that we’re going to add a wall of hidden storage at the top, where the hanging racks used to be. Directly across from it, we’ll have a bench with shelves over it. On that left wall, I’d place a full-length mirror. Finally, we’ll add a runner on the floor, to add a bit of warmth and coziness.

Install Fun New Tile

Before applying sealer

A carpeted mudroom isn’t ideal, so I’d definitely urge the couple to ditch the carpet and replace it with tile. Sarah said she wanted a fun pattern or design on the floor and I really like this one. (In fact, it’s very similar to what we have in our laundry room.) Since her style leans a bit Scandinavian, I didn’t want to go too wild with color. This floor tile adds a bit of fun with the pattern, without bringing in tons of color.

Hidden Storage for the Win

Sam and Sarah are in desperate need of some hidden storage. I would remove the hanging racks and add a custom wall of storage to this area. I’d suggest going with the PAX unit from IKEA. It’s what we’ve used for pretty much every single closet in our house and it’s great. You can fully customize it and even choose from some of their pretty doors, which we’ve never used because ours are all behind closed doors already. There are some IKEA stock issues right now, so that’s one thing to keep in mind.

hidden storage in this mudroom off a garage

I went ahead and played around with their space, and I think they could use three cabinets with different purposes. The left would house their jackets on the hanging rack with drawers below for their shoes. The middle cabinet would be a good spot for tools and cleaning supplies. The right would be a good spot for brooms, vacuums, etc.

wood doors on a closet

All of this would then be hidden behind doors. I really like these light wood doors from IKEA to hide everything. They’re a nice white stained oak which gives off those Scandinavian vibes that they love so much. Plus, hidden storage is such a win!

Add a Leather Bench & Shelving

Bench in a mudroom off a garage

Dina’s Reader OMG! Home Tour

On the opposite wall, I’d bring in some seating, since every mudroom needs a spot to to sit while putting on and taking off shoes! This leather bench is gorgeous and adds some coziness to the space, along with this lumbar pillow and this square one. Above the bench, I’d love to see some shelves so they could add in a bit more design style with accessories. I’d place art, a canister for dog treats, a leather tray for keys or sunglasses, and plants on here to bring in some life and personality. Next to the bench, I’d add a large planter to incorporate more color too!

Complete the Space with Accessories

On the remaining wall, I’d go with a full-length mirror with a gold finish. This would bounce light to brighten up the space and would be a good spot to check yourself out before leaving the house. Then, I’d replace the overhead light (that isn’t even working) with this insanely cool chandelier. I love how it incorporates both the wood and brass into it, to tie the room together. Over the new tile, I’d add this natural fiber rug. I love natural fiber in a mudroom because this type of rug is super durable and the neutral look goes well with the Scandi vibes. The one I chose is sisal, so it should be very durable.

Shop the Look – Mudroom Off a Garage

A mudroom off a garage with Scandinavian style and mid-century vibes

Floor Tile // Mirror // Leather Bench // Black Shelving Unit // Planter // Dog Treat Canister // Leather Tray // Colorful Art // Light Fixure // Sisal Runner // Lumbar Pillow // Square Pillow

What Do You Think?

Guys, this was a fun one! Not only was it fun for me to daydream about having an awesome space like this someday, but I also really enjoyed scrounging up some mid-century and Scandinavian pieces, which I don’t often use in my own home. Plus, I think this plan stays under their $4,000 budget. I’m eager to see if Sarah and Sam bring this space to life and I’ll be sure to share if they do.

Need help with your space? Email [email protected] with the subject line “Reader SOS”. Please include photos, dimensions, information about your style, and your budget.


The Year of Casey

Hey there!

I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m married to Finn & mom to Rory and Ellis. Together we’re creating our dream home in Chicago, one DIY project at a time.