Maybe it’s your entryway table, or maybe it’s a corner of your kitchen counter. Regardless of where exactly it is, it’s a spot we all have: a catchall for mail, keys, dog leashes, and more.
For Angela Treat, the blogger behind Hand Treated Home, it was an area right off of her garage. The new-build home in Phoenix had a narrow, empty space that served as a pass-through from the garage to the kitchen, but without adequate cabinetry, it was essentially dead space that led to a clutter-filled countertop.
Besides being an obvious organizational nightmare, this sort of unintentional catch-all was beginning to mar the aesthetic of Treat’s brand new kitchen. So, she set out to turn the previously unused hallway space into a small, but highly functional mudroom.
To do so, Treat lined the right wall with floor-to-ceiling upper and lower cabinets from IKEA, as well as a butcher block countertop in between. In the upper cabinets, she stores a number of her DIY materials for easy access. The lower cabinets house more of the family’s day-to-day belongings. On one side, she stashes items she uses to take her dogs on walks (leashes, etc.); on the other, she’s designated a drawer for mail and another for files. There’s even room for a paper shredder, so she can easily sort through and destroy unneeded documents. The countertop has a bowl for masks, keys, and wallets, plus an alarm system and the occasional briefcase or purse.
Treat says she was drawn to IKEA’s cabinets because of how functional they are—crucial in a space like a pint-sized mudroom. The retailer has tons of different drawer and cabinet sizes, plus makes specially fitted organizational inserts for any number of use cases to make the system feel custom sans the price tag of more high-end millwork.
Still, she wanted to make sure the aesthetic factor was there, since the space is largely open to her new, high-design kitchen. “I’m currently very inspired by Studio McGee,” Treat says. “I wanted to tap into that transitional style.” To do just that, she swapped IKEA fronts for Semihandmade’s brand new DIY Quarterline doors from Sarah Sherman Samuel in a gorgeous greige paint, Clare’s Flatiron, then added matte black hardware to the drawers and doors.
To finish off the space and make it feel like a complete room rather than another drop zone, she also added a ceramic tile backsplash in a picket fence style and installed an easy-to-clean, but sophisticated tile floor.
The resulting mudroom area ties in perfectly with the kitchen, says Treat. The greige mirrors the veining in the counters in a subtle way that makes it feel like they go together, but still gives each space room to have its own personality, she explains. And best of all, the family has had no trouble keeping both rooms clutter-free.