DIY Mudroom in a Weekend

June 13, 2024

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Befores, afters, mood boards, plans, failures, wins. We’ve done a lot of projects, and they’re all here. 

We have a long-standing relationship with DIY, and love rolling our sleeves up and making it happen. 

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Now that we’ve added an overhead light fixture to the mudroom, we only have to wait on installing the new door, some wallpaper and some locker hooks for the project to be completely done! We’re so…close…! As we’ve shared our progress, I’ve gotten some questions about what to do if you want to get a similar look to our mudroom as a DIY project. While there are a lot of custom elements in our room that were really intentional, I have some ideas on ways you could achieve a similar look with your own handiwork, whether you want to put something together over time or get a quick upgrade in just a weekend!

Chris Loves Julia | Mudroom in process

Black & White Tile | Striped Grasscloth Wallpaper

The Floors

I might as well start off with what might be the trickiest one. The floor pattern I wanted to create in the mudroom was extremely intricate with specialty cut tile borders and carefully laid mosiac tile, and I decided to leave that project to the experts. But we have created our own penny tile patterned floor (photo below) in a more simple pattern, and it turned out beautiful! If you want a similar look to the powder room below, you can pick up these white tiles and these black tiles.

Chris Loves Julia | DIY penny tile

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Or if you’re trying to get a quick black & white look in just a couple of hours instead of days, try laying our Lawrence Black & White FloorPops, which have a subtle wood grain look but are peel and stick floor tiles! They’re water-resistant and wipe up easily so they’re great for a mudroom or entry. We have the same type of FloorPops in our home gym and girls’ bathroom, and they’ve really stood the test of time.

The Cabinetry

Chris Loves Julia | Red lockers in the mudroom

Costwold Knobs | Bromwich Pulls | Bin Pulls

When it comes to the cabinetry, I know it can seem daunting to try to get the custom look. If you use ready-to-assemble cabinetry, I would work really hard on trying to bring in a size that fits your needs. For instance, find something tall that works as a locker. And instead of drawers, maybe the cabinetry just sits on a raised platform with open sections that have baskets for shoes.

Chris Loves Julia | Semihandmade cabinets in the Fullmer Kitchen Makeover
Semihandmade cabinet fronts in the Fullmer Kitchen Makeover, 2019

Our friends at Semihandmade just launched their own line of cabinet to that you can assemble, and they offer both white fiberboard or maple plywood options. The best part is that you get their DIY shaker doors that you can paint to the color you want (if you’re matching our look, that’s Preference Red by Farrow & Ball.) And if you want to skip painting the doors, we have a line of doors in both shaker and slab fronts in three beautiful wood-grain colors: Dusk, Cove, and Saddle. I’d go with Saddle if you’re looking for a warm, rich tone that leans the same direction as what we have.

The Molding

Chris Loves Julia | Mudroom with red cabinets finished with custom trim

One trick I love to do with ready-to-assemble cabinetry is add trim from the floor to the ceiling to make it look even more custom. I have a whole post about how we did this with the IKEA Pax system for our dressing room in our Idaho house, and if you go even further back to the house before that, I have another post where you can see we just added crown molding to the same system!

Chris Loves Julia | Dressing room in the Modern Cottage home

Bench Seat | Rug (vintage) | Chair (similar) | Oval Mirror (custom) | Vanity (similar) | Chandelier

To get the look of our recessed bench seat, you’ll just need some beadboard panels that you paint the same color as the cabinets. Here’s how we installed beadboard on our ceiling in the bedroom, but same rules apply for a wall. I recommend spraying vs. rolling paint when it comes to beadboard, planking, wainscoting or box trim. It’ll save you a lot of time and headache!

The Hardware

Chris Loves Julia | Dog station in mudroom

Cotswold Knobs | Bromwich Pulls | Mirror Tile | Copper Bowls

New hardware is easy to DIY, and there are so many price point options! I love mixing metals and mixing styles — it’s more visually interesting, but the latter can also serve a purpose based on the application. I went with an aged brass on the pulls, from the locker handles to the cabinet knobs to the bin pulls. It’s just so beautiful against the rich red. Then for the locker hooks (which are soon-to-be-installed), I’m leaning toward a polished nickel to balance out the warm tones.

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The Lighting

Chris Loves Julia | Mudroom with cabinets in Preference Red by Farrow & Ball

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We have a couple sources of light in the mudroom (always my go-to tip), and I have some ideas for you here too. If you’re comfortable with wiring electricity — and even if you’re not, we even have a beginner tutorial on the blog! — then go ahead and hard-wire a picture light over a bench or mirror for some accent lighting that creates a beautiful vignette. But if you’d rather skip it, there are battery-powered picture lights where you only need to attach the light to the wall for a much quicker install.

For overhead lighting, I chose a more vintage-looking pendant that Chris installed one afternoon, but there are so many other options that were on the table. It’s fun to look back at my mudroom mood board to see I had gone even more industrial to play off the delicate tile work.

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Now you’re ready for your own mudroom makeover! Tag me in your projects so I can see what you create!

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What do you think?

  1. Thanks for sharing your knowledgeable content with us. Impressed with the precision and creativity of the outdoor lighting installers—my garden looks stunning.

  2. Anne says:

    It looks beautiful. I love the floor with the red of the cabinetry. Just wondering how Cricket reacts to the mirrored tiles …

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