I have to admit a while back, I didn’t think we would have snow by the Holidays. Two weeks before Christmas I was still going out with just a light coat and shoes that are not snow friendly. Today is a different story, not just with me but also with my kids. All of a sudden they have to wear snow pants, boots, mittens, hats and winter coats to school! Fortunately I have those things for them by now but what about a place to put all the outerwear when the kiddies come home from school or in from playing in the yard? When we first moved into our house the door from the outside entered directly into my kitchen right by the refrigerator. I have to tell you it drove me nuts. There was a trail of hats, mittens, coats, snow pants and boots all through my small galley kitchen. There had to be a better solution that would work for everyone. Not to mention the baby carrier, my purse and all my things, where do I put them? After some grief and lots of thinking I arrived at a couple solutions and I think you can implement them into your own home too.
If you have an entry like I did there is not any wall space to hang coats and such. I created a “drop zone just outside the door in my garage. Affixed with a boot mat and hooks in the wall for coats and snow pants. Yes, it is cold out there, but when I had a chance I would bring the items in and throw wet things in the dryer and set the boots to dry in our front entry. When the items were dry I hung them on hooks I screwed into the inside of the closet door. Three on the top part and 3 on the bottom so everyone could reach.
If you have a small entry with either no closet or a small closet, hooks are your best friends. I like the hooks mounted 2 ways. One, hang in 2 parallel rows a high row and a low row. Second, one lower row can work well for all members of the family. With these ways any child can reach the hooks to hang their own coat. A smaller child can use a step stool so you don’t have to hang the hooks to low and change often. Family hats and mittens can be stored underneath in individual bins, boot can be set next to them or on a boot tray in the hall way.
This solution is for those of you that have a large hall closet or mudroom. I am a firm believer in organizing systems. Check out Rubbermaid, Container Store and Ikea there are many organizing systems to choose from for every budget. These systems make the best use of space with many different solutions. You might want different cubbies for all the family members or a row of hooks with a shelf above and below. Whatever you choose examples of these configurations can usually be seen on the company’s individual websites.
Do you see, there is a light at the end of the tunnel with all the shoes and coats. All you need is a little direction and creativity. You are a smart cookie and any of these solutions will add a bit more peace to your everyday routine. Remember if the pile always ends up in one spot think about what you can implement to alleviate the pile and make life simpler for you, the busy, busy Mom. Cheers!
Expert Mommy, Julie Verleger