Ok, so technically, if you live in Arizona, you don't need a mud room. This room will likely never see a spec of mud. Dust, yes. Maybe even a scorpion or a rat, or two, but never mud. We call it our little office, and this teeny room off of our kitchen has had lots of different lives in the 10 years we've lived in this house (from laundry room to sewing room to office and back again). I've wanted to build in a bench beneath our pretty antique hooks for a long time, and I finally found the energy to do it.
I used a Kallax shelf from Ikea, in white, placed on its side as the base of my bench. I had to raise it up about five inches, so that the baseboard would fit properly, so first I built a platform for it. Once I secured it to the platform, I used the wall brackets that came with the shelf to secure it to the wall.
The shelf wasn't quite as long as I would have hoped, so I added some bead board to enclose the empty space beside it to make it one long, six foot bench. It kind of drives me crazy that the cubbies are off center, but I've let it go. I had my kids fill out questionnaires about themselves and stuck them with a family photo in the space to make a little time capsule. It will be so fun to find in 20 years when we change our minds about this room again!
I stained some plain boards to match the antique hooks and screwed them in place on top of the shelf. I am no carpenter, but I think they'll do.
I love the clean white bead board. It brightens the whole space. And Stella's little work area has everything she needs. She is an avid letter writer and drawer and homework do-er.
But let's be real. Because mud rooms never ever look the way they do on pinterest in real life, here's a shot of the current (and constant) state of that pretty bench. Backpacks everywhere! But at least I'm not tripping on them in the kitchen anymore.