Updating an Existing Mud Area

Building a mud area at my sister’s house got me thinking about our mud area at our house. Our mud area was built when the house was built, and we use it ALL the time… backpacks, purses, jackets, lunch boxes, shoes, and more! But, I figured I could make it a little bit cuter AND a bit more functional. So I did!

First, I decided to add wood across the bench top. I just love this look- stained wood across the top of something. I knew I was going to cut the pieces of wood to be 44″ long- that was the width of the bench plus about 1 inch hangover. The trickiest part to this is figuring out what size wood to use that will fit the best for the depth of the object. For example, our bench was 19″ deep, and I figured there would ideally be 1/2″ wood overhang… so 19.5″ would be the goal. You then have to think about the width of the different wood sizes. Here are my thought processes: 😉

**1x4s are 3.5 inches wide, and if I used 5 of those, I would only get to 17.5″… and if I used 6 pieces, that put me up to 21″.

**1x6s are 5.5″ wide… if I used three, it would only be 16.5″, and if I used 4, that would put me at 22″.

**1x3s are 2.5″ wide… if I used 8 of these, that would put me at 20″. Winner winner chicken dinner!

**Note: You could always do a combination of wood sizes, but I opted to use the same.

I cut the 1×3 wood to be eight pieces at 44″ long. I stained the wood, let them dry, and glued them down onto the bench with wood glue. I put anything heavy I could find to weigh the wood down, and those suckers were on there good! I polyurethaned over the wood to protect the wood better, and now our bench update is complete!

The next thing I wanted to do was add a shelf. We had a lot of wasted space above where our hooks are, and I thought a shelf would be perfect.

I built the L-shaped shelf holders using spare 2×2 wood. I cut an 8″ piece (to go under the shelf) and a 6″ piece. I wood-glued them together and then screwed them together where they met. I made a 45 degree cut on each end of a spare 1×2 wood, in order to support the two 2x2s. I screwed this piece in on both ends. I repeated this for the second shelf holder. I painted both holders white.

We had spare cabinet-grade plywood that was about 10″ in width. I cut this down to 44″ in length and painted it white.

We screwed in the shelf holders at a height where the items hung on the hooks wouldn’t be bothered, but not too high that we couldn’t easily reach it. We screwed the shelf into the top of the brackets. We used wood putty to cover the screws, and then I sanded and touch-up painted the holders.

Voila! Our newly updated mud area! I am loving it.

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