I have to admit I'm a bit of an organization freak and so it was secretly killing me to have to stick my son's paperwork and homework on the side of the fridge the last two years. It worked well enough since he was the only one in school but with Stella going off to Kindergarten I needed some organization! We recently turned our sun room from playroom to mudroom. I decided to have my homework system be in the new mudroom where they grab bags, shoes and coats for school.
Above: how it started... we had a "nook" in the sun room, perfect for a bench seat
Above: and this is how it turned out! There is a shoe basket for each child under the bench, labeled with their name. I love the idea of these chalkboard plates on baskets but hated having to constantly re write smeared names so I painted their names on instead. These baskets are from World Market. I have seen them in store if they aren't online anymore. I have also seen similar ones at Target. The book bag hooks are the "School house numbered hooks" from Potterybarn. The bins above each hook are where they stick their homework folder...Ah, organization is born! The bins are the "Industrial metal wall organizer" from Restoration Hardware, except I had to take the bins off the very cool canvas strip they come on to make them fit my area. Their whole collection is super cute and would be very cool hanging anywhere to organize kids papers or books.
I have been searching for a wall calendar I could put practices and homework on for both kids. I found several of the dry erase options that were functional but not as decorative as I wanted. I wanted to hang it in my mudroom which is a pretty visible area to the rest of the house so this is what I ended up making!!
The calendar day spaces are paint chips! You just need to get a picture frame with glass. I ended up buying navy blue card stock paper to serve as background. I bought letter stickers to spell out "school days" and organized the paint chips in a color scheme that looked good in that room. I wanted the larger paint chips because I am writing in stuff for 3 kids so I just made a M-F calendar because of space limitations. You could also get a larger frame or smaller paint chips or turn the frame horizontal to fit a full week across. I love this! It has worked really well to organize due dates!
So across the way from the bench and homework area is where we took out a huge coat closet and replaced it with a mudroom build in. We had 2 coat closets on our main floor and all that was in this back closet were little short munchkin coats and all this space wasted from the coats to the floor. See before picture below....
I still needed some extra coat space besides a hook for each kid's coat, which is where a lot of mudroom layouts were not working for us. And since my mudroom was open to some other spaces in our house, it wasn't going to work to have it look like a tornado went through every day. But I love the look of mudrooms and like the idea of an area they can sit and take off shoes, coats, hats etc. So after some planning, below is a photo of the after!
So, a hook for each kid, again. A whole lot of space for baskets with hats and gloves below and stuff that I don't want them to reach above (like play-doh and paint). The background of this build in is meant to look like salvaged wood but its actually just wallpaper!! You will see lots of wallpaper in small spaces throughout my house and blog. I looove wallpaper....And lastly but most important, the two side doored spaces hold the rest of their coats. And since kids coats are pretty short, you can double up on rods inside. See below.
The baskets are felt woven baskets from Target stores ( but do not appear to be online) and I love them because they are pliable so you don't need them to fit the space exactly. The ones I have are brown but I also saw them in a charcoal color. If you need wider ones I have seen similar "woven felt baskets" at West Elm. The felt baskets are great because you can tie a label or in my case, clip them on to the front. I found corrugated paper at Hobby Lobby and premade paper tags and put together my own labels using these clips to secure them on. See below...
You could also tie on a mini chalk board or hole punch a premade tag and tie it on with twine or cut your own custom shape from cool paper. The letters are just sticker letters but you could print ones also.