Coat Closet Chaos
One of the best parts of a renovation for me is solving problems with the original layout.  We had 1200 square feet to work with so literally every inch counted.  Alongside our bathroom another big issue we had was storage for our coats, shoes and boots.  We had a coat closet but like in a lot of old homes was halfway down the hallway.  We could store coats there but it wasn’t practical for shoes or especially wet boots.  We also had a coat rack by the front door and we added a shelf for shoes and both of them were inside the dining room area.  No matter how much we tried to keep things tidy, having things out made it feel cluttered and clutter can make a space feel small in a hurry.  
Once we decided that the old bathroom was going to be an entrance from the deck we straightened out the hallway and build in a mudroom area.  Many times in a reno you have to make sacrifices and we had to sacrifice a few inches in the 2nd bedroom/office to get enough room for the new 36” door and closets.  Those inches have paid off!  We now have two custom built-in closets that can hold all of our coats, storage above for bags, hats and other miscellaneous things and best of all - lots of storage for wet shoes and boots that nicely tuck underneath.  There is also a small bench with some hooks for umbrellas and dog leashes.  
When I think back to how our entrance was always in disarray and see how organized it is now, it's one of the best transformations in our house.  Now that everything is tucked away it feels bigger and more open even though the square footage is essentially the same.  While esthetics are important it is always my goal to maximize the space to make it as functional as possible. 
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