We’ve all been there. – backpacks strewn about all over the floor, shoes everywhere, and toys that need to find their home immediately. Your family command center is typically the foyer or entryway that accompanies your front door. This is where everyone comes into the house after a long day of work or at school and drops their stuff – also known as “the drop zone.” It seems to always be a mess no matter how tidy you keep the rest of your house. Here are a few tips to help keep that space clean and tidy from now on:
Storage, Storage, Storage
The best thing you can do to prevent clutter in the drop zone is to have a place for everyone to put their stuff. This is where you can get creative with the type of storage you want for the space. Cubbies have become popular in recent years, much like the kind children have in their school classroom. There is a spot for their backpack, their jacket, and any other miscellaneous items they drag through the front door. These can be purchased online, occasionally found in brick and mortar stores, or custom made. Another fun idea is a small wooden bench that opens up much like a hope chest, providing additional storage for hats, mittens, and boots. Another added benefit, it provides everyone with a place to sit while putting on their shoes in the morning.
Mats and Hooks
Head on down to the department or hardware store and pick out your favorite style of mounted hooks. Get the good kind, the ones that need to be mounted to the wall with a screwdriver. Purchase as many hooks as there are people in your family and a few extra for the coats of any friends that may visit. Another idea is to purchase a coat hanger that hangs on the wall – with the hooks already intact.
Next, purchase large plastic mats where the kids can put their wet shoes and boots, rather than leaving them on the floor to get dirty or for someone to trip over. You may need to purchase several of these as well, depending on the number of shoes you expect to be kicked off in the drop zone. The long rectangular kind work best. They can be pushed up right against the wall and take up less space in the drop zone too.
The Little Details Are Important Too
Don’t forget about the smaller items that we cart through our front doors – keys, wallets, purses, and mail for example. These are all things that need a home. How many times have you lost your keys? Probably at least a time or two? If you have a designated spot in your command center, you’ll be less likely to lose them. A small corner or end table might work for these items. You can set the mail on top of it and the keys in the drawer inside of it. Also, this is another opportunity to get creative with fancy hooks like you did with the hooks for the jackets and backpacks.
Perhaps you might want to find a daintier style of hooks to hang keys on? Make sure everyone that has a vehicle or keys that they need to bring with them has a designated hook. You can also add more hooks for smaller items, such as purses and scarves. Smaller wooden shelves or pocket shelves can also be a great place to keep your mail as well!