Drop It

Drop It

Returning home after a long day isn’t usually baggage-free: Mail, a gallon of milk, coats, keys and kids come in the door with you. But that doesn’t mean everything needs to end up in a pile of clutter on the kitchen table.

Homebuilders and interior designers are increasingly adding drop zones, a trend that works in any size home.

The drop zone, usually near the most common entryway of the home, is designed to be a specific place to unload daily belongings.

“It’s not meant to be a storage unit,” says Amy Volk, owner of organizing company Simplified Living, Virginia Beach, Virgina. “This is something for your everyday stuff, to come and go and not get lost.”

Some designers will use custom cabinetry for this short-term storage location, but anything from a TV tray to a dresser can work too, Volk says, as long as it’s in a convenient place.

“First figure out what you’re always having in your arms,” she says. “What do you always walk in the door with? That’s all of the things we need space for in your drop zone.”

Individual decorative containers, drawers or lockers are handy to hold miscellaneous materials like keys, sunglasses, hats or umbrellas.

If you come into the house with mail, consider including a paper shredder in your drop zone area. And with today’s many essential electronics, it’s useful to add a charging station, too.

The drop zone is becoming the replacement for the more spacious mudrooms or laundry rooms of the past. “The problem with [a laundry room entrance] is you’re greeted by piles of waiting clothes,” says Paul Foresman, director of business development at Design Basics, based in Omaha, Nebraska.

Instead, they’re focusing on keeping the home’s entryways organized and appealing. “Again, the feedback that we’re getting [is that] the concept of walking into the home, coming in from the garage and into the laundry room, is dead,” Foresman says.

For Design Basics, that means making sure rear foyers and entrances from the garage are more than an afterthought.


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