A utility room with a sink and flowers.
Tria Giovan and Howard Puckett

The Beauty of Utility

There is no reason a utility room can?t be as beautiful as any other room in the house. This pantry/mudroom, which connects the home?s living room to both kitchen and screened porch, has the same floors, cabinetry, and windows are the kitchen.


A room near the kitchen with cabinets and a deep sink.
Southern Accents, Tria Giovan

Expand the Kitchen

Next to the kitchen is a "garden room" that extends the kitchen's functionality and serves myriad of purposes. The deep farmhouse sink makes this an ideal spot for pruning and arranging flowers.


A mudroom with a sink and dishwasher.
Southern Living, Van Chaplin

Potting Room Deluxe

This workroom/potting room at the rear of the garage has a narrow sink with double faucets set into a poured concrete counter , which was stained green and given a rock-face edge. A small fridge doubles as a cooler for cut flowers. Painted tongue-and-groove paneling makes the space feel fresh and tidy but also resists mildew.


This laundry room/potting room has red walls and mosaic tiles.
Cooking Light, John Hagan

At the Ready

In this combination laundry and potting room, a swiveling cabinet door is hung with hooks for organizing hand tools.


A potting room right off of a porch filled with plants.
Cooking Light, John Hagan

A Simple Plan

A potting room can be as simple as a small shed or corner of the garage, as this one is, as long as there's a nearby water source. The most important feature is a counter at a comfortable height for performing the otherwise back-breaking task.


A mudroom with an antique sink and bench.
Cottage Living, Minh + Wass

Floral Dream

This mudroom serves as a flower arranging workroom. The owner added decorative legs to the extra-large sink, which is often filled with freshly cut blooms for the yard.


A mudroom with blue cabinets an l-shaped countertop.
Cottage Living, Minh + Wass

Tiny Spaces

Even this small kitchen can double as a garden room. With all of necessities at hand (water, pruning shears, and a vase) beautiful arrangements are just moments away.


A mudroom with an antique sink.
Cottage Living, Paul Whicheloe

...And the Kitchen Sink

This antique sink may have originally come from a laboratory. So heavy it took four men to carry it, the owner has placed it on a solid slate counter with steel supports. This deep basin is large enough for flowers and dishes.

Partially adapted from Design Idea Book, Oxmoor House 2007

Learn more decorating secrets from designer showhouses purchase Design Idea Book.

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