What is a bootility room? And do you need one?

Harbury bootility

But what if you don’t have the space for both?

Enter the bootility room. Ideal for cleaning muddy paws, getting sweaty sports kit into the wash as soon as you come in, and generally making life around the home a little easier.

Cambridge cabinetry in Forest Green, from £2685 for an eight-unit kitchen, Benchmarx Kitchens.

In the last two years, many of us have spent *a lot* of time enjoying our homes. It makes sense, then, that we’re starting new projects, as we’ve figured out what works well in our spaces – and crucially, what doesn’t.

And as we’ve spent more time outside – I don’t know about you, but I’ve done a lot of walking in all weathers – how we need our homes to work has changed, too.

So. Bootility rooms.

Let’s find out more, hey?

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Arley House bootility
Under-sink curtain in Montrose Treviso smart velvet in Pine 75, £68 per m, Arley House.

What is a bootility?

It’s hopefully clear by now: it’s the hybrid between a boot and utility room, combining the best of both worlds.

Bootility rooms are connections between the indoors and out, a space that stops everyone from dragging mud, grass, and other unpleasant substances through the house. You come in, you take your dirty shoes off, sports kit can go straight into the wash… it’s a multi-purpose space to make life easier. (And save on some cleaning, which, in my book, is always a win.)

What’s in there, though?

That depends on how much floor area you have available – but think about combining key functions.

Tom Howley bootility
The Hartford Collection in Chicory, from £20,000, Tom Howley.

In a utility, you’d have a sink, maybe a secondary fridge or freezer (or both), and often laundry appliances. Some people might have a whole, small secondary kitchen, with a dishwasher, oven, or even a hob.

A boot room, on the other hand, is pretty self explanatory: somewhere to take off your shoes and coats. They may be located by the back door rather than at the front, especially if you have a larger garden. You’ll usually find a bench and some hooks to hang coats, but there might also be wardrobes, storage baskets, or a sink to wash your hands.

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Of course, tiled flooring is a must for easy cleaning.

Cotswolds company bootility
Chester Boot Room, from £469, The Cotswold Company.

Do I need a bootility?

This depends on your needs, of course, but my immediate answer? A resounding yes. Maybe it’s because I have a strict ‘no shoes indoors’ rule at home, but if I could, I’d have one in a heartbeat.

Lochanna Kitchens larder
Easy Access lifestyle larder, from £1816, Lochanna Kitchens.

A bootility is incredibly practical. Whether you only have enough floor area for a bench, a small storage cabinet and a sink or can also fit in a whole laundry centre, secondary kitchen, and plenty of cabinetry and worktop, you can make it your own.

The key thing is that it makes keeping everything neat and tidy easier – and I like having a marked shift between indoors and out. I’d probably keep sweatpants in there, too, so I can change and get comfortable as soon as I get home – but you decide what works for you.

Featured image: Laura Ashley Harbury kitchen collection, from £8000, Symphony.

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