Earlier today, I talked a little about the Husky storage bench, and my feelings towards it as a potential garage entry mudroom solution.
Some of the comments mentioned boot trays, and I thought it would make a good follow-up to talk about my favorite one.
Shown here is the IKEA Baggmuck boot tray. It measures 2′ 4″ x 1′ 2″, and is the best boot tray I have used in recent years.
A couple of years ago, I bought a boot tray every season, usually from the local home improvement store or supermarket. And every year, I grumbled about it, because they were all horrible creations that could never fit in anywhere.
I could never figure out why all the boot trays on display at the local stores had very rounded or flowery molded edges. I just wanted a simple rectangular boot tray, and I couldn’t find one anywhere.
I might have looked online – once or twice – but the pricing seemed ridiculous. $15-20 for a boot tray, when the ones sold locally were under $5? It didn’t make sense to me.
Back when we rented, there was no easy way to hose off or even rinse off our boot trays. So at the end of winter, it would go out for recycling. Things are different now, but I still don’t know if I could justify a boot tray that costs more than $5.
I think it was 3 years ago when I discovered IKEA’s $4 Baggmuck boot tray. I came across it and bought 2 of them. I bought a couple more since then.
One is holding some work boots. Another is near the garage door since I never put it away. It’s my “snow shovel rest,” and has been my “sharp garden tool rest” a couple of times. I lean a tool against the wall or workbench, and the work end rests on the plastic boot tray, so that it doesn’t mar the floor or spread melted snow everywhere.
Last year I repurposed two for the snowblower, because I was tired of having to squeegee melted snow from the floor and kept putting off buying a washing machine pan. (As an aside, what do you put your snow blower on after use to avoid the spread of melted snow water?)
The IKEA boot tray is molded from thin plastic, but it’s durable. Its rectangular shape allows it to more easily fit in different spaces – under a shoe rack, against the wall, between a workbench and the walking path, and so forth.
I know it might sound ridiculous to favor one $4 boot tray over another, but I’ve had so many difficulties with the curvy and flowery ones over the years.
I’m picky about snow brushes. (Mallory’s heavy duty snow brush is still my favorite.) And also snow shovels that can fit in my car. (I have an older version of the Voile Telepro avalanche shovel.)
And for shoe and boot trays, I’ve grown a liking for IKEA’s simple and inexpensive design.
Looking at Amazon, there are a couple of designs that I might be willing to try. I can understand spending more for better aesthetics, a bigger size, or something more durable for areas that would see heavy use. IKEA’s boot tray is pretty thin, but I haven’t had it show signs of cracking, warping, or wearing out yet.
But for some of the other products, twice the price doesn’t seem to give you twice the functionality.
In my post about the Husky storage bench, Gary mentioned Gardener’s Supply boot trays, and those caught my attention. One design is made in England and has a much taller rim. Another, also made in England, has a tall rubber grid. Maurice mentioned a Pottery Barn design, which although pricey, has more focus on aesthetics, with an iron grid inside that I would also presume helps to keep the boot tray weighed down and in place.
Now it’s your turn – do you use a boot tray, or some other means of controlling dirt, mud, or snow from spreading beyond your shoes or boots when you take them off?