When it comes to the different spaces in your home, the entryway is ground zero for making a statement. It’s responsible for making that all-important first impression, and it sets the tone for the rest of your environment. No matter how big or small the space, it’s important to give it the attention it deserves to create a space that offers nothing short of a grand entrance.
Seattle-based interior designer Rebecca West says your entryway should provide guests with a quick glimpse of the personalities of the people who live there. “If you are a fun, quirky family, then guests should have a sense of that just by standing in your foyer. If you are a simple, minimalist person, then your entry should show that in both its functional and decorative elements,” she says. “Every entry should work for and fit the family who uses it.”
Making sure it’s a good fit for your personal use means creating something that serves as a “landing zone” for the people who live there. “It should be a place where it’s easy to put down your keys, take off your shoes, and hang up your coat, so that you can shed the work day and slide into just being at home.”
Making It Home
One of the best ways to create a great entryway is to clear out the clutter and decide on a look. “Entryways get a lot of abuse and get shabby and crowded over time,” West says. “Clearing the clutter is the first step, but to quickly change the mood, first try a fresh coat of paint.”
Decorating with items like a mirror and coat hooks is functional and adds more personality to the space. A rug is a nice finishing touch, but make sure it’s large enough to fill the space in order to make a design statement. “A mirror can make a small entry feel more open, and hooks are a great opportunity to add some whimsy,” West says. “It’s all about scale and personality. Every item in your entry needs to add to the space.”
She recommends installing a big light fixture that fits your style and then adding a large rug and an oversized poster or mirror. “Then you’ll have an entryway that helps you know you are home.”
Small Spaces, Big Statements
Even a small area can be transformed into a welcoming entryway. Think outside the box, and use bold colors in a small space to give the area greater impact. “If you don’t have a lot of wall space, or it’s too connected to the other walls in the room, put a bold color on the interior of your front door,” West suggests. “There is no reason it has to be white, and a sassy red, splashy teal, or moody black can instantly define your entry and your personality.”
Go Big and Go Home
Regardless of the size, West says every place needs a landing zone to greet you when you walk through the door. “Even a skinny ledge can be a useful spot for catching your mail and keys, and fun wall hooks become even more useful in a tiny space,” she says. “In general, go as big as you can. A tiny entry can really shine with a giant piece of art or wall mirror, a generous rug, and a set of cool wall hooks.”
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