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7 Ways to Decorate an Entryway

The entryway is the first thing visitors will see when they come into your home, helping you set the tone for the rest of your house. It's also the last thing you'll see when you walk out the door and the area you'll come home to after a long day. That's why making it a beautiful part of your house is so important.

Designed correctly, your entryway can be a bastion of expressive personal style and functional decor. Use this guide from west elm to learn seven ways to decorate an entryway and make the most of this unique space.

1. Pick a Motif

Entry areas are typically small, concise spaces, so you don't usually have a ton of room to tie together disparate elements like multiple patterns and a broad color scheme. Instead, your entryway is an area that requires a focused design that will have the maximum impact.

Before you start designing and shopping, consider what pieces you already have that you want to use, as well as how the motif you'll pick will work with the rest of your home. A variety of themes ranging from modern and sophisticated with abstract prints or stripes to traditional designs with floral rugs and rich wood tones can work depending on your home.

Pick yours and know which direction you're headed in before you begin decorating.

2. Add a Multipurpose Console Table

Whether you're working with a small entryway or an oversized space, a console table is a classic piece for this area. Able to house decorative objects, be the visual focus of the space and handle essentials like keys, almost every entry area can benefit from a console table.

As a rule of thumb, look for a console table that doesn't take up more than 30% of your space even if the area is tight. For narrow hallway-style entry areas, look for a narrow console table around 12 to 16 inches deep.

The style of console table you pick will depend on your home and decor, but when you're shopping, look for something durable and easy to maintain if you've got a large family. Your entry will likely be a high traffic area and the console table will get more use than you might think.

3. Include a Coat Rack

Coat racks are typical in entry areas and choosing a functional one that matches other materials in your space like dark wood or metal can make them a stylish accessory. Although traditionally-styled coat trees are a tried-and-true option, uniquely shaped models can bring a funky touch to your entry, as can vintage-inspired or industrial-looking racks.

Along with hanging coats, these racks are also excellent places to hang items for guests like purses and hats. Kids in the house, as well as adults who work outside the home, will also likely start using this area for bag storage. That can help you keep a clean, tidy entry area with lots of open floor space.

4. Make Space for Seating

Seating is a must in your entry area and the size of your space will determine what will work best. For some entry areas, bench seating is ideal. Covered benches can also include storage below the seat so you'll have a place for things like winter coats, shoes or even sporting equipment.

In small spaces, consider a single decorative side chair or two small ottomans. You'll still be able to sit down to put on a pair of shoes and have a place to drop your bag if it's too heavy for the coat rack.

5. Hang a Functional Mirror

A mirror in your entryway allows you to check your look before you head out the door. It also helps to open up your entryway visually by giving the perception of depth, which is important in many small entry areas.

A simple square, round or rectangular mirror with a beveled edge can work well in many spaces, as can mirrors with basic frames in colors that blend in well with your walls and overall decor. For more impact, opt for something with a bolder frame featuring materials like tile, wrought iron or steel. Colored frames can also breathe life into any entryway, as can uniquely-shaped mirrors.

6. Showcase Your Favorite Art

Mirrors can work wonders in your entry, but they're not your only option for decorating your walls. Wall art like paintings and tapestries also allow you to bring colors into your space to tie your furniture and room together. Even black and white photography can adorn your entry walls if you're going for a more understated style.

Whatever type of art you like, your entry area is a perfect spot to showcase it. As an added benefit, you'll get to see it all the time since it's located right by your front door! Larger spaces or areas with walls on both sides can usually support both a mirror and a piece of art.

7. Light Your Space Properly

Many entry areas get a lot of natural light during the day because of windows and doors on the front of the house. At night though, these spaces are going to need a little bit of help from electric light to look their best.

Wall sconces are an excellent option when matched to metals that are part of your existing furnishings and they won't take up valuable floor space in a small entry. For larger spaces, a floor lamp or table lamp on your console and wall sconces can provide ambient and accent lighting.

Put your lights on a dimmer so you can easily control their intensity and mood.

Decorating your entryway in a style you love can make it a special space for you and your guests. Done right, it also bridges the gap between your exterior and interior. Use these tips to find your style and create the perfect entryway for your home.

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