I have a small entryway.
Not tiny-Manhattan-apartment-small, but small enough that it can only accommodate a shallow table for dropping keys and setting a lamp. Shallow like 8 inches. I looked for the better part of a year for something to fit.
You might remember the aqua dresser that lived in the entryway for awhile, and the beautiful combination it made with the gray walls (Sherwin Williams Gray Clouds in flat finish).
After a few years of not being able to open the front door all the way because of the dresser, it just didn’t make sense. You can see here how deep the piece is.
Well I finally got lucky at my local Homegoods (what don’t they have?) and found a right-sized console (exactly 8 inches deep!) for $250 with storage and enough top surface area for two lamps. It was more than I wanted to pay because I’m still…always…ever on the thrifty side, but I am doing everything possible to stay in this house and not be lured by the new McMansions down the street. (I like my small mortgage, and the prospect of paying cash for my kids’ college.) So it’s all about downscaling the size of the furniture in the house to really fit our house and the way we live in it.
The mirror I found at Kirklands for $50 was a total surprise. (I had been stalking West Elm for months, hoping for a sale on their $250 version.)
You can see how perfectly the narrow cabinet tucks into the space on the wall.
You can also see that I’ve painted the back of the door black to harmonize with other parts of the downstairs, creating more of a focal point and building interest and contrast in the entryway. Now the front door can open fully, letting in lots of natural light.
The door is painted Sherwin Williams Cardinal Red. (I get asked.) When the door is open it produces a layered effect with the console table and entry wall, and doesn’t feel crowded.
I’m particular about light bulbs because my design plan is intended to play out on my walls. Light is a powerful design element. The way certain bulbs throw light up a wall and refract it around a room is as impactful as hanging artwork. And WAY cheaper.
It’s stunning in person. The bulbs are GE Auradescent 40W (they don’t make higher than 40W in this style). I strongly recommend them for the best effect and to really get that designer look. I have tried several of the sparkle LED bulbs but nothing so far can produce the same effect as these lovely bulbs. (You can order them at this link, and I only wish GE paid me to say so.)
Last, you’ll notice the rug is centered in the entryway. This is KEY to making your entryway feel like it’s own “real” room. Don’t jam the rug up against the base of the door. Let it breathe and let it work as a centerpiece underfoot, uniting the console on the wall with the door. And…since the average human stride length is 32 inches (it must be so, the internet told me) the odds of someone getting dirt on those first few inches of hardwood are pretty slim.
That gorgeous rug is from a dear friend who brought it back from Afghanistan. (That’s so like her…to be in warzone hell but thinking of us back home and finding items we would love. Blessings on you sweetie!)
I hope this post brought some inspiration for your entryway and a few easy design tricks you can use anywhere.