Making an entrance, Curb appeal is important for a house’entry

October 22, 2018

That small space near your front door could be the most important room in your home .

Whether you have an expansive foyer, a narrow hallway or just a small area around your front door, the entry to your home is important because it’s the first thing guests see when they step through the door. It’s also the first thing you see, and it should welcome you home.

Beyond that, the entryway is a high-traffic space that needs to withstand muddy boots, wet umbrellas and anything else you drag in — and provide you with a place to stow all that gear. That’s a tall order, especially if you live in a small space without much of an entry at all.

How do you make the most of the entryway you have? We asked interior designers for advice.

Clear the Clutter

“Entryways set a tone for the rest of the home,” said Aimee Lagos, who founded the wallpaper and home-goods company Hygge & West with Christiana Coop, a childhood friend. “It’s the first thing you see when you enter and the last thing you see when you leave.”

Creating a calm and inviting feeling is essential, but it isn’t easy in a place that tends to collect clutter. Ms. Lagos’s advice: “Having simple storage, such as a shelf for keys or cubbies for shoes, can help keep the chaos at bay.”

An example can be found in “Hygge & West Home: Design for a Cozy Life,” Ms. Lagos and Ms. Coop’s new book, which features a selection of interiors that embody the Danish concept of hygge, or cozy, design. In the foyer of a Sebastopol, Calif., home owned by Rachel Behar, an artist and a friend of Ms. Coop, a round mirror hangs above a simple, minimalist seating area with a tufted bench and a kilim pillow. On the opposite wall is a row of hooks for coats and hats.

“The bench is beautiful and practical, providing a place to put on or take off shoes, or a landing spot for bags,” Ms. Coop said. “The design maximizes the wall space, and Rachel has chosen simple yet stylish elements. The mirror has great lines, and the wood frame complements the bench. Then the pillow adds a splash of color and pattern to keep the area from being too neutral.”

Be Bold

If you’re more of a maximalist, the entry is a space where you can “create drama,” said Cheryl Eisen, the founder of the design firm Interior Marketing Group, by “using a few carefully selected elements.”

One way is to cover the walls in a graphic paper, said Ms. Eisen, who often uses grasscloth wall coverings by Phillip Jeffries in the entryways she designs. Wallpaper “adds texture, depth, and it can make the rest of the elements feel more refined and expensive.”

If wallpaper is out of your budget, a striking paint color can create a similar effect. When Ms. Eisen was staging a multimillion-dollar apartment in Union Square, for example, she painted the entry walls with Benjamin Moore’s Graphite, which “made the simple console, mirror and ottoman really pop,” she said. “We added unexpected texture using a fur throw and a spray of floral greenery.”

For the risk-averse, designers advised starting small: Bold artwork or colorful accessories like mirrors and vases can create a sense of drama and are easily changed out if you decide you don’t like the look.

Balance Fun With Function

“While you want your entryway to make a visual impact, functionality is also important,” said Anne Chessin, an interior designer based in New York City and Fairfield, Conn. “You need a place to put your keys, mail, coat and shoes.”

Her go-to entryway formula includes “a fun, dramatic light fixture, a mirror to check yourself before you leave, a console table to set your keys or mail on, and either fun, colorful art or wallpaper.”


Spend Money Where It Counts

Splurge on investment or statement pieces and save on the accessories, Ms. Chessin advised. For clients in a TriBeCa triplex, she created a modern, industrial look by painting the entryway a cool, bright white (Decorator’s White from Benjamin Moore), installing wide-plank wood floors and splurging on a $3,100 walnut console table from Desiron. She saved on accessories like a captain’s mirror that she bought for $159 on Etsy and vases she found for as little as $13 apiece at Canvas Home.

How do you decide where to splurge? Things that make a strong statement, like a special light fixture or wallpaper, are worth spending money on, she said, but “save on the runner or area rug that will get a lot of wear and tear.”

Camouflage the Coat Closet

An entry with multiple doors can be a challenge, especially in a small space, said Perry Sayles, a Manhattan designer whose Emery Roth-designed prewar apartment has an entry vestibule with a coat closet, and a foyer with doors that open into the living room, kitchen and dining room.

“I realized the closet off the entry vestibule was problematic,” Mr. Sayles said, because guests would often “mistake it for the entry door, and people invariably tried to exit via the closet.”

His solution: Removing the moldings from the closet door and covering the entire space, including the closet door, in a hand-painted silk paper from Griffin & Wong. “Now only the silver door handle indicates there is a closet there,” he said.

In the foyer, Mr. Sayles flipped the other closet so that its door opens into an adjoining room, creating a niche where the original closet door was. “This allowed me to put a 17th-century chest in the niche, along with a lamp and a painting,” he said, “making a more impactful entrance into the apartment.”

Consider the Architecture

For a narrow entry with no windows, CeCe Barfield Thompson, an interior designer in Manhattan, created a bright space with striking details, like an entry door painted in Prussian Blue lacquer, a Fine Paints of Europe color custom mixed by Artgroove that was used throughout the apartment. “The door stands out at the end of the hallway and also creates a strong connection to the other rooms in the home,” she said. “For the walls, we chose a white Venetian plaster with a reflective quality, to give it light and serve as a neutral palette for rooms stemming off the entry.”

Factor in Foot Traffic

In another apartment — for an Upper East Side family with two children and a large stroller that would have damaged an expensive rug — Ms. Thompson hired Dean Barger, a painter specializing in decorative installations and finishes, to stencil a Greek key around the perimeter of the foyer’s wood floors.


Instead of a rug, a high-traffic entry on the Upper East Side has a stenciled Greek-key border. The designer, CeCe Barfield Thompson, had the walls covered in deep purple sisal paper from Clarence House to create a backdrop for a 19th-century Dutch painting.CreditLesley Unruh

“This allowed the client to have a decorative detail that was still practical for a young family,” she said, in lieu of a rug. The walls were covered in a deep purple sisal paper from Clarence House to create a backdrop for a 19th-century Dutch painting that is a family heirloom. An Art Deco-style mirror found online and simple sconces from the Urban Electric Company “keep the space from feeling stuffy,” Ms. Thompson said.

Article credit : NY Times Article Link


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