Style Your Entryway to Make a Great First Impression

by Carlisle Homes

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Having a warm and inviting entryway is the perfect way to say ‘welcome home’. Here’s how to decorate the space so it’s both beautiful and functional.

Your entryway is the first thing guests see when they enter your home and sets the tone for everything that follows, so you’ll want to make it count. On a practical level, it should be easy to move through, with dedicated space to store essentials like bags, coats and umbrellas. Styling-wise, it’s important that your entryway reflects your personal style and blends with the decorative scheme you’ve used elsewhere in your home.

Read on to discover some easy ways to go about it.

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Plenty of natural light, considered storage, statement lighting, and colours and materials that harmonise with the rest of your interior scheme are key to creating a memorable entry area.  

Make it bright and welcoming

Few things can change the look and feel of your entryway like natural light, instantly transforming it into a bright and inviting space.

There are several ways you can bring in more light. For maximum light and wow factor, select a home design with a double-height atrium in the entryway. At Carlisle, we have several atrium designs for you to choose from, which you can view here.  

And you can read all about atriums and how impactful they can be in your home in this blog.

Another way to brighten your entryway is to draw light in from your front garden with a glass front door. This is also a great way to bring the colours and textures of nature into your home, effortlessly blurring the lines between inside and out. Or hang a mirror above a console table to bounce the sun’s rays into every corner of your entry.

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Colour is key to setting the mood in your home, and nowhere is it more important than your home’s entry, which is the first area people will see when they step inside.

Choose the right colours

The best colour for your entryway walls depends on the feel you want to create – the important thing is that it blends with the colours in adjoining rooms.

To make your front entrance feel neat, orderly and open, opt for a light, neutral tone, like white, cream or greige. To set a calming vibe, try soft greens and blues. If warmth and cosiness are your goals, consider a warm, earthy hue like terracotta. Or make a bold statement with patterned wallpaper or wall panelling in a colour that contrasts with the wall above it.


Bring in warmth with a runner

For an instant hit of colour, pattern and cosiness, lay a hallway runner. If you have tiled or timber floors, you’ll also find it’s a terrific way to soften the space, and pick up any dirt that gets tracked in.

The material and weave type you choose matters. You’ll want to choose a runner that lays flat so it’s not a trip hazard, in a durable fibre that will stand up to heavy footfall. A washable runner, such as those at Miss Amara, is a smart choice for busy homes as you can simply pop it in the machine when it gets grubby.

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While a single artwork over a console is a classic choice for entry areas, you can create just as much impact with a gallery wall of smaller pieces, such as framed family photographs.  

Add a focal point

Every well-designed room needs a focal point, and your front entry is no exception.

There are options aplenty; create an eye-catching vignette with a console table beautifully styled with flowers and some coloured glassware, hang an eye-catching artwork at the end of the hallway, add a striking occasional chair, or create a feature wall with some gorgeous, patterned wallpaper.

For feature wall ideas, don’t miss this blog.


Keep clutter at bay

If you don’t plan ahead, your entryway can quickly become a dumping ground for shoes, bags and the various bits and pieces the family brings inside each day. Smart storage is the solution.

Add a slim console table with drawers and shelving where you can pop a tray or trivet to create a ‘drop zone’ for small items, like keys and sunglasses. Pop a couple of decorative baskets underneath it to house items like dog leads. Consider adding wall hooks so you’ve got somewhere to hang coats and hats. If you feel you need more entry storage to keep clutter at bay, consider commissioning a bespoke joinery piece with deep drawers and open shelves.

Tip: When choosing freestanding furniture for your entry, like a console table or bench seat, start with the largest piece and work your way down. It can also be useful to map out the measurements and placement with masking tape on the floor. This way you can avoid buying an overly large piece that will impede traffic flow.

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A decorative mirror doesn’t just add a touch of style to your entry, it boosts light, amplifies the sense of space, and provides a handy spot to check your hair and makeup.  

Hang a mirror

A fabulous mirror makes a great addition to an entrance area, not only for a last-minute check-over before heading out, but also to bounce light around and make the area feel bigger and brighter.

Angular, square or rectangular mirrors will suit traditional schemes, while round, arched or oval styles create a softer look that works well with coastal and minimalist schemes. For a modern, quirky take, consider a starburst mirror style. 

In terms of size, a larger mirror will suit a spacious entry, while a compact mirror will suit the proportions of a narrow space.

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A bench seat in your front entry is one of those pieces you’ll wonder how you ever lived without, providing the perfect spot to pop heavy bags or sit and take off your shoes or boots.  

Provide a spot to sit

Adding a bench seat in timber, rattan or upholstered in fabric or leather not only gives you somewhere to sit and remove your shoes or boots, but it injects a decorative feel into what is an otherwise practical space. Choose a piece with storage beneath it, such as a shoe bench, and you’ll have an extra spot to store footwear that’s sure to come in useful.

Other hallway-seating options include folding stools or upholstered cubes, which are great if your entry area is on the small side.

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Brighten your front entry with a stunning light fixture, be it a modern chandelier, a pair of classic wall sconces, or a pretty lamp on the console table.  

Don’t forget lighting

To dial up the drama and create a warm, welcoming glow, add a statement light to your entry. This could be in the form of a decorative chandelier, a pair of beautiful wall sconces either side of the console table, a sculptural floor lamp beside an accent chair or bench, or one or two table lamps.

Proportion is key. If you’ve got a large, atrium-style entry, you can afford to go big and bold with your chandelier or pendant light (or hang a cluster at varying heights). But if space is limited and your ceiling is low, wall and table lamps that won’t visually clutter up your entry may be a better choice.  

Keen to know which pendant-light styles are trending in 2024? You’ll find the answers in this blog.

Tip: If you’re hanging a chandelier or pendant in your entry or hallway, leave at least 210cm of space from the base of the shade so people can move beneath it comfortably.

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Vibrant greenery is just the thing to add life to your front entry, while drawing the outside in. Try a cluster of potted plants, a hanging plant in a corner, or even a mini fruit tree.

Draw the outside in

Whether it’s a little indoor plant on your console, a cluster of pots in a corner, or a beautiful mini fruit tree by the front door, adding some greenery to your entry is an easy way to bring the outside in and make your entry more vibrant and inviting.

Just be sure to choose a plant that can tolerate the inevitable draughts and temperature changes that occur in an entry where the front door gets opened and closed regularly, otherwise you’ll find yourself having to replace it regularly. Some hardy options include fig trees, snake plants, umbrella plants, Chinese evergreens or a bird-of-paradise plant.

Follow these simple tips and you’ll create a warm and welcoming entry in no time!

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Interested to see how the experts create a show-stopping entry? Visit one of our 70+ display homes across Melbourne, which have all been styled by our talented interior design team, incorporating the latest and greatest trends. You’re guaranteed to walk away with loads of brilliant decorating ideas for your own home!


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