The last thing we see when we leave the house each morning and the first thing we see when we get home at the end of a long day is often overlooked. The entryway to your home is not only an important element conceptually, but one that, if thoughtfully organized, is key in our ability to go about our day more easily and seamlessly. While the idea of an entryway may conjure up images of a grand staircase and spacious foyer, a functional and organized entryway doesn’t have to be vast or complicated. Keep reading for some essential organization and design ideas that will help you create an entryway in your home, no matter the size.
If you’re not yet convinced of the importance of even establishing an entryway, we understand. It’s not a room, and it’s often not more than a few feet of space. But an entryway is an important element in your home on both a conceptual and a functional level. For both you and your guests, this is the first impression of your home, the first introduction into your space.
Our product development team explains that the entryway is the threshold you cross as you move from public to private, a “transitionary space that leads into your private life.” So, in creating a home that acts as your sanctuary, it’s important that you think about how this threshold is designed in order to “find opportunities to stop those public things from bleeding into your space.” Your home is your haven – thinking about how you can thoughtfully design the area in which you enter that haven in such a way that it remains as relaxing and comforting as possible will help in keeping the stress and noise of everyday life outside.
A good first step in creating your entryway is to think about how you need it to function. Which items do you need easy access to as you leave the house and which items do you want to shed as you get home? This is often the place for coats, shoes, keys, sunglasses, umbrellas, or bags and purses. Thinking about what is essential to keep in this space will inform how it’s set up. Do you have a place to sit down to put on and remove shoes? Do you have hooks for coats and jackets? Do you have a surface to leave your keys? Keeping furniture pieces in this space small and keeping the number of pieces to a minimum will also help in forcing a sense of organization. The fewer places you have to become disorganized or messy, the fewer opportunities you have to lose your keys again. An organized entryway also acts as an immediate mood stabilizer as you get home at the end of the day: you are being welcomed into the space that is all yours. Being met with a mess is far from inviting.
In keeping with the notion of organization, finding furniture pieces for your entryway that can serve multiple purposes and straddle the balance between form and function will help to create harmony in this space. A bench that provides seating and hidden storage is great for housing winter hats and gloves. A console table with multiple surfaces can act as a means of both housing important items and displaying them. While keeping a small space like an entryway tidy will help you in ensuring you have everything you need as you leave the house, it’s also important to think about the feeling you want to create as you enter your home. Which objects make you happy? Which inspire feelings of home? We are given a plethora of options for hiding away clutter and are inundated with tips and tricks for keeping our spaces tidy, but when those efforts serve to remove any essence of our personalities from our spaces, they perhaps hinder more than help us. Our product development team asks, “is it ‘clutter’ because it is a build-up of things you don’t need, or are they actually things that you enjoy?” If you consider how the objects in your home make you feel, then “clutter” isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
While each piece created by a furniture designer is made with a specific purpose and function in mind, it’s important not to feel restricted by a designer’s intentions when choosing furniture, especially for a small space. Perhaps a floating nightstand or sofa table wasn’t intended for your entryway, but if it works to create that organized, welcoming threshold into your sanctuary, then why not make use of it? Part of that versatility is in how you conceptualize both the space and the process of creating the space. Feeling the pressure to have a ‘completed’ design right away can lead to some choices that may not benefit you in the long run, so take your time when you’re designing your entryway (or any other space in your home). You might find the perfect piece when you’re not looking for it, or you might find ways to incorporate those objects that truly welcome you home after you give yourself time to take stock of what’s around you and how each object makes you feel.
Creating an entryway is not reserved solely for those of us with the luxury of expansive homes or roomy condos. The threshold between the outside, public world and the inside, private haven where you relax, share meals, and enjoy the company of friends and family is important to consider and can be easily created with some thoughtfulness and creativity. Making it as easy as possible to find all of the items you need when you leave the house and to leave behind all of the items you no longer need as you enter your home will leave you more relaxed, organized, and calm.