The Anatomy of a Bright Entry

Sorry for the late start this week.  I’ve had family in town and I feel like I am just getting my routine back together.  In February I focused on bedrooms and in March I talked about kitchens…this month I am going to focus on all the little transitional spaces in a house.  Stairways, hallways, entryways, porches….all those pass-through spaces that are easy to overlook, but can make a big difference in the feel of your home.  I’m starting at the front of the house this week with a beautiful entry designed by John Morris Architects.  It’s such a pretty, but sophisticated, space that feels like spring!

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The entry is a very small room that serves many functions.  And, in order to function well, it should be free of anything that detracts from those functions.  It serves as a place to greet guests, and so you need a place to hang their coats and store their shoes.  It serves as a place to finish getting ready before you head out the door, so you need a place to sit to tie shoes and check your make-up one last time.  This entry has ample floorspace to make coming and going easy, and isn’t littered with furniture only added for decorative purposes.  If you are looking for a similar simple entry in your own home consider the functions of everything in the space…if something is purely decorative consider adding something just as aesthetically pleasing, but that also serves a function.

The beautiful white walls in this house reflect the abundant natural light and make this a very happy spot to enter the house and welcome guests.  But, the bright color on the door and bench really adds personality without adding visual clutter. I love entryways that give you a taste of what you might see in the rest of the house. Try a similar approach if you are looking for an entry that is both simple, but shows off your personality.

The pair of pendant lights overhead serve several purposes.  1. They of course light the entry beautifully in the evening hours, and 2. They lead the eye into and out of the home (depending on where you’re standing) in a very subtle way.  You can see they are also aligned with the light on the outside of the front door.  Look for ways to guide the eye into your home(flooring, artwork, lighting), which will help your guests feel a sense of order and calm when they enter.

My favorite thing about the entry is the lack of little things.  It’s easy in an entryway to include bowls for keys and baskets for umbrellas and table lamps for lighting, but those things all add up and can be overwhelming, especially if your entryway is small.  Instead, try using larger scale furniture that fills the entire space, leaving no room for smaller filler items.  The mirror that fills the entire wall and the bench underneath which runs the length of the entry are both good example in this entryway.

Just like a kitchen or bathroom an entryway experiences daily heavy use.  I love the dark tile floor in the entry.  It looks like it can stand up to anything kids or animals or mother nature might throw at it, and look good doing it.   Look for materials that camouflage dirt so you don’t have to clean as often, are easy to clean when you’re ready, and will look as good in 10 years as they do on day 10.

My own entryway is about a tenth the size of the Room of the Week, but I feel like there is still a lot I can learn from it and apply to my own space.  I can’t wait to share more over the next few days.  It’s good to be back blogging!

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