Now that we’ve explored some sources of inspiration to find your entryway style, let’s dive right into how to make it functional and infuse it with meaning.
Go to part one.
Essential Elements for a Successful Entryway
Depending on how much space you have at your disposal, here are some basics that will help you get organised and introduce style to the space.
- Mirror. Full length, round, second hand… the choice is yours!
- A bench that will serve as a surface for your guests’ belongings or to sit down and put your shoes on comfortably. You can accessorise with a nice cushion for a ‘fuller feel.’ If you have the space, go for a nice chair or two!
- A console with drawers or space for baskets where you can store gloves, beanies, sunglasses, small change, sunscreen, etc. The console provides a surface for mail, papers and mobile phones as well. If you have a large room, go for a statement round table in the middle and decorate it with fresh flowers or stems!
- Lighting. If you’re lucky enough to have power sockets and space for a table lamp, go for it. Light that comes through a shade at eye level is a lot friendlier than that which comes from strong ceiling spots.
- A sturdy runner. These days we are lucky to have a huge selection of area rugs designed for outdoor purposes, these are the ones I would recommend for the entryway because they are easy to clean and relatively inexpensive. A word of warning: before you invest in your runner, make sure its height won’t interfere with opening the door: some doors in Switzerland, especially those in apartment blocks, can be extremely low to the ground.
- Shoe storage. This can be hidden in built-in closets, shoe units or exposed in nice shoe trays.
- Hooks. Even if you have a spot for your jackets and coats, hooks help with scarves, bags of all kinds, dry umbrellas, and hats. Take the chance to use them as a decorative item, too. They can be mounted on the wall or free-standing.
- Umbrella stand, or if you prefer smaller umbrellas, a basket or box where to store them.
- Accessories like greens, flowers, framed pictures, artwork, a sculpture, candles and the like to personalise the space.
- A designated spot for your keys. This could be in or on the console we talked about before or on the wall in a key box.
Add meaning to the space
Since this is the ‘front desk’ of your home, it’s a great place to show off who you are, what you like, who’s part of this family, where you’ve been, what you’re all about. The wall is a popular place to display your treasures, the entryway is a prime spot for your picture gallery.
Framed children’s artwork also gives the little ones in the family a sense of pride and belonging when they walk in the door (left). A display of art, photos and accessories on the wall plus the oriental style furniture reveal a lot about those living here (right).
If you live in Switzerland, we can assume that you travel often. The entryway provides you with the perfect opportunity to display your holiday finds: they will remind you of the good times away from home and give your guests real insight into your history. Accessories you bring from abroad are also great ice-breakers and conversation starters, and what better place to get the party started than as your visitors walk in the door!
Let’s imagine that you are preparing a trip to Mexico, these are some of the items that might fit in your suitcase and be useful in your entryway when you get back:
A small mirror; a door mat; wall hooks; different kinds of baskets to mount on the wall or use as storage for keys, mail, sunglasses, and more; decorative tiles; textiles to cover a bench; art; cushion covers…
If you would like your entryway to remind you of your travels but you don’t have actual treasures that you brought back, no stress! You can source them from online stores selling original products of the countries you visited.
DIY project: rock tray for wet footwear
Sometimes things are meaningful because they are homemade! So how about giving the entryway the gift of your time with this easy craft? Your floors and wet
shoes will thank you for it.
Here’s what you’ll need and how to make it:
1) Shelves Hyllis from Ikea (makes four 60cm rock trays);
2) Pebbles. They come in different colours and sizes, so you can decide which look works best for you.
3) Felt pads, 4-6 per tray.
Unpack your shelves and decide how many ‘trays’ you need. Usually one holds three pairs of shoes. Stick one felt pad on each corner of the shelves and if you wish, use two extra ones in the middle for reinforcement. Turn the shelves upside down so that they become ‘trays.’ If you want to add colour along the frame of the tray (as you see above), this is the time to apply some latex. Otherwise, keep the metal finish. Add pebbles until the whole bottom surface is covered. And that’s it! You can use these trays inside entryway closets or shoe storage, on existing shelves, on simply on the floor. Leave your wet footwear to dry and forget about cleaning up water or mud!
Pulling it off
Now it’s time to visualise your entryway and bring it to life. And what better way to do this than with a collage. I know it sounds like a lot of effort, but in realiy, it’s so easy! This is how you do it:
visit online stores and take screen shots of the items you like. Once you have them saved to your computer, open a Word Document and insert the photos of the items you wish to combine. You can even choose a background page colour that reflects the tone of your walls. You will end up with a result that looks like this:
You can prepare as many concepts (mood boards) as you like and play with the different pieces you’ve chosen. As you can see in my concept, I haven’t included a table lamp and that is because there are no power sockets in my particular space, so I allowed for a beautiful ceiling fixture instead. You don’t even have to include every item you consider using in the room, just the larger pieces will give you an idea of the direction you’re going in.
A further advantage to visualising your entryway in a mood board is that calculating the costs of your styling job becomes very straight forward.
So, there you have it: the first steps towards giving the entryway the attention it deserves. Let’s stop thinking about it as a purely functional part of our home and bring some beauty into it!
If you live in Switzerland, your mudroom is a very hard-working space all year round, from hosting tons of hats and bottles of sunscreen in summer, to ski jackets, wet shoes and mittens in winter… Never mind the size of the space, an improvement is always possible.
Fall in love with your home.
About our Author:
Analía Lazzari, Founder of Spaces for Life Interiors
Former Australian lawyer and qualified interior designer delivering affordable interiors in the Zurich area and beyond. An avid traveler, Analía is passionate about history, culture and meaningful homes. She lives in Richterswil with her husband and two teenage sons.
Follow Analías diary on Instagram: @spacesforlife_interiors
2, via 32 Estados E-Concept Store ;
3,4, 5, Spaces for Life Interiors;
6, via 32 Estados E-Concept Store;
8, www.KylieMInteriors.ca via pinterest.com;
14, globein.com ;
15, se.123rf.com ;
16, haciendastyle.com ;
18, via 32 Estados E-Concept Store;
19, Spaces for Like Interiors;
23, 24, Spaces for Life Interiors