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Furniture & Interior Design Blog

Creating an Inviting Entrance Way

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Home Entrance 

The nice spring weather means many of us are out and about, busy cleaning and tidying up our lawns, properties, and walkways to encourage some springtime excitement.

One of the first things we see when approaching our homes is the entrance-way. From aspects of curb appeal, resale, and inviting aesthetics, the entrance-way is the beacon that guides people into your abode. Ensuring that it’s kept prim and up-to-date is an excellent way to revitalise your home and make it feel fresh, not only welcoming you back every day but also wowing your guests as they come onto your property.

We’ve compiled some tips, tricks, ideas and theories that can help you boost your space and create an inviting entrance way.


Lead People In

Arguably one of the more obvious things to think about when creating an inviting entrance-way but you’d be surprised how many front doors are tough to locate because the flow of the entrance doesn’t lead people towards it. This can be caused by clutter, a mess of lawn ornaments, a visually busy home, overgrown vegetation, and dominated use of a side/back door as the main entrance-way.

To clear up your entrance-way and create a clear, appealing path to the door, remember to accentuate the architecture of your home; this can mean creating a pseudo hallway, eliminating alternate paths with planter boxes and hedges , or by providing illumination by way of a clearly lit pathway for evening use. Consider adding some pronounced railings to your entrance-way staircase to act as a guest-funnel. This can even be done by emphasising the material contrast of your steps and/or walkways with that of greenery, or rock gardens.

When entrance-ways are obvious, they guide your guests towards the home, translating into an inviting space that welcomes and beckons them to ‘come on in.’


Create a Transition Space

There’s nothing worse than encountering a completely neglected front entrance-way that’s free of everything. Cleaning and tidying can mean that we purge just about everything we own - rather, concentrate on placing the right things - and the right amounts of these accessories - in the right spaces to inspire a well thought out, flowing space. Using too much can confuse and overwhelm people - too little can seem cold and unwelcoming.

Creating a soft transition space within your entrance-way helps to welcome your guests by guiding them through the space and preparing them for what to expect inside. When you leave an entrance-way baron, the abrupt visual stimulation that’s found when you enter the home can seem overwhelming, no matter how tidy and organised.

Consider placing a few planters and flowerpots on the entrance-way to border the door, and even add a few patio chairs or a chic bistro set up to inspire your guests to use the space during their stay. Even consider hanging a piece of art outside to help humanise your entrance. The visual signifier of objects that denote people live in your home is a wonderful way to transition them to your home through the entrance.


Lighting

Outdoor lighting is a great way to bring warmth and a vibe of welcoming hospitality to the entrance-way of your home. Whether this means installing an entrance light beside the door or utilising LED solar lights to outline and guide people up a walkway, lighting is a powerfully inviting force that can dramatically change the energy of a home, as it can be bold or subtle, minimalist or brash.

Remember, the eco-efficient bright white lights that save homeowners money on electricity bills aren’t the type of light you usually picture when you think of a warm, hospitable location. They seem cold and utilitarian. By contrast, traditional lighting that gives off a yellow or gold hue is better for welcoming people in. If you do opt for the high-efficacy fixtures, use a 2700K temperature to achieve a warmer light.


Stash the Outdoors

Once you step inside, the entrance-way should continue. In order to acclimatise and take a moment to debrief and assess your surroundings, guests need a place to shed the outdoor gear, take off their shoes, organise their thoughts and stash their belongings.

Traditional mudrooms or foyers are good at accommodating these requirements, but more and more interior designers are opting to provide a mudroom environment that integrates with the home, further accentuating the idea of transition space, rather than isolating the mudroom altogether. In this space, you should find coat hooks, benches, a space to tuck your shoes and boots away, as well as a functional space to dry wet mittens, shoes or clothing. A nice warm area rug helps to humanize this space and add some colour.

To make this space feel warm and inviting, throw up some framed photos of the family and friends, include a big piece of abstract wall art, and paint the walls in a nice violet or blue tone to inspire some thoughts of tranquillity and calm.


Big, Bold Colour

For years, and years there seemed to be only two ways to keep your front door; one was to purchase a show-stopping front door to act as a showpiece of sorts, either in wood or featuring a glass insert. This option was usually left to broadcast its wooden roots. Another was to adopt the ancient art of Feng Shui, wherein the direction your front door faced was to be painted a specific colour, based on position and to invite wealth and happiness into the home. Perhaps most common was the belief that a bright red door meant prosperity and wealth - in horse and buggy age Western culture, a red door has been associated with hospitality by weary travellers seeking shelter.

No more. The art of Feng Shui is still relevant in many circles, but door painting these days is all about creativity and having fun. Paint your front door in a bold bright colour to act as a conversation starter when guests come over. Use colour theory to help you accentuate the overall hue of your home, and ensure that a colour ‘pop’ is going to be guaranteed. For brick homes, a rich and natural forest green may be a desirable choice. For darker homes, a light and fresh teal or violet may be a great fit.


Spice Up the Address Numbers

A wonderful way to inexpensively boost the postmodern and creative appeal of your front entrance-way is to re-imagine the way you present your address to the world. Perhaps this means simply moving your address numbers elsewhere so they’re visible from the street, or maybe it’s time to rethink the style you’ve had for years. Ensure that your placement works with your existing lighting situation so everyone from the evening guests to the pizza delivery guy can find your home from the street.

Houzz puts it in perspective well: “a house that's difficult to find never seems as welcoming as one with an address that's visible.” Consider the style of your home before purchasing the first new numbers that jump out at you. For example, a home with a Spanish influence may look sleek with a tiled hacienda type address numbers. A postmodern white home would pop exceptionally well with big, bold, black numbers - simple, and eye-catching. 

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