Beautiful Design Ideas for the Entryway

by Lesley Harris Colvett

Entertaining season is upon is, and from Halloween to New Year’s your entryway will be the first impression of your home. 4Memphis turned to our design experts for creating a well-appointed entryway.

Allyson James

Allyson James Designs
3566 Walnut Grove Rd.
Memphis, TN 38111
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We all know the importance of first impressions. The entry hall is the first interior room of a home and the perfect canvas to create a cozy, clever and unique atmosphere where grandeur and modesty live side by side. The vital combination of practicality and personality is why some homeowners put as much thought into their entryways as they put into the other rooms.
When weighing different entry design ideas, I always start with one inspirational piece, whether it is a wallcovering, painted finish, a collected piece of furniture, accessory or art. Once inspired, I like to consider how each of these individual elements will be sympathetic to each other:

If your tendency is to go bold, consider a colorful concrete tile like “Dandelion” in marine and bone by Marrakech Design, or a parquet floor with a bold, historical pattern. Area rugs not only provide color, but a buffer from bringing outside elements into the interior spaces of your home. Try an indoor/outdoor rug that resembles sisal for a more natural look that wears well.

Wallcovering and Paint
This is the one place that I like to go bold. Consider a handscreened wallcovering like Kelly Wearstler’s “Crescent” paper in teal and cream, or a faux bois painted finish that looks like you have paneled your walls in an exotic wood. For the paint lover, I like a high gloss enamel finish by Fine Paints of Europe.

Select an entry table or chest that is both functional and a conversation piece. An antique venetian hand painted chest adorned with modern accessories or a modern piece with an antique blue and white  porcelain is always an interesting approach to balancing a variety of styles. Remember, this is most likely to be a catchall place, so a tray of some sort for keys or mail should be considered. A mirror for your guests to make any necessary last-minute adjustments to their appearance is a nice consideration, but it also provides reflective, natural light from surrounding windows allowing light to bounce around, making the space feel larger.

Lighting & Art
Convert a piece of pottery into a lamp adding a custom-patterned shade for color for your entry chest. I like a small bell jar for lighting for a small entry with low ceilings. If your walls are bold, select something simple like framed charcoal sketches on white paper or collect a piece of fine art. David Lusk Gallery, Linda Ross, Jay Etkin, Robinson Gallery and Crosstown Arts all represent a wide range of incredibly talented artists, if you are interested in collecting. The entry is the one place that sets the mood of what is to follow, be it quirky and colorful or calm and simple. It is the introduction of the space to come, so give your guests a reason to knock on your door.

Cindy McCord

Cindy McCord Design
1289 S. DuBray Place
Collierville, TN 38107
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It is often said that a person’s eyes are the window to the soul and a foyer is just that - the “window” to a person’s home. It’s where we first receive our guests, so it’s important that it says “welcome.” After all, we never get a second chance to make a good first impression. Whether you are designing a new foyer, remodeling an old one, or simply enjoying the one you have, there are always things to consider when decorating this space.
First and foremost it must speak welcome and warmth to your guests. You can achieve this with architectural features, color, furnishings, lighting and fresh flowers. Bring color in with a focal point of a piece(s) of art, a large scaled wall covering, or interesting area rug!
Use a beautiful upholstered bench or console table with decorative pieces. Lighting is so important! My motto is you can never have too many lamps or sconces in a room! Soft lighting in a room (no matter what room) is the key to warmth and an inviting atmosphere. And finally, fresh seasonal flowers always say “welcome” and help with color as well!

Anthony Shaw

Anthony Shaw
A. Shaw Style
2485 Parkway Place
Memphis, TN. 38112
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The foyer sets precedence for the rest of the home, and as a designer I look at the overall scope of the house then decide the tone of the entryway. This space can have so many personalities- dramatic, subtle, relaxed. A good designer can reflect all while expressing the client’s from the foyer leading into the rest of the home.
This space should be treated like any other room. I would look at flooring options, lighting, trim details, furniture, art, and paint or wallpaper. All of these elements are pieces that complete any space and are key to infusing it with character.
The holidays are upon us and the foyer truly is where homeowners will meet and greet friends of old and new. I, as a designer, want to pick more classic objects and paper but with an edge versus trends that quickly become dated.
Size matters! One needs to look at scale and determine if it is a smaller and intimate space that would allow for a console and artwork, or is it a large greeting hall where a center table and sculpture is possible? Bringing in mirrors is a great way to reflect light and add dimensions. Paint and paper can create a bolder effect- and those possibilities are endless.

An entryway may be the first room a visitor sees, but it can truly encompass the personality of the home.

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