30 entryway ideas that will ensure a stylish welcome to your home

The perfect entryway idea needs to combine style with practicality, so we asked designers for their top tips on nailing this balance

Entryway ideas
(Image credit: Chris Wakefield Photography/Kerry Kirk/Roger Davies)

First impressions matter, especially when it comes to the home. Admittedly, the entryway can often feel like an interior afterthought: A quick pit stop to unload your shoes and coat before you head inside and the real design magic begins. 

But, in reality, this underrated area is rife with design inspiration – you just need to know where to find it. Think of your entryway as the first glimpse into your home: Not only can it make a lasting impression, but it can also set the tone for your entire space’s style. 

The secret to making an entryway look good is to strike a healthy balance between form and function. Since entryways tend to be a smaller, slimmer part of the home, they must smartly utilize every square inch and promote sensible traffic flow. On the style front, you’ll want to make sure that the entryway pairs well with the rest of your home decor. To help, we scouted the best entryway ideas to give your home a warm, well-appointed welcome. Regardless of your space’s shape, size and style, you’re bound to find an idea that piques your interest.  

Entryway ideas that create the perfect welcome

 As the ideas below prove, there’s more than one way to create a striking entryway. From clever uses of color to impactful patterns, to strategically-placed furniture, the inspiration below will not only make your home’s entrance grander, but they can also be applied to a breadth of spaces.

1. Mix and match styles for a characterful entryway

Entryway with checkered board flooring and stairs painted in dark paint

(Image credit: Nick Smith)

When Clare Gaskin was tasked with creating the entryway for this family home, she was asked to bring a “monochromatic, Parisian-chic” energy all while highlighting the space’s natural light and garden.

'Walking into a home it’s wonderful to be greeted by a space that feels exciting and elegant but also to be encouraged on a journey through the home which you get by leading the eye to a view,' Gaskin explains. 'As here with the inviting connection to an exterior green space or perhaps a statement artwork.'

But just because Clare stuck with a high-contrast color palette doesn’t mean this entryway is by any means stale. The designer used this simple scheme to deftly mix a bevy of interior design styles, as seen by the traditional tiled floor and contemporary console table. 

2. Go big with color

Color drenched green entryway with wooden console

(Image credit: Kerry Kirk)

Or, if you want to make a bold statement with your entry, infuse a can’t-miss color. Here, Katie Davis employed an unapologetic, smile-inducing green. 'Bold walls and even bolder flooring give this entry a punch of glam that sets the tone for the rest of the home,' she explains. 

While the glossy look of this verdant foyer might make an already bold color even more eye-catching, Katie argues the finish is practical, too. She says: 'The allover tone in a glossy application actually gave the space more dimension, making the entry feel even larger.'

3. Try the Tonal Treatment

Pink entryway with wiggle pattern wallpaper

(Image credit: Megan Taylor)

Make no mistake, it’s possible to make an entryway pop with pastels–just ask 2LG Studio

'An entryway should be a place to make a bold statement, a warm welcome to all of your guests setting out your design ethos from the start,' says co-founder Jordan Cluroe. Though the British design firm stuck with a light pink for this foyer, they incorporated a series of fun patterns within the same color family. Highlights include a wiggle runner from Floorstory and 2LG Studio’s Tildẽ wiggle wallpaper, which was hand-painted by the firm’s co-founder Russell Whitehead to 'create a fun and playful entrance.' Mission accomplished. 

4. Craft a Can’t-Miss Ceiling

Entryway ceiling with wallpaper and cobalt blue trim

(Image credit: LaJoy Photography)

While an entryway can often be treated as a threshold from your outdoor space to your home’s common areas, this entryway from Chicago designer Joy Williams encourages you to pause and look up. 

The sun-drenched space–which Williams says acts as an entryway, a lobby, and a foyer–has a cloud-like pattern on the ceiling to offer an unexpected statement. Drawing the eye upward is an accent of bright blue. 'We love color so one tip is to not be afraid to lather it on the doors and trim. Your eye never tires of the shock of blue because it’s balanced by all of the natural light that floods in from the glass doors and black and white flooring.'

5. Style a Seating Area

Entryway seating area with yellow velvet chairs

(Image credit: R. Brad Knipstein)

If you’re going to spend a lot of time thinking (and ultimately designing) your entryway, why not create a moment to kick back, relax, and enjoy the view?  

In this open-concept space, designer Susie Novak turned the entryway into a parlor with a sweet seating area. 'The yellow chairs add a yummy invitation for a welcome cocktail or water when guests arrive,' she explains. 'Entries with drama create an immediate excitement when guests enter the house.' A charming wallpaper repeat, geometric credenza, and sunny vases round out the look into style, making this one entryway idea host-approved, too.  

6. Add an Unexpected Alcove

Sofa under the stairs with striped wallpaper

(Image credit: Thomas Kuoh)

Like the idea of seating in your entry, but don’t have a large enough footprint to accommodate a few chairs and a table? Enter Emilie Munroe of Studio Munroe, who turned the overlooked spot under a stairwell into a usable alcove. The San Francisco designer outfitted this sweet nook with a fun, plaid wallpaper, and colored glass light feature. 

'Contrary to popular belief, the more unique and small the space, the better equipped it is to carry an unexpected, bold wallpaper'” she says. 'Smaller spaces maximize a pattern's impact to create magical moments in the home.'

7. Rethink Your Wall Decor

Light entryway with green and yellow decor and bench

(Image credit: Donna Dotan)

Mirror and framed pictures might be the status quo for entryway walls. However, Ariel Okin encourages you to think outside of the box.

'When designing an entryway, it's really important to add a sense of character and warmth,' the designer explains. “Especially in a new-build residence that might not have a lot of architectural character.'

Ariel employed an “eclectic, layered look” by eschewing the predictable picture frames in favor of hanging vintage pottery and an ornate mirror. The result? 'A personal touch that immediately greets a guest as they enter the home, relaying what you're all about in the first ‘hello!’'


Colorful entryway with orange front door and striped side table

(Image credit: Richard Powers)

Create a “wow” moment well before you step inside with a bold front door idea, just like the one in this space from Oakland-based design firm Ike Baker Velten. 'The door has colored glass dinner plates for the lights,' says principal John Ike. 'The hardware is the original handmade brass and iron that was part of this reclaimed door when the house was constructed in 1947 by a naval commander using conscripted labor and stolen/found materials.'

The rainbow glass offers plenty of curb appeal–and once inside, when the light hits just right, it can offer a technicolor glow.

9. Soften an entryway with fabrics

Small entryway with striped curtains

(Image credit: Chris Wakefield Photography)

At first thought, incorporating excess textiles into an entryway can make an already small space feel cramped or claustrophobic. However, this frilly foyer from Sean Symington

proves otherwise. The window treatment idea, fringed curtain, and skirting on the console table lend a cozy, comforting feel to this light-washed area. 

Meanwhile, thoughtful accessories add an extra dose of charm. 'We always try to incorporate a console table and artwork into every hallway that we design,' he adds. 'This one is particularly narrow, so it was important that we furnish it in order to create the illusion of more space.' Talk about a warm welcome! 

10. Create contrasts

Dark blue entryway with wooden console

(Image credit: Roger Davies)

If you’re looking to make a high-octane entryway, opposites attract. Black and white might be the go-to colors to contrast, but this space from Oliver Furth is your cue to swap out the basic neutrals for a pigmented alternative.

'Paint becomes virtual architecture in this Los Angeles entry,' says Furth, who recently released his first monograph, OP! Optimistic Interiors . 'A persimmon ceiling advances, bringing welcoming warmth and intimacy, while contrasting with cool teal walls.' (Plus, the red ceiling creates the illusion of tall ceilings.) Meanwhile, a mix of vintage and contemporary furniture in rattan, cast resin, and spun aluminum brings texture and interest. 

11. Choose wallpaper that makes an impact

Entryway in black and white

(Image credit: Rikki Snyder / Kathleen Walsh)

Entryway wall decor can bring character to the area, and set the tone for the rest of your home. Patterned wallpaper will draw the eye, as it does in this design by Kathleen Walsh, principal of Kathleen Walsh Interiors. But a bold paint color for the walls or painted paneling could be equally impactful.

If the entryway’s small or you have younger kids, think practically with finishes that won’t show scuffs and marks.

12. Store around the door

hallway/entryway with wooden built in storage, white flooring, rug, pendant light, white walls

(Image credit: Roundhouse)

Avoid clutter in an entryway by fitting custom storage that becomes a hidden drop zone. This design uses the area above a door as well as the space on either side to maximize the space to stash. Storage instantly elevates any entryway, allowing you to reduce clutter and focus on what looks good in an entryway instead.

Custom designs can follow the lines of an entryway that isn’t conventionally shaped like this one to provide storage from floor to ceiling, making them well worth the investment. Follow the lead of this design with an oak veneer to bring appealing texture and warmth to the entryway.

3. Add an entryway bench

13. Add an entryway bench

hallway with wooden floor and blue and white stripe rug gold mirror and oar artwork

(Image credit: Amy Leferink Interior Impressions)

A bench is not only an elegant addition to an entryway, but also a practical feature, allowing shoes to be taken off when coming in and put on when going out with no awkward balancing act necessary. 

A design raised on legs keeps the floor on show so the area feels as large as possible, but in a small entryway, it can be preferable to opt for a bench with space inside for shoes and other hallway storage essentials.

14. Consider the view

Entryway furniture with slim console table

(Image credit: Future)

A mirror can be a stylish feature as part of modern entryway ideas or more classic designs. It’s also a functional one, allowing those going out to check their appearance. This version picks up the curves of the nook in which it’s hung, and draws attention to the height of the space, too.

Always think view when you hang a mirror – whether in an entryway or elsewhere. What’s reflected should be pleasing to the eye. Think about placement, too. In entryway Feng Shui, the mirror should not directly align with the front door. 

15. Create a point of focus

Entryway with grey walls, console and artwork

(Image credit: Jon Day)

A standout, eye-catching design – and statement color palette – in an entryway not only tells a story, it also draws our attention and sparks wonder. 

In this modern hallway, graphic prints hung side by side over a bespoke metal console create a striking impact. Shapely accessories in glass and marble further enhance the ensemble.

‘I love using this sort of color on walls as it allows paintings and portraits to really sing out,' says Anna Haines, founder, Anna Haines Design. 'It feels both calming and quiet and also works as the ideal backdrop for a range of rich textiles, decorative antique rugs and furniture.’

16. Add a statement addition to an entryway

Entryway with bold artwork, table lamp, console and stone floor

(Image credit: Alexander James)

'I always advise using really interesting furniture in hallway ideas – a beautiful console table or a sculptural piece,' says Charu Gandhi, founder of Elicyon. 'It's unexpected and because it's not a space you're going to sit in for ages, you don't have to focus on functionality or, indeed, comfort, so you can get away with doing something that's quite frivolous.' Here, striking artwork and bold accessories set the scene in this bright entryway.

17. Make furniture the focal point

A hallway wallpaper idea with landscape mural with pink sky and round entrance table

(Image credit: Polly Wreford)

Entryways have a structure to them and you can add a very heavy, monolithic piece of furniture that's going to stay there. 

'While you wouldn't necessarily want to have a very chunky, oversized marble table in the living room as you wouldn't be able to move it around, it can stay in place in the hall,' says Charu. 

18. Allow space for easy movement

Entryway with stone slab floor and black woodwork

(Image credit: Alexander James / Charu Gandhi)

Make sure you don't select furniture that blocks the flow of the space from front porch ideas to entryway to hall. You really want to look at the entire journey and make sure that the flow and movement is protected.

Instead, for interest, invest in clever entryway lighting ideas. Getting your hallway lighting right is possibly the single most important decision you will make when decorating this space. It isn’t simply a matter of function. Ceiling lights can be objects of beauty and the right choice can transform the character of your scheme. 

19. Add Warmth Underfoot

A hallway carpet idea with yellow walls, woven natural carpet and rattan baskets on the entry table

(Image credit: Tom Leighton)

The main advantage of hallway carpet is the incredible range of decorating possibilities that it offers, thanks to the wide variety of colors and textures, as well as the feeling of warmth underfoot. Plus, it is an instant win for anyone hoping to add a seductive softness to their home’s entrance, or keep a house’s corridors insulated during the winter. 

Natural floorings made from plant fiber are a versatile option for a high-traffic entryway. It can be fitted in the same way as carpet, used as a room square or as a rug or runner with a bound or decorative fabric or leather edge. 

‘For comfort and longevity, a firm underlay is usually used and the flooring is stuck to that,’ says Michael Turner of Crucial Trading.

20. Factor in entryway storage

Hallway ideas

(Image credit: Future / Richard Powers)

When in search of extra hallway storage space in an entryway, make the most of the ceiling heights available. Built-in joinery or off-the-shelf solutions can provide the perfect amount of extra room to house items only used for special occasions or rarely read books. To break up a large wall of storage, use a mix of closed and open solutions. 

Do you have a narrow or small hallway? A clever trick to avoid overcrowding in an entryway that eventually leads to the space becoming a messy drop zone is to use a mix of closed and open storage – too many bulky units can make a room appear too practical – and detract away from its beauty. Include stylish entry table decor ideas to counteract this.

21. Keep the color palette neutral

Entryway ideas with round table

(Image credit: Mark Bolton)

It’s a common decorating dilemma, achieving a balance in our entryways between what is beautiful and what is functional, so take a 'less is more' approach when it comes to designing a hallway or staircase.

One important aspect to consider, when decorating with a neutral color in an entryway is to bring in as much texture as possible as it creates interest and layers –important factors when strong colors are out of the picture. After all, this is the first room your visitors will see upon entry.

Invest in unfussy prints on fabrics for seat covers and blinds. Simple organic shape designs – rather than an off the moment pattern – will last the test of time. What's more, choose shades of taupe and mix in chocolate browns, greys and touches of black for a sophisticated take on a natural palette. 

22. Evoke a whimsical world upon entrance


(Image credit: Jake Curtis)

There is something undeniably magical about chinoiserie, especially in an entryway. This cultural phenomenon first swept across Europe and America in the 17th and 18th centuries, flooding both interiors and gardens with all manner of things inspired by the Far East. It was in England that chinoiserie can be said to have been most successfully absorbed into mainstream fashion – and into our homes. 

According to Dragons & Pagodas: A Celebration of Chinoiserie by Aldous Bertram: 'English chinoiserie took a gentler form, being adapted to complement the existing tastes of the Georgian period. Chinese wallpapers with exotic birds and flowers were put up in all the great houses, accompanied by elegant lacquer chests and small collections of Chinese porcelain over fireplaces.'

23. Paint your entryway in a shade of gray

Entryway with grey painted walls

(Image credit: VSP Interiors / Paul Massey)

A gray that straddles the boundaries between blue, green and gray can be many things: front and center or a background to show off art and objects. 

In the back entryway of this project by Henriette von Stockhausen of VSP Interiors, the deep mid-grey background is broken up with a rich damask upholstery fabric and elegant antiques. Easy to live with, this hallway paint idea looks beautiful in west- or south-facing rooms while being suitably moody in spaces with less light.

24. Enchant with a scenic mural in an entryway

Entryway ideas with wall mural

(Image credit: Simon Bevan / Future)

Scenic landscape murals are the biggest story in decorating today – wonderfully atmospheric and evocative, an impressive hallway wallpaper or wall mural idea will transform any entryway, hall or landing space.

Dramatic and stylized, this glorious scenic design is reminiscent of a beautifully illustrated storybook. Translate the jewel tones into upholstery and accessories and add in glass, wood and metal pieces.

25. Take a bold approach to an entrance

Entryway ideas with green walls and floor tiles

(Image credit: Sarah Southwell)

In the modern and colorful entryway of her home, interior designer Sarah Southwell had a vibrant green made by Paint & Paper Library to contrast with the red stair runner by Roger Oates Design. ‘It’s the bravest choice I’ve ever gone with but the color combinations work perfectly together,’ she says.

26. Dress you walls with art

Entryway painted peach and decorated with modern art

(Image credit: David Parmiter)

An entryway should be decorated with as much care as other rooms and this means considering entryway wall decor and art. Interior designer Louisa Greville Williams’ entryway is painted in Setting Plaster by Farrow & Ball. ‘It’s a good backdrop for my art, which is a mix of modern and older paintings.

27. Mix the old with the new

Entryway with blue wallpaper and red console

(Image credit: Sarah Vanrenen)

Interior designer Sarah Vanrenen is known for using strong-colored pieces of entryway furniture alongside more traditional florals and geometric patterns. ‘We designed the Augustus table for this entryway to really stand out and reinstated the cornice and architraves,’ she says.

'An entryway is a space you walk through so you can afford to use bold patterns on the walls and it's an important place to make an impact as you walk into the house.'

28. Create a room

White entryway ideas for apartments with wood furniture and floor

(Image credit: Alexander James)

Where the entryway layout is more generous in size, make the most of it by introducing good-looking furniture and elegant fittings that result in somewhere that people might want to sit and linger. This was the approach that decorator Christian Bense took for this entryway idea for apartments.

29. Choose colors that work well with adjoining rooms

Entryway with floral wallpaper and classic furniture

(Image credit: Lucy Marsh)

Interior designer Lucy Marsh chose Lewis & Wood’s Adam’s Eden wallpaper in ivory for this country house, which sets off the antique furniture. ‘I always choose an impactful design for an entrance hall and this paper brings real character,’ she explains.

'When working with bold patterns ensure the scale is in keeping with the ceiling height and size of the entryway and choose colors which work with the adjoining rooms,' says interior designer, Lucy Marsh.

30. Play with pattern

Modern entryway with white walls and pattern floor

(Image credit: Alexander James)

Add strong patterns to make an entryway look bigger. ‘Creating beautiful interior architecture is about striking the right balance of elements: if a room has a mass of original features, we’ll tend to add less to it,’ explains Tom Cox of HÁM Interiors.


What should I put in my entryway?

'You do need to consider the practical elements, then design around them so you don't detract from the beauty,' says interior designer Charu Gandhi. 'Things like where coats, shoes, and keys are going to go. If there's space, I think doing a seat or a bench that incorporates hallway shoe storage is great. We nearly always add a tray so you can lay your things out ready to go.'

'I also love putting mirrors in entryways because they can tend to feel quite dark, she says. 'Similarly, do try and add a floor or table lamp, especially when you are entertaining.' 

How do I make my foyer brighter?

To make a foyer brighter, first think decor. Pale paint colors are a go-to to reflect the light but you might alternatively choose a wallpaper with a pale ground. If paint is your preference, glossier finishes are more reflective and are a practical choice for a busy area.

Consider the lighting, too. Lamps should supplement ceiling lighting and if there isn’t space for a surface on which to set a table lamp, think about installing wall lighting.

Make sure the entryway is clear of clutter, too. If it’s crowded with outerwear, achieving a bright and airy feel is out of the question. Plan in storage, and limit what’s kept there to daily essentials.

Entryway ideas are perhaps the most important to get right out of all the rooms in your home. It might not be a room you spend long periods of time in, but it is the space you, and your guests, see the most. It's a welcome to your home, setting the scene and teasing what is to come, so spend time considering the colors, patterns, and decor. 

Jennifer Ebert

Jennifer is the Digital Editor at Homes & Gardens. Having worked in the interiors industry for a number of years, spanning many publications, she now hones her digital prowess on the 'best interiors website' in the world. Multi-skilled, Jennifer has worked in PR and marketing, and the occasional dabble in the social media, commercial and e-commerce space. Over the years, she has written about every area of the home, from compiling design houses from some of the best interior designers in the world to sourcing celebrity homes, reviewing appliances and even the odd news story or two.

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