Decorating Dilemma: Lisa’s Entryway

Lisa's entryway design dilemma

Decorating Dilemmas is a weekly column in which our stylists answer your design questions, so you can tackle your home decorating project with complete confidence.

Hi How to Decorate,

We moved into our new home almost a year ago. I have finished almost every room in the entire house, except the most important one, the entryway! I am budget conscious and was trying to make use of some things I already had like the table, ottomans (from Ballard!) and lamp from our previous home. I have had a difficult time with this space because I know it has to be welcoming and have some continuity to the adjacent room, which happens to be my dining room. Yet, I still want it to have wow factor when guests walk in the door.

My thoughts/questions —
*need to find new rug for front door and possibly another rug/runner to put down the stretch of hardwood that leads to the main living area
*something for the walls while trying to respect my husband’s wishes of not putting décor up the stair wall/trim
*do I need a seat or stool for the blank spaces besides the door on each side?
* what to do with a blank wall that is semi-across the foyer table and a closet

I would be thrilled to finish this project before our year move-in date passes and would be grateful for your expert advice!
Thank you!

Entryway at door

Front Stairway

Facing Dining Table

Dear Lisa,

We love the neutral crisp tones throughout your entry and think you are headed in a good direction!

Let’s start with the wall behind your front door. Having a landing spot near an exterior entrance helps keep your departures and arrivals organized. The Antoinette bench would be just the right piece for your entryway; we would love it with a Farmhouse Cushion either in our Suzanne Kasler Signature Linen in Camel or our Suzanne Kasler Signature Linen in Parchment. The Aubrey mirror hanging above the bench would allow for a quick glance to check your hair and, as a bonus, it reflects natural light into the area.

Repeat the green in your Ballard ottoman by tucking our Allure Rug which has hints of green in the center of all the activity. You can freshen up your entryway seasonally by changing the throw pillows on the bench.  This is a great way to celebrate special occasions or give your space a new look!

Moving into your hallway, we would like a crisp photo collage on this wall to pick up some of the white from your plates in your dining room.  We like the group of the following pieces: Monogram art in an “S” as the central point, Entomology plaques in the bronze for contrast, Bellesol mirror will add some interest with the beveled edges, and a few of our Beaded frames in both the white and black finishes in both the 5”x7” and the 8”x10” frame. This space should feel crisp and personal.

Lisa's entryway design dilemma

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How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.


  1. Reply


    March 27, 2014

    Would love to see a before and after picture of the decorating dilemma and how it was solved using the suggested pieces.

    • Reply

      How to Decorate Team

      March 28, 2014

      Hi Maggie,

      Yes, we encourage all of our decorating dilemma submissions to send us after pictures! It’s always great to see that transformation!

      Thanks for your comment,
      The How to Decorate Team