Decorating Dilemmas: Rachel’s Foyer

Decorating a staircase landing with art and wall decor

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.

Dear How to Decorate,

My struggle is our entry way and staircase. When you first walk in there is a small first floor foyer space that opens to a very tall ceiling with the staircase in the middle and the more stairs up on each side (a Y shape). The landing between the two staircases has a tall open wall space that screams “empty” yet I am nervous to decorate it because I don’t what would be right with the scale.

I have thought about a gallery wall, but it would need to be huge. I’ve thought about a large painting, but one huge painting selection gives me anxiety! I’ve also thought about a tiny console with a painting at eye level and two sconces on the sides, but there is not enough room on the landing for a console.

Please help!




Dear Rachel,

We are happy to help you come up with a strategy for your grand foyer. The entryway is such an important feature in a home because it’s where you welcome family and friends. The size of your wall is significant but doesn’t need to be intimidating.

One of our favorite ways to furnish a large wall is with a beautiful mirror. Our Grand Palais Mirror in the Antique Bronze finish is substantial in size and could work well in the landing space in the center of your staircase. It would be stunning by itself, but if you still want more we’d like to suggest a simple symmetrical grouping. The Antique Aviary Giclee prints can be placed in groups of two on either side of the mirror. These prints are also going to pull the beautiful blue color of your walls.

Another great way to bring character to a foyer is with a rug. Our new Adelaide Tufted Rug is a great choice because of the color and pattern. If your space can hold a 5×8 it will serve to anchor the entrance to your home. It might also be nice to add some runner sized rugs in your hallway areas. In the downstairs hallways you could repeat the Adelaide, but in the upstairs it would be nice to change to a complementary rug. Our Light Sisal Rug bound in spa would repeat the color nicely.

You mentioned the idea of adding sconces. We love candle light in a foyer. Since we have a symmetrical theme going, we’d like you to consider adding a Valletta candle sconce on both sides of your entryway. We see several places that could work, but you might start on the entry level, placing one on the left wall and one on the right wall. Can you imagine the warm inviting glow that will greet your guests? It will be stunning! Also, consider perching small ottoman on the back walls that flank the staircase. We suggest our X-Bench upholstered in Dodie Beige for a whimsical addition.

We hope these suggestions get you excited about putting a plan into action. With the change in seasons your home will be ready for family and friends.

Happy Decorating,

The Design Team

Decorating a staircase landing with art and wall decor

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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

    Laura Hilliard

    September 29, 2016

    I would love to know where you bought or found those four beautiful pictures around the oval window. I would love to purchased them myself.