In this Ask A Designer column, Stacy Begg shares her tips for making a grand entrance.
Question: I’m looking to update my small entryway. We live in a raised bungalow, and as soon as you come in the front door, you see stairs going up to the living area and stairs going down to the basement. What would you recommend for making a better first impression? — L.T., Whitby, Ontario
Do you have a design dilemma? Send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Answer: You have a good space to work with — it just needs some layers to add texture and interest. The bare walls would benefit from the addition of flat panelling, as shown in this Inspiration shot (above). This is just MDF panelling. I suggest you stop at plate rail height, which is about six to eight feet from the floor, but you’ll be able to judge best in your foyer. Paint the walls white in Benjamin Moore’s Cloud White or Decorator’s White to brighten up the space.
Photographer: Kate Osborne
Designer: Studio McGee
Now add some furniture: a freestanding wardrobe on the right side as you walk in.
Source: Stoney Creek Furniture
Coastal Wardrobe with Adjustable Shelves by Hooker Furniture, $5,489,
A console with open shelving will show off practical and pretty storage baskets.
Source: Cocoon Furnishings
Console by Jeffrey Alan Marks, $3,385,
Add a large mirror for final touch-ups before you head out the door.
Eliott Mirror, $109,
Use the table as a styling opportunity. Add a decorative lamp for ambient light at night.
Alexa Hampton Penelope 30" Table Lamp by Visual Comfort, $1,174,
Use a tray for mail and keys.
Source: Shop House & Home
Products: Fossil Organic Mini Glass Tray by Hopson Grace, $115, through Shop House & Home
Finish the vignette off with silk peonies, lamb’s ear and artificial succulents grouped in a textured ceramic vase.
Lot450shop White Silk Flower Centerpiece, $86,
If budget allows, a new ceiling fixture would also be a great upgrade.
Source: Union Lighting and Furnishings
Launceton Ring Chandelier, $3,199,
Lastly, bring in some color with a rug in a fresh, welcoming pattern. Good luck!
Source: Signature by Shelley Alexanian
Products: Dalia Rug, $4,200, at Signature by Shelley Alexanian