Decorating & Design

December 2, 2008

Decorating An Entryway

Q. I have a long and narrow entryway and would like to make it more inviting. Any suggestions?

— K.T., Toronto

A. You are working with a blank canvas — white walls and hardwood floors — so any improvements will be easy to incorporate.

To start, paint the walls a soft neutral colour to lessen the stark feeling of the entryway. Benjamin Moore’s Golden Straw (2152-50) is a warm, creamy tan that will make this space feel more inviting.

Take advantage of the long wall to create a gallery space in your home. Install a 2” wide gallery rail approximately 52” from the floor. For a strong, graphic statement frame four or five black and white photographs or prints in 8” by 10” plain black frames with white matting and place these along the gallery rail. The rail should be cut to accommodate the number of frames you want to display, placed 2” apart from each other with 2” of space on either end of the rail. Be sure to paint the gallery rail the same colour you choose for the walls.

To add warmth to the hallway and tie this space in to the rest of your home, purchase a 9’ long runner that picks up on a colour used in the main adjacent room. Alternately, a sisal runner with a coloured or neutral cotton border is a durable option for this heavy traffic area.

To open up the space, think about installing a full-length mirror with a wide black frame by your front door. Your entryway is too narrow for furniture, so a storage bench or armoire in the next room can be used to tuck away shoes and keep this area clutter-free.