April 17, 2016

Four Steps To An Inviting Entryway

I recently finished decorating my entryway. I saved this project for last because I wanted the space to have its own aesthetic attitude yet fit in with the rest of my interior. While four steps may seem less official than five (ever notice how projects are almost always broken down into 5, 10, or 7 steps?), I assure you I'm not leaving anything out. I've broken down this seemingly overwhelming project into just four manageable pieces, which you can work through at your own speed. Just know that I say "steps" loosely since decorating is a bit of a juggling act, but hopefully this list of sorts will make the process seem more organized. 

Also, I picked up these gorgeous ginger jar prints by Laura Row Studio from the framer just a few days ago and I'm so happy with the results...


In the seemingly paradisiacal DIY universe of Pinterest, it's hard to know which projects to attempt and which to avoid. I love, repeat love wallpaper. But after hours of research on how to install permanent wallpaper in a temporary way, my best (or least risky) solution for renters who are bored with their beige walls is to—sad pause of silence—hang lots of cool artwork, objects, mirrors, and curtains. I even began questioning the renter-friendliness of removable wallpaper after stumbling across several reports like these. But since I'm only looking to cover one wall in an L-shaped foyer nook, I'll take my chances…given I find a removable paper as preppy and bright and gorgeous as these permanent papers below (which can all be found here). 


The three basic elements of an entryway are a console, lamp(s), and one big mirror, painting, or group of paintings. I’m partial to the mirror-over-console layout for obvious reasons. Mirrors are glamorous yet practical (I always check myself in the console mirror on my way out the door), plus they increase light and make the room seem larger.

Outside of the foyer realm, lamps are usually considered accents. But inside, lamps are a crucial component of your basic layout, as they help determine how you balance the space; informally, with just one lamp and an off-center mirror (for the sake of brevity, I’m using a mirror), or formally, with two lamps and a centered mirror. Of course, there’s always the subtly informal look of a centered mirror, a lamp on one side, tall object on the other (like mine). My advice? Pick a side or flank the sides. 

One last bit of advice you may find useful in this category is to decide beforehand whether you want to go more neutral with your walls, bold and patterned with your furniture, or vice versa. 


In the neutral world of my apartment, my grandmother's Persian rug is a textile focal point that ensures visual interest. If you don't already own a vintage Persian rug, consider it a must-buy...at some point in your life. Think jagged fringe, irregular-rectangle shape, and teetering-on-threadbare condition. Finding an heirloom-quality Persian will take some some time and patience, though. Flea markets, antique malls, and Etsy seem to have the most rug bargain potential. In lieu of orientals—as difficult as that is to say—I’m smitten with these eight rugs (and the great news is, they're affordable). 


1. Navy with greek key border by Unique Loom, $63-$360 
2. Oden rug in navy by Lulu and Georgia, $62-615
3. Green trellis rug at Overstock, $131.74 (on sale)
4. Green-and-white stripe rug by Dash and Albert, $129-1,308
5. Sky blue trellis by Rugs USA, $24-603
6. Blue-and-white greek key Rugs USA, $168
7. Saphire blue greek key rug by Beth Lacefield, $20-976
8. Blue awning stripe rug by Dash and Albert, $35-452


The consensus among decorating experts is that art and accessories are no longer a mere afterthought. While I agree wholeheartedly that they should play an essential role in your design strategy, the final product should still convey a bit of spontaneity —an element or two you just “throw in” because you love it and you’re not afraid of it looking slightly out of place. My favorite accent designers this moment are Johnathan Adler, Laura Row Studio, Dana Gibson, and Katie Kime. I've been getting lots of requests lately for a post on accents (and I want to keep some mystery haha) so I hope you don't mind my lack of detail here. 

 Now is a great time to decorate or re-decorate because estate sale season is here!