interiors & styling: Form vs Function : Entryway Edition

Hey guys, how are you hanging in there? I’m ready to kick off the week with a positive attitude! I’m back with another post on form versus function, since the bathroom storage edition was such a big hit last time. Our current entryway is a work in progress and we haven’t started renovating that area yet, but I have been brainstorming ideas and it made me think about how important it is to have an organized entryway. I thought it would be fun to continue this series with an area of the house people commonly struggle with from an organizational standpoint. It’s a space that can easily become cluttered and unorganized, which isn’t ideal- given it’s the first thing you see upon entering your home. From taking off your shoes, dropping keys & mail, to packages piling up- I’m sharing my tips for keeping things in order and looking nice. Rather than letting this space turn into a “catchall” for all kinds of stuff, I’m spilling my ideas for organization no matter the size of your entryway. Click through for the post!


#1: Ground the Space with A Piece of Furniture

Think a bench, a table, or a piece of furniture that helps to “ground” the space while also being functional. This is the foundation of your entryway vignette. In our first home, the mudroom was the perfect place for a bench and hooks to hang dog leashes. However, if you don’t have that kind of designated space in your home (we haven’t since our first house), the entrance space in front of your door is also a great option… you just have to work on a smaller scale. In our current home, that is the negative space in front of our staircase, pictured below. I selected this marble pedestal table as my starting point.

You can add lamps, a tray for keys & mail, and artwork as you go, but start with your big piece of furniture first. A console table in your entryway is a great solution for hiding (and displaying) those everyday items you need. I’ll link some of my current favorites below…

#2: Find Functionality

Once you have your larger grounding piece, finding smaller trays and vessels is a great next step. I like to use a combination of things that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. Think trays to corral your keys, spare change, and pieces of mail. Boxes or lidded vessels are awesome for closed storage. Sometimes we’ll stash things like chargers, coupons, or gift cards out of sight. It’s totally personal preference what you decide to hide in closed storage versus what you prefer to keep out for convenience and easy access.

You’ll also always find greenery or flowers of some sort in my entryway, just because they make me smile… along with a candle!

#3: Mix It Up

I think the name of the game is experimenting with different items until you get it right. What combination best functions for your family and looks great in your dedicated entry space? No two solutions will be the same! Maybe you need multiple cubbies and baskets to store shoes and backpacks, or perhaps a couple baskets tucked under a console table are sufficient storage for your family. Maybe hooks totally work for your small space? Think about how you want the space to function and design it around your life, so it works well for you.

It’s always great to know your keys, jacket, and umbrella are always in the same spot, so you aren’t running around trying to find things.

#4: Swap Things Out Seasonally

As the seasons change, I find myself needing (and wanting) to restyle areas throughout my home accordingly. During the winter months, I utilize a boot tray (we get a ton of snow here) and I leave my favorite snow boots out for easy access, so I’m ready to take the dogs out into the snowy yard, but in the spring, summer, and fall- my boot tray is tucked away in our garage. I swap things out seasonally based on functionality and my aesthetic preference.

Here’s a list of what I keep out versus what I hide behind closed storage… but most of this just depends on how much space you have to play with and how it’s organized. My solution will probably look different than yours, and that’s ok!

  • shoes // YES & NO (I keep snow boots out in the winter, but nothing else… mainly because I don’t want a puddle in my closet)
  • coat // YES (only during the cold months… we use a coat rack & hooks)
  • umbrella // YES
  • keys // YES (but I keep them corralled in my vintage hand “tray”)
  • bags // YES & NO (I have a bag hook, but I mostly keep them in my closet)
  • mail // YES & NO
  • dog leashes // YES (but we typically keep those on a hook in the laundry room)
  • candle // YES (I burn a lot of candles)
  • chargers // NO (those live in closed storage)
  • a box cutter & envelope opener // NO (in closed storage, but comes in handy for packages & mail)

Does your home have a mudroom or designated entry area or did you style a vignette near your front door, if not? What items do you prefer to leave out versus keep in closed storage? I’d love to hear in the comments! After ordering this chandelier for our staircase / entryway, I’ve been dreaming of tiling the entry, reworking the staircase, and adding even more function… although I’m pretty sure none of that will be happening anytime soon. Regardless, it’s fun to brainstorm! I hope we all have a better week. This is your friendly reminder to STAY HOME if you can (if you missed my COVID-19 thoughts, read this post).


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