The entryway is the very first thing the outside world sees when they step inside your home.
However, in the midst of decorating larger spaces like the living room, kitchen, or bedrooms, the entryway is often overlooked or under-considered.
While it is one of the smaller spaces in the home, the foyer has the potential for great impact and should be a stylish and welcoming sight for guests and homeowner alike.
Entryways are the perfect canvas for a vibrant wall color or bold wallpaper if you if you are unable to do either in a larger space. Think of the space as a great opportunity to take a decorating risk while keeping it a practical space.
Accessorize the space with entryway essentials like trays, umbrella stands, a sitting bench, or a small console table.
If your entryway has long been an afterthought, here's some inspired ideas to make the most of the dilemma behind your door.
1 The position of these hooks make the items hanging on them visually impactful. (marthastewart.com)
2 Hanging belongings on a collection of different hooks adds personality to an entryway. (apartmenttherapy.com)
3 Antlers make a whimsical hat rack, and the boot display is sophisticated yet practical. (apartmenttherapy.com)
4 Low hanging art is beautiful in this entryway. (marthastewart.com)
5 The dramatic staircase, warm lighting and oriental rug make this entryway so welcoming. (Elle Decor)
6 Use a colorful rug to greet your guests. (apartmenttherapy.com)
7 For those living in small apartments, this is a phenomenal way to create an entryway where there is none. Build a wall with shelves as pictured here, or simply put a tall bookshelf parallel to the door to create this look. (apartmenttherapy.com)
8 Beautiful tile work at the door elevates the space. (marthastewart.com)
9 The beautiful stained glass almost negates the need to add anything to this entryway. (apartmenttherapy.com)
10 Another great floor steals the show. (Elle Decor)
11 Clean and minimal. (Martha Stewart Living, February 2003)
12 These two tall planters are gorgeous accents. (Elle Decor)
13 A bold wallpaper works well in this small entryway. (apartmenttherapy.com)
14 The black and white tiles are a striking first impression. (decor8.com)
15 The vibrant back splash to this entryway area is so fun. (apartmenttherapy.com)
16 This homeowner has installed a zen pond to greet their guests with. (Elle Decor)
17 A turquoise chair gives a burst of energy to this entryway. (Jonathan Adler)
18 I love the delicate console table and sconces. (Martha Stewart Living, October 2004)
Luckily, there are multitudes of practical and pretty entryway essentials. Following are my favorites that will give guests entryway envy.
1 This console is sleek and modern without appearing harsh and cold. (mgbwhome.com)
2 A console need not be long and narrow. This charming piece really adds character to a more traditional space. (Somerset Bay Mackinaw Lowboy, Layla Grace)
3 I have this umbrella stand in my entryway and love its simplicity and sheen. (Slim Umbrella Stand, Chiasso)
4 This simple tray is a great catch-all for keys, mail, and phone. (jonathanadler.com)
5 (Martha Stewart Living Lombard Console Table, homedecorators.com)
6 The juxtaposition of the stone top with its more streamline leg is fantastic. (olystudio.com)
7 Another great example of a modern yet approachable entryway table. It's almost a piece of sculpture for your foyer. (olystudio.com)
8 (Martha Stewart Living Larsson Demilune Table, homedecorators.com)
9 I love the simple, long lines of this coat rack. (misewell.com)
10 This console is so grand and dramatic. (mercantila.com)
11 A polished hook is an easy and inexpensive way to elevate the style of your entryway. (restorationhardware.com)
12 This is a nice combination of modern lines and Gothic carving. (laylagrace.com)
13 Demilune tables are a great option if you are working with a narrow space. (ethanallen.com)
14 If you are looking for a bit of old-world charm, this is a great option. (rejuvenation.com)
15 Often foyers lack overhead lighting, bring a soft glow to the space with this simple and chic lamp. (wshome.com)
16 To keep things tidy and close at hand, corral your mail, keys, and other necessities on a tray with personality. (johnderian.com)
17 Add a sleek touch to your entry with a lamp like this one. (circalighting.com)
18 This classic mirror -- from the Martha Stewart Living line -- is at home in any space -- from contemporary to the most traditional. (homedepot.com)
19 These mirrors are so delicate and effortless. (potterybarn.com)
20 The crisp shade atop the organic, textured base makes this a welcome site when you walk in the store. (visualcomfortlightingstore.com)
21 It's hard to believe that this mirror was not unearthed at a architectural salvage yard. (restorationhardware.com)
22 Is it me or is this not the perfect mirror for a Moby Dick movie remake? (restorationhardware.com)
23 The slenderness of this table is great for those urban dwellers who must make a foyer out of a tiny space. (mgbwhome.com)
24 A classic coat rack gets an whimsical twist a fun turquoise color. (urbanoutfitters.com)
25 This is a nice updated Gustavian look for an entryway. (Martha Stewart Living Ingrid Console, homedepot.com)
26 These umbrella stands are perfect for the minimalist. (coatracksandmore.com)
27 There's no rule that utilitarian items like an umbrella stand or magazine rack have to be boring. (horchow.com)
28 (Martha Stewart Living Tahoe Mirror, homedepot.com)
29 Rustic, industrial chic for the foyer. Not to mention handy drawers for notepads, pens, and your dog's leash. (wisteria.com)
30 Add another basket like this one and you could use the pair as an in-and-out mail system. (basketville.com)
For more entryway tips and ideas, be sure to see my my column in the April 2011 issue of Martha Stewart Living.