Ever wonder, when designing a room, what pieces are essential, and which things are simply nice to have if you have the space or budget for them? Well, no more wondering! With our interior design buying guides, we’ll walk you through the essential pieces for a space, the nice-to-haves, and the little touches that make a space shine.
Our Modsy designers have worked with many homeowners to furnish their entryways, so we know from experience what is the entryway furniture you absolutely need and the things you can hold off on—or just do without altogether.
Given the above, we obviously have amassed a ton of useful entryway design tips. But to help simplify what to bring into your own space, we’ve created this entryway buying guide to walk you through the essential pieces to get (mirror, rug, table lamp) and the big-ticket investment pieces you should save and splurge on at some point (credenza, console). Treat this as your entryway checklist for everything you need to design a space that’s welcoming, stylish, and functional. After all, the idea is for you to have an entryway that meets all your everyday needs and works for your lifestyle. And because everyone’s budget is different, we’ve included a general price range for each of the pieces you’ll want to consider for your space.
Early Entryway Considerations
The size and shape of your entryway
If you can, measure out your entryway so you know how much space you have to work with. This will give you an idea of the number of furniture pieces you can realistically fit in your space. This is also important because if you have a narrow entryway or a hallway entryway, you’ll want to avoid deep, bulky pieces.
How you use your entryway on a daily basis
A family entryway is used very differently than a space for someone who’s living by themselves. If you have children, you might need more storage while if you live solo, you might opt for a slim console instead of a credenza. Being clear about how the space needs to function for you will help narrow down your furniture choices.
Entryway Essentials: Furniture and Decor Checklist
With all that in mind, let’s dive in on our entryway checklist!
Whether it’s a round, rectangular, or square mirror, it’s a functional piece that will open up your space, reflect more light into your entryway, and also let you get one last look at yourself before you run out the door. Hang any large mirror over a console table or credenza for a balanced look. Be sure it’s at the right height (eye level) so you can easily see yourself without stooping or going on tippy toes!
Stylist Tip: If you have a small space, mirrors are great for bouncing light around, and a large one can help make a cramped room or pass-through space feel more open.
Price Range: $100–$800
A Welcoming Rug
Creating a landing strip in your entryway with a bright and durable rug. It not only adds comfort but a colorful rug will also make a statement and give your space a warm pop of color. A rug will also soften the overall look and feel in your entryway, adding a personal touch right when you (or visitors) come in the door. With a small entryway design, try a runner is great for more compact entryways, or go with a 3’ x 5’ mat in the center.
Stylist Tip: In high-traffic areas like an entryway, choose durable rugs and runners—natural fiber, outdoor designs—in darker colors. Washable rugs are also great options.
Price Range: $199–$2000
Pillows & Throws
Similar to a rug, pillows and throws add comfort, color, and a personal touch. Layer one or two pillows on a chair or bench to give yourself something to lean on when you sit down to put on or take off shoes. The best part is that these are decorative pieces you can easily switch out seasonally. Consider warm-hued textiles for the spring and fall, and swap them for pillows and a light throw in cool tones during summer and winter.
Stylist Tip: No need to go overboard. One or two pillows and a throw will go a long way in an entry, and it’s usually all you need to add a pop of color.
Price Range: $50–$200
A Credenza or Cabinet
Storage is key in any size entryway. If you have the space, a credenza or cabinet gives you a practical surface that can serve as a catchall for keys, sunglasses, mail, and other items. A slender credenza or cabinet is always ideal for maximizing floor space, and you’ll want to arrange it along the largest wall in your entryway. This way it won’t feel too bulky and crowd your space physically and visually.
Stylist Tip: The best credenza or cabinet is one that meets all your needs. Say, if you need hidden storage, go with a design that has drawers or closed cabinet doors.
Price Range: $299–$2000
For an alternative to a credenza or cabinet, a console offers practical storage on its surface and also underneath it. The difference is that many console tables come with open shelving and in much narrower sizes, making them perfect for entryways large and small. If you’re not sold on a credenza but need lots of storage, consider a console with drawers or tiered shelving. Just be sure to place it along the longest wall by the front door and invest in some console table styling ideas to make it an extra special welcome home sight.
Stylist Tip: Minimize your entryway furniture footprint as much as possible. Select a slim console that still hits all your needs, like hidden storage or space underneath for baskets, etc.
Price Range: $199–$1000
For added storage for smaller items, like shoes, bags, coats, umbrellas, and other accessories that you need on the go, baskets are indispensable. They’re what we call small-and-mighty workhorse pieces because they’re easy and practical storage that can hold a wide range of items and go anywhere in the home. A few well-placed baskets can go a long way, be it lined up against a wall or stationed right by your front door.
Stylist Tip: Keep to a few baskets so that they don’t overwhelm your entry, and layer them in a neat fashion, like tucked in a corner next to a console or squirreled away on a bottom shelf.
Price Range: $20–$199
Good surface lighting is key in the entryway. A table lamp on a console or credenza will add a touch of warm light and set a welcoming tone. If you have a small entryway, you can swap a table lamp for a pair of sconces, which you can hang on either side of your console, credenza, or bench. The idea here is to give yourself a light source that you can switch on when you come home at night.
Stylist Tip: Find a sturdy lamp that will sit comfortably on your console and not feel like it’ll tumble off if brushed gently by a passerby in the entryway.
Price Range: $50–$299
For those with a spacious entryway, a nice-to-have furniture piece is a floating center table. It’s a great way to visually break up a large space, and it offers a large surface for setting down keys and mail. Floating a table in the center of a grand foyer also makes for a bold statement. You can top it with a centerpiece of seasonal flowers, which will instantly turn it into a stylish focal point that you can dress up or down for different occasions and holidays.
Stylist Tip: A floating table can crowd a small space, so it’s ideal for grand entryways or large rooms that adjoin a foyer. Opt for a round table, which allows for more walking room.
Price Range: $199–$1000
Hooks & Shelves
Also, nice-to-have are hooks and wall shelves that maximize vertical space for sneaky storage. These practical storage pieces are great for hanging jackets, umbrellas, bags, keys, and anything you’ll need on your way out the door. You’ll want to first make sure you have enough wall space to hang coats without it looking overcrowded. The best part is that hooks and wall shelves add storage without taking up floor space, so they’re perfect for both large and small entryways.
Stylist Tip: Don’t overcrowd hangers or wall shelves. Keeping an odd number (two coat racks and one shelf, or two shelves and one coat rack) provides balance and visual interest.
Price Range: $40–$200
Chair or Bench
It’s always nice to have a chair, a bench, or a set of storage ottomans in the entryway. It gives you a comfy place where you can sit down to put on shoes or have your kids hop on and wait while you finish gathering everything before leaving the house. Place a chair next to a console table or station a bench opposite a credenza for a balanced arrangement. A chair or bench also makes for a stylish catchall for your coat or bag when you enter and leave the house.
Stylist Tip: Have a spare dining room chair that you don’t need at the table? Your entryway is a perfect home-away-from-home for it! You can always move it back to the dining room if you need an extra seat, but it still serves a function on the day-to-day.
Price Range: $199–$1000
Little Things The Bring Joy
While the entryway is meant to be a practical space, it should still feel visually exciting and inviting. You can still have fun and style it out by sprinkling little items that show off your personal taste. Decorate your storage surfaces with art, sculptures, vases, bowls, trays, and other accents that bring you joy. These little finishing touches will set a happy mood and are sure to make for welcoming sights every time you walk into your home.
Stylist Tip: Arrange an odd number of art and accents (think groups of three) on the surface of a console or credenza for visual interest. Just leave space for practical items too, like a tray for keys and coins.
Price Range: $20–$1000
Explore our gallery for more entryway design ideas!
Feeling inspired to refresh your entryway?