The first impression that people have of your home is the front entryway: whether they’re driving by and admiring your lovely new front door or checking out the ferns and swing on your porch - the front entry is an impression that lasts. You want your home to be welcoming and warm, with an entryway that leads people up and into your home instead of barring them from entrance. Clutter can get in the way very easily; with an overabundance of chairs, rugs, pillows and plants making it feel as though you’re entering a jungle instead of a private residence. Don’t fall victim to these hospitality no-no’s; instead, create an entryway that will have people drawing close to enter, and staying for the great company that can be found inside.
It’s important that the walkway leading to your home is well-maintained, as your guests will have time to look around and comment on the beautiful landscaping - or lack thereof! Don’t give them anything negative to discuss by assuring that your mulch is in decent shape and recently-replaced, that all of your plants are well-trimmed and that your yard isn’t growing up into a wilderness of weeds. This doesn’t mean that you have to have anything fancy - clean and simple beats out overblown every time. Make sure your walkway is well-lit by lights from your front porch or by adding some solar lights at intervals to be sure your guests aren’t stumbling around in the dark.
A Pop of Color
While it’s not for everyone, some homeowners are really happy with adding a little pop of color to the front of their home. Whether this means repainting the front door, or adding some shutters that are a little out of the ordinary, adding a little touch of color can really make a difference in livening up the look of your home from a distance.
Amplify Design Elements
If you have specific design elements in your home, such as arched windows, consider repeating them in the design of your door. This can really bring attention to the arch and add a more welcoming feel to a standard rectangular home. The entryway is a small enough area that you can also splurge a little on some neat design elements, such as custom tiles or other insets for your walkway. While you may not be able to afford these pricey touches throughout the walkway, the stairs leading up to your home are somewhere you might want to make an investment.
While not all homes with front porches have room for a full table and chairs set, there is often room for a lovely swing or a set of rocking chairs—making this the ideal place to sit and watch the sun rise or set with a coffee and friends or family. The concern is always that you overstuff the area, so be cautious that whatever you choose is still small and taking up only a little of the room that you have available, leaving plenty of space for people to walk around you on the porch. Add some decorative elements such as a fancy light fixture or some Chinese lanterns, which can add interest without adding a great deal of cost to your project.
Consider Your Personality
Some people are naturalists, so having a profusion of different types of plants and flowers doesn’t detract from the look but instead gives your front entryway the feel of a wild English garden, full of the beauty of nature. Bringing in a variety of shades really works for this type of home and personality, while it may fall flat with other types of homes. A more formal setting would be overwhelmed if you added a number of flowers, and instead would work well with very structured plants in taller and more stately containers. A few larger masterpiece plantings on the porch would be a way to add interest and color to a home that is a bit more on the grandiose side, while still being welcoming to guests.
When fall rolls around, many people look for beautiful and vibrant colors to introduce to their front entryway with mums, pumpkins and other bright hues of the season. The same is true of spring; and in the winter-well, seasonal decoration pretty much takes care of itself! Don’t be afraid to add a lovely wreath to your front door or change out the pillows on your swing based on the season. While you probably don’t want to go overboard, there are small touches that can help get your guests in the spirit of the season without clashing with your everyday design elements. Add mini pumpkins to a massive flowerpot of mums, and wait for the compliments to roll in! Consider creating a harvest doorway in the fall by adding eye-catching red and golden leaves, plants and even corn stalks - granted your entryway is large enough to support this type of display.
Decorating your entryway to create a welcoming environment both for your guests and for yourself can be a great deal of fun, and doesn’t have to cost a fortune. A few small tweaks such as adding contemporary lighting can make a huge difference in the curb appeal of your home.
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