Do you remember how I have been slowly but surely making over my living room? Now that I'm nearly done in there, I've decided that the next place I'm going to work is in my entry hallway. Today I want to share with you a few home decorating ideas that I used in my hallway to give it a little nudge in the direction I want to go. Of course, as with any project I take on, I've only scratched the surface and have more I want to do.
I'm so in love with what I've done to give my entry hallway a new look…and I gained a little more storage space (cute storage space, too!) in the process, which is always a great thing!
I'm not a professional decorator and not the best stylist (in terms of my photography of home spaces), but I think I can put a room together and I know what I like, so I'm going to share a few home decorating ideas with you today. Ideas of how to make an entry hallway inviting, yet practical for your needs.
This little hallway refresh was brought about because Sauder invited me to participate in their furniture design challenge and they sponsored this post as well as sent me a piece of furniture. Now, I have to tell you that I totally wanted to take part in this challenge and I was totally intimidated to participate as well. I mean have you seen the pictures of the home decor bloggers homes? They are amazing, perfectly styled and magazine worthy, right? Yep. I'm not like that. I can't seem to style and photograph that well.
Yet, Sauder asked me to participate, so they must like what I do. The challenge was to show how to enhance my home and reflect my style in my home. Oh…I can do that. Like I said, I know what I like and I know where I want to take my home in terms of the look and feel of things. Plus, I love putting furniture together, so off I went to give my hallway a more inviting feel.
Let's start by taking a look at what my hallway looked like before my mini makeover or refresh.
I bought this chest of drawers about a year ago to add some storage for placemats and mostly for storing supplies for upcoming blog posts or props for photography. The photos on the walls haven't been updated in about 3 years. I'm thinking I need to address that as well.
This is looking from my kitchen toward the front door. Now, I could pretend that the DIY Heart Shaped Chalkboard I made over a year ago is only still there because Valentine's Day was just 2 months ago, but nope, it has been hanging there for over a year now. I totally meant to make another shaped chalkboard piece for that space but have never gotten around to it. My girls really like the board and love leaving notes on it for the family, so it has stayed despite the fact that it isn't Valentine's Day anymore (or year round).
This side of the hallway often contains things that need to be sold or donated…now that makes an inviting entrance, right? Let me show you all the stuff we no longer want…Welcome!
Unfortunately, we don't have a garage and since this is the least used space in our home it will probably continue to contain those items. Anyone want to buy a Critter house with lots of sets of animals and furniture? I want it gone. 🙂
The first thing I did to start this refresh off was to get the Cottage Road Bench that Sauder sent me out of the box. I have built many pieces of furniture in my days. I love it! I am usually disappointed when I buy something, like the chest of drawers in the hallway, and it is already put together. 🙁
The Cottage Road Bench was partially put together and packaged very well. Everything was easy to find and well packaged so that nothing would be damaged in transit.
I had a cute helper to put the bench together. We each got to attach two legs. This bench is a wonderful solid piece. I'm really happy with the quality of the piece. It feels like nice solid wood that can stand the test of time in my house (you know a house with kids).
I knew I wanted that bench right along the wall that had contained the chest of drawers. I moved the chest of drawers to the left of the front door and added the bench to the entry hall as the first thing people see when they enter. It strikes me as a great place for people to place bags or shoes if they prefer to take shoes off.
Just across the hall from the bench, I have this cute mirror that has hooks on it. Great way to add some light to my dark hallway and provide a place to hang coats for guests.
The chest of drawers fits really well in this space. I like that I have something to fill this wall and space. It looks nice when I see it the 500 times a day I walk by this space to go upstairs.
To let you see everything, I use this primarily for blog storage. I have props in the top left and middle drawers. Blog post supplies in the top middle and bottom drawers and some mason jars and batteries in the top right drawer.
Now, I realize that by adding my glittery wine bottle craft I've made this area look even more like leftover Valentine's Day decor, but I really wanted these wine bottles to sit out all year round and in a place I will see often. This is the perfect spot. I explained why I wanted them sitting out in the post where I showed you how to make those bottles. For now, I plan to leave this area like this.
The bench is my new area, it really helps create an inviting entry. I love the pillows I found to add on top. They make it feel like a cozy place to sit.
I took the opportunity during this refresh to update the pictures! Yay! My girls were very excited about this because they kept commenting on the fact that they are no longer 5 and 10. They wanted that reflected in these and other pictures around the house.
I did a collage in one frame of pictures from the road trip the girls and I did last summer. (Part 1 and Part 2) The other frame has a collage of pictures from our recent family pictures. They will eventually be on my about me page…we had a super fun time having pictures taken. The girls tied me up with sparkle ribbon…need I say more? We like to have fun.
With my refresh, I knew I wanted to add a little more storage space because I always need more storage space. Who doesn't? I had been looking for a reason to buy these baskets, which I love. They measured as the perfect size to fit under the bench. Yay! Reason found.
Not only are the great looking and add extra storage, but I think they add some additional interest and coziness to the area. That is something I try to add in my home decorating ideas. Things that add cute storage and add some interest and coziness. Perfect.
For now the baskets are empty. I have ideas of what I will store in them, but until I fully make up my mind I'm enjoying some empty space.
To keep the metal from scratching the floor, I had some adhesive felt pads that are made just for this purpose. I only had 4 left. I just cut them in half and added them to the bottom of the basket. Now there is no worry that the metal will scratch my floors…of course our floors are in such bad shape that it probably wouldn't matter anyway…another project for another day and a whole different wallet. 😉
The baskets and the bench are a perfect fit to hide the box and outlet for our alarm system. I have tried many things to cover this unsightly thing. Why did they install it in the plug in the hallway…where everyone can see it? Oh yeah, that was my fault. I made that choice…about a week after having a baby and moving into a new house. Anyway, the bench is the perfect height to cover it and the benches slide right around it on both sides. Perfect!
I just love the details of the bench and the beautiful legs. Just enough to add interest and give me that cottage furniture and cottage style I love, not something ornate or something that isn't my style.
The crux of my mini makeover is this new bench with the pillows and baskets. It is just the style I'm headed toward in this area of my house. I feel like it shows people who enter our house a little bit about us, while being functional for our needs and pretty to look at.
Looking forward, I am saving up to have this area painted. I've painted plenty in my life, but this hallway connects to our stairwell and upstairs hallway. There is a good portion, above the stairs, that is very hard to reach. I paid someone to paint it when we first moved in and I plan to do so again. When I do that, I will be taking down the ugly chair rail that I really don't like and painting the trim white, just like I did in our living room. I can't wait. It is going to look so nice. Room by room, I will get it done as my budget allows.
This was a great start and an easy way to inspire myself toward where I want to go. I can see it now. All it took was a beautiful bench, pillows and baskets to make my vision come to life. You can do the same at your house. Find a piece of furniture that reflects where you want to take the room, do a mini makeover or refresh and inspire yourself to keep moving forward as your budget allows. Just listen to your style and don't worry about what is in the magazines or getting it perfect. It needs to be what you love and what works for you and your family. ♥
Make sure you follow Sauder on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter to get more inspiration and ideas for your home. You can also get tons of great inspiration from their latest lookbook…it has so many great ideas for all rooms of your house.
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sauder. The opinions and text are all mine.