icon How to Create a Foyer in an Open Living Room

How to Create a Foyer in an Open Living Room

Imagine this: you’re hosting a party in your home for the first time. Everything is going perfectly, all your guests have RSVP’d, the food you’re cooking looks like it will be ready on time, and you have everything you need to make those cocktails you’re famous for.

The only problem? There isn’t anywhere for your guests to put your things when they come in. The second they walk in, they’re in the middle of your living room.

Small foyer area with a teal door, and yellow entry table.

However, if you know how to create a foyer in an open living room, then you can give the illusion of having a foyer.

In this article, we’ll review all the different creative ways you can create your foyer in your living room family room. They can be used whether you’re living in a colonial, postwar, or modern home.

That way, you can finally have a home that’s welcoming—and gives you a place to leave your keys, purse, and other accessories. Read on to learn more.

Use the Corner

If there’s a small corner near where your door opens, then you can use it to set up a foyer space. All you have to do is set up a large chair there, put a pillow or two on top, or a basket beneath it. It’s a small space, but it’s somewhere where:

  • Your guests can leave their shoes
  • You can put your purse down
  • You can place books to establish it as a table-like area
Gray wing back chair with a red throw on it and an open magazine sitting on it.

When designing this small area, there are several steps you should take to make sure it works with the rest of your home. You should:

  1.  Measure the area so the chair fits snugly in the corner
  2.  Ensure the chair fits with the rest of your home décor in terms of material
  3.  Select a low chair, so it provides a comfortable vibe
  4.  Choose bright, decorative-style pillows

Once you’ve selected the right chair and placed the pillows and baskets on and underneath it, remember to keep the area free of clutter. Otherwise, what is a welcoming foyer could quickly become a messy entryway into your home you work so hard to keep beautiful.

Keep in mind that, if a chair doesn’t work, you can also use an accent table to create a foyer in the corner.

Place a Skinny Table Against the Hallway

In some homes, the front door opens straight into the hallway. If this is the case in your home, then there’s an easy way to create the illusion of a foyer: simply place a skinny table against the hallway. To do this properly, you need to take several steps:

  1.  Measure the area so people can still walk through the hallway easily
  2.  Make sure the height of the table is at hip level
  3.  Match the material with the décor of your living area
Thin metal entry table with various items sitting on it.
Image courtesy of West Elm

Additionally, once you’ve bought your table, there are several things you can do to show that it’s the foyer space. Put down a ceramic bowl to leave your keys and other accessories. Placing a basket underneath will give guests a place to leave their things.

You can also decorate the table with a playful vintage item like an old vase or ceramic piece. Keep in mind that console tables can also be a good choice as skinny tables.

Use a Sofa Table

Here’s another interior design trick you can use if your floor plan means that your door opens straight into your living room. Move around the sofas in the living room so that the back of one of your longer sofas is facing guests when they come in.

Then, you can place a sofa table behind it. When selecting your sofa table, do the following:

  1.  Take the correct measurements so it’s the same length as your sofa
  2.  Make it a bit of a statement piece so guests see it when they first come in
  3.  Choose a material that matches your living room décor
Living room view focused on the console table behind a sofa.
Image courtesy of West Elm

Once you’ve selected your sofa table, you’ll have room for many different objects that weigh you down the second you’re coming into the house. These objects include:

  • Your keys
  • Your mail
  • Your shoes
  • Your purse
  • Your scarves

If you want to make this area even more welcoming for guests, place a large bowl on the sofa table. They can leave their accessories here. If you place a couple of baskets underneath, one can be for purse or bag storage and the other for shoe storage.

Transform Your Coat Closet

One of the best small spaces you can use for creating a foyer is your coat closet. If the closet is currently filled with jackets, scarves, hats, and other accessories, it may be time to empty it out and take a look inside. To fully transform your coat closet, you should:

  1.  Look at the space when it’s empty and think about what you can remove
  2.  If there’s a large bar in the middle, remove it
  3.  Consider repainting the inside a bright, welcoming color
  4.  Add spaced-out hooks at eye-level
  5.  Place a low table or basket at the bottom
  6.  Remove the door (and smooth down the hinge area if needed)
Close up of hooks on the back of a door

By making these changes to your closet, it is now a large, welcoming space where it’s easy for your guests to place their coats, scarves, purses, and shoes. Of course, at this point, you might be wondering: “Okay, but what about my own stuff?”

If you’re creative about how you manage your storage, you should be able to have room for both your things and your guests’ accessories.

If there’s a high shelf in your closet, for example, you can place wicker storage boxes there for your things.

In addition to making your home more welcoming to your guests, this will also encourage you to hang only a coat or two of yours in the closet, which means your home will be better organized.

Place a Bench Along the Hallway

If you have enough space in your hallway that your front door opens up into, it’s a good idea to place a bench along the wall. A bench has two purposes: function and design. In terms of function, it’s the perfect place for your guests to sit down and take off their shoes.

They can also place different objects on or beneath the bench since it’s so large. If you place baskets underneath, this provides even more storage (both for you and your guests).

Entry wall with wallpaper, wall hooks with hanging coats, bench below with shoes on it.

Some benches come with a second shelf on the bottom, which is another area to put things in. To decorate the space to make it into a foyer, you can:

  • Place a mirror above the bench
  • Place a painting above the bench
  • Place a couple of large coffee table books on the bench

Additionally, a bench can really make a statement. Whether you choose a modern or retro bench, it can go with the decor in the rest of your home, such as your living or dining room. It’s an introduction to the design of your entire living space.

To choose the right bench for your entryway hall, you need to:

  1.  Measure the area so guests don’t bump against the bench when walking in
  2.  If you have a short hallway, make sure the bench isn’t longer than it
  3.  Choose a bench that goes with your decor

Once you’ve selected the right bench, you’ll suddenly see your entryway transformed. You’ll have a place where you can leave your things and your guests will, too.

Use Wall Hooks

If you’re tight for space in your entryway, many of the solutions involving adding additional furniture (or even a coat rack) won’t work for you. This is where using wall hooks can be incredibly advantageous. They don’t take up any room, but you suddenly have more storage.

To choose the right wall hooks for your faux foyer, it’s smart to use hooks that are all together on a board or on a lifted shelf. To do this right, you need to:

  1.  Be generous with your length measurements, so the piece makes a statement
  2.  Select a material that matches your decor
  3.  Select the number of hooks based on how often you have people over
  4.  Reserve some hooks for you and your family
Wall papered wall with a blue coat hanging on wall hooks as well as ballerina slippers, bench below with books and a plant.

Installing these wall hooks should be pretty easy, but it might be worth contacting home builders if you live in a home where the walls could be easily damaged by this installation. Additionally, you might want to think of getting a lifted shelf with hooks.

If you have a lifted shelf, this gives you extra storage space, as you can also place objects above the hung-up coats, scarves, and purses.

Create a Gallery Wall

Another solution, if you’re short on entryway space, is to create a gallery wall. To do this, you have to find a space in your entryway wall where you could place several paintings or photographs. Like using a bench, this is both functional and decorative.

It’s functional in that it will introduce guests to your home. Couple this wall with an area rug, and even if you don’t have room for furniture or hooks, guests will feel that they’ve stepped into a foyer.

Gallery wall art of funky organic designs in pinks, greens and black.

Additionally, this is a decorative choice. When selecting the artwork, think about:

  • What frames will match your home’s décor
  • What images represent who you are
  • How many pieces of art you want up

You may find, as you start to select artwork, that the wall might feel cluttered. For this reason, it’s smart to buy artwork from places that make it easy to return it if necessary. If you need tips on how to break up a large wall with wall art, check them out here.

Build a Pony Wall

If your home has such an open layout that you can see your kitchen, dining, and living room areas the second you walk in, you may need to actually make a larger change to your home to have a foyer. Don’t worry, it’s not as big a change as replacing your garage door.

What you have to do is build a pony wall. This is a small wall that can be used to divide up an area without going all the way up to your ceiling.

By installing it near your entrance, between the entryway and the rest of your home, you’ll be building a small foyer space. To do this properly, you need to:

  1.  Measure the area so the pony wall doesn’t take over
  2.  Decide if you want the color to be contrasting or complementary
  3.  Choose a height that’s comfortable (knee to thigh height is probably best)
  4.  Use drywall, bead board, and paneling for the sides
  5.  Use hardwood for the top (unless this totally clashes with your decor)

You will also want to think about adding decorative details. Additionally, think about whether you want to add open cubbies or small columns, as this can provide your guests with a space to put their things.

Need More Tips on How to Create a Foyer in an Open Living Room?

Now that you’ve learned about how to create a foyer in an open living room, you might need additional tips. Maybe you want help measuring specific pieces of furniture. Or maybe you want help deciding which strategy is best for accomplishing your design goals.

Whatever you need, we can help. At Melissa Vickers Design, we’re experts when it comes to all your interior design needs. We also offer interior design services. To learn more about how we can help you, contact us now.

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