How to Lighten Up an Extra-Small Foyer

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The foyer sets the tone for the rest of the house. Whether it's formal and stately or small and cozy, it tells guests about your lifestyle, your decorating preferences and what to expect from your home. A small foyer poses a challenge because it can appear dark and gloomy, particularly if it doesn't receive much natural light. Transform your foyer into an attractive, welcoming room that introduces you in flattering terms to the rest of the world.

Things You'll Need

  • Paint
  • Hat stand
  • Small table
  • Lighting
  • Throw rug
  • Mirror
  • Potted plant or flowers
  • Glass-topped table
  • Shelving unit
  • Wall hanging
  • Paint the walls with a light, neutral color to give the impression of spaciousness. Paint trim the same color as the wall, or one shade lighter, to avoid stopping the eye and shortening the space.

  • Clear out clutter and unnecessary furnishings from the foyer. Choose a few simple items for the area, such as a tall, narrow hatstand or a small table. Sparse furnishings help to open up the space.

  • Install lighting like a floor lamp, table lamp or chandelier to brighten the room and create a welcoming glow for guests.

  • Place a throw rug on the floor to add color and pattern to the room. Use a durable style that gives guests a place to wipe their feet. A small pattern can accent the space without overwhelming the room.

  • Install a decorative mirror on the wall, or place a smaller one on a table or stand. Mirrors reflect light, helping to brighten a small foyer. The reflection of the room also gives the impression of a larger space.

  • Place a small potted plant or a vase of fresh flowers on a table or plant stand to bring a touch of nature into the room. Water it frequently -- a dead plant isn't very welcoming or attractive.

  • Use the vertical space to make up for limited floor space. A tall, tiered shelving unit can hold car keys, mail and driving gloves for easy access on the way out the door as well as decorative knickknacks.

  • Draw attention away from a narrow foyer with a striking piece of art, a large, ornate clock or wall hanging placed on an adjoining wall in direct line of sight from the front door.

Tips & Warnings

  • Glass-topped tables increase the visible space and allow light through, giving the room a brighter appearance.

References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images
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