Makeover for an Awkward Entryway

Decorated entryway by Girl in the Garage

I’m in the midst of redecorating our living room and one of my first projects was to fix an awkward area where the foyer and living room meet.  It’s probably the highest-traffic area in our home, and often becomes a mess of “stuff” – sets of keys, my purse, shopping bags, mail, scarves, etc.  Before, pretty much everything ended up in this chair or on the small table next to the door.   (Warning: Poor quality “before” picture here!)

Half living room wall before - Girl in the Garage

I got a great deal on a large mirror last summer at Goodwill and I knew I wanted to paint it and hang it on that wall.  One of my goals with the living room redo is adding more of my personality and some pops of color.  I am not a brown and beige kind of girl but that’s been the color scheme of this room since we moved into this house a year and a half ago -boooooorrriiiing!  Here is the mirror before I painted it:

Large mirror before painting - Girl in the Garage

I used a Valspar paint sample from Lowe’s called Flood Tide which came across as a beautiful teal/turquoise.  I just love all the little details in the frame, although it made it harder to paint!

Painting the mirror - Girl in the Garage

When the mirror was done, I hung it and rearranged some furniture by bringing over a small cabinet underneath.  I set up some decor that fits with my personality- an Eiffel Tower because I’ve always loved anything French, a stack of vintage books, and a vintage turquoise glass bowl which now holds our keys.

Vintage books and glass bowl - Girl in the Garage

I also hung some wall hooks (one of my purchasing obsessions!) to hold my purse, scarf, etc.  Now I don’t have to leave my necessities thrown on a chair!

Wall hooks - Girl in the Garage

Here is the detail of the top of the mirror:

Detail of mirror top - Girl in the Garage

I really enjoy the finished look of the formerly awkward entryway and that we now have specific places to hold important things.  I’m also excited to incorporate color into one of the most used rooms in the house!

Living room entryway "After" - Girl in the Garage

Do you have any awkward areas in your home that you’ve made into something beautiful and functional?

Do you have any design dilemmas that you’re trying to solve, and need some direction?  I’d love for you to leave a question or comment below!

Happy Decorating, Jen

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34 Comments on Makeover for an Awkward Entryway

    • Jen
      February 8, 2013 at 12:11 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks so much Linda! Glad you stopped by. 🙂 Jen

    • Jen
      February 8, 2013 at 12:12 pm (5 years ago)

      Thank you Amie! Glad to have you here. 🙂 Enjoy your weekend!

  1. Mindi
    February 8, 2013 at 10:16 am (5 years ago)

    Great job! Looks so much better! And I love the hooks!
    Mindi recently posted…Kids Street SignMy Profile

    • Jen
      February 8, 2013 at 12:14 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks Mindi! Hooks are my weakness, lol. I keep buying them until I find somewhere to hang them all.. I have quite a montage in the bathroom. 🙂 Jen

    • Jen
      February 8, 2013 at 4:59 pm (5 years ago)

      Thank you Michele, I’m so happy you stopped by. I’m a follower of your blog and I really enjoy it. 🙂

    • Jen
      February 8, 2013 at 9:27 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks Rebecca, I’m glad you stopped by. Have a great weekend!

    • Jen
      February 9, 2013 at 1:26 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks Angie, glad you stopped by! 🙂

    • Jen
      February 11, 2013 at 7:08 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks Kristen! I just stopped by your party 🙂

  2. Beverly
    February 11, 2013 at 7:49 pm (5 years ago)

    That is gorgeous! I would have never thought it would turn out like this. Great job!
    Beverly recently posted…Old to NewMy Profile

    • Jen
      February 19, 2013 at 1:19 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks Cathy! Glad to have you visiting 🙂

  3. Kris
    April 25, 2013 at 10:43 pm (5 years ago)

    I really like the makeover! The color of the mirror is gorgeous ( love anything aqua/teal/turquoise). I have a weird entryway in my home too, I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with it. Thanks for the inspiration! 🙂

    • Jen
      April 27, 2013 at 1:57 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks so much for visiting, Kris!

  4. Alena@TheHomemadeCreative
    July 2, 2013 at 3:54 pm (5 years ago)

    Great color, and I love the detail in the mirror! ♥ So, here’s a scenario and question for you:

    You live in a townhouse, and parking is by the back door, but most guests park on the curb in front of the building and come to the front door. The backdoor opens straight into the dining room, kitty corner and practically on top of the kitchen (it’s a small townhouse, but you love it anyway). The only possible place by the backdoor to put any kind of entry “space” is below the dining room windows at knee level immediately to the right as you walk in the backdoor. There’s room for a couple of hooks to hang bags, but that’s it – nothing will fit on the floor so no mat for shoes, or furniture of any kind, and it’s too short for even child sized coats. The only other option near the backdoor is to put a shoe mat on the floor on the wall that leads from the backdoor through the dining room and office space into the living room (your tiny townhouse is open concept, and you’ve created “zones”); the shoe mat would live underneath floor to ceiling wall mounted shelves. And there will still be nowhere to hang coats.

    Now, if you go to the front door, you find a different story. The door opens into the living room, on a small entry of linoleum (the rest of the room is carpeted, as are the stairs, which go straight up from about 2.5 feet inside the front door). The wall to the left of the door is useless, as it will have curtains on it (whenever you get around to putting them up), but the wall to the left of the door (behind it, when open) has lots of lovely blank space. You already plan to put a lovely large canvas of your favorite photo there, and are considering creating a piece of faux furniture by mounting bead board with trim, and hanging coat hooks from it in 2 rows (high for adults, low for children), but there really isn’t room for anything that actually sticks out from the wall, like a shelf or mat. You’ve considered putting a small shoe mat on the floor to the left of the door, in the space between the curtain and the edge of your wing back chair, but you’re concerned that will look tacky and messy. In the living room proper, about 10 feet from the door, you do have an under-stairs closet that houses your water heater, and you plan to store out of season coats and shoes there, but it’s not at all practical for daily use. Also, the number one problem with doing any kind of “going out” organization set up at the front entry is that nobody who actually lives in your home uses it, unless they are going out on foot (which does happen, but you’re more likely to need your “going out” stuff if you’re driving), so while it would give you entry storage, it’s on the wrong end of the house for actually leaving (though again, open concept).

    What would you do??

    ((I totally understand if you don’t answer this, but thought I’d ask since you’re clever ♥))
    Alena@TheHomemadeCreative recently posted…Honor & Obey | Book Review of The Quarryman’s Bride by Tracie PetersonMy Profile

    • Jen
      July 5, 2013 at 3:13 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks for your sweet comment Alena. I read through your scenario and it might actually help if I have a visual – feel free to send me a few photos and I’ll try to help out! 🙂

  5. Alli
    September 26, 2013 at 4:40 am (5 years ago)

    Jen, I’m in love with your mirror! Makes me want to rush out and find one and do a copycat makeover. I couldn’t live without my bowl to hold keys, but yours is so much prettier. I really like what you did to spruce up your entryway.
    Alli recently posted…Throwback ThursdayMy Profile

  6. Shelly-
    September 26, 2013 at 8:19 am (5 years ago)

    This is gorgeous!!!!!! WOW!! Found you on throwback Thursday! I too am just a girl in a garage!!! Deff a new follower!!!!!

    Shelly from MinettesMaze
    Shelly- recently posted…Happy Fall Ya’llMy Profile

  7. Paula@SweetPea
    September 26, 2013 at 12:46 pm (5 years ago)

    I love the color tha tyou choose for your mirror. Having a spot for keys and your purse is so handy.
    Paula@SweetPea recently posted…Throwback Thursday #3My Profile

  8. Linda
    February 1, 2014 at 8:26 pm (4 years ago)

    Looks great. I love the mirror. I have one similar. I had it hung for a year then decided to use a little antique stain. Wow! Did it bring out the detail in my mirror.

  9. Nanc;y
    August 29, 2014 at 8:00 pm (4 years ago)

    This is just what I’ve been looking for: a mirror and a wall table together. I just finished painting my table a turquoise blue with gold accents. The mirror is Chippendale style and in good shape overall. Now I don’t know whether to paint it the same color, a contrasting color, or keep it dark brown natural. The entry way is very small with a closet right beside it.
    Thanks for any advice!

    • Jen
      August 31, 2014 at 10:05 pm (4 years ago)

      Nancy, the mirror would probably be gorgeous in gold! It would look beautiful with the table. I love turquoise and gold together.

  10. Lisa
    July 19, 2015 at 11:35 am (3 years ago)

    Love your colors and ideas. I have a hexagon shaped small wood table the is a brown stain with what looks like a black thin layer of soapstone or something on top. My plan is to paint the wood and not the black top, what color would you recommend. I was thinking that dark turquoise blue that you use. Any thoughts. Also if I need to make the top will it take paint?

    • Jen
      July 24, 2015 at 10:23 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi Lisa, for the dark turquoise blue – do you mean Aubusson Blue from Annie Sloan Chalk Paint? It’s a really pretty blue! One great thing about Chalk Paint is that it will stick to almost any surface- so it should work on the top also. If you’re really concerned you can use a coat of primer first. Hope that helps – good luck!

  11. Sue
    June 29, 2017 at 4:42 am (1 year ago)

    Just discovered this on Pinterest and I love your key and handbag organising ideas. I’m always changing out things to house our keys and I adore your turquoise bowl. As for the handbag hooks – genius! I’ve just redecorated our bedroom and I’m struggling for something to do with my handbags. You’ve inspired me! Thank you 🙂 Sue ~ The World of Suzy Homemaker

    • Jen
      June 29, 2017 at 6:40 pm (1 year ago)

      Thanks Sue! I have a big collection of vintage turquoise glass now, but that bowl is still one of my favorites. 🙂


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