The entryway may be one of the most hard-working spaces in your home. After not having a proper entryway in my first two homes, I swore I would get it right on our third one. Then I fell in love with our tiny home built in 1875, with no real entryway near our garage entrance and bought it anyway. Once you have a well working entryway, you'll save yourself time and energy in not looking for the things you need daily, like coats, mittens, hats, umbrellas, shoes and bags.
>> Remember how you'll use your place. We have a great front entrance with a porch and a spot for an entryway idea off the front of the house. But we park our cars in the driveway or the garage and always go in the back. The back of our house does have a small mudroom area, but it is not insulated. Since we live in a very cold winter climate, this doesn't work for coats, boots and stuff that needs to be kept where it is warm. The only other place we could use is a tiny hallway that leads down to our cellar / laundry room. Luckily, there are only three of us and we don't have that much stuff, so we can make it work. I decided hooks would work best because we don't have any room for a rod with hangers. Plus we have to walk through this area to go downstairs so it can't stick out too far. It took me a year and two months to make this area really useful. Be patient and you'll figure your space out too. Watch your patterns and see where you can really use a landing strip for your lifestyle.
>> It is ok to ask for help. Once I painted the walls and trim and bought the hooks and boards (at Lowes), I realized I was in over my head. I asked my husband to cut the boards after I painted them. And as it turned out, hanging the boards and attaching the hooks was really a two person job anyway. We had to level the boards, then eyeball them to make sure they worked with the slant of an old house. Getting each hook on the board vertically and horizontally spaced out took some math, but we figured it out eventually.
>> Don't worry if your entryway has to be spread out. In our entryway we can store: shoes on the rug under the hooks, mittens and hats in a wood box I found at an antique store and bags and coats on the hooks on the walls. But I still need an entirely different spot for paperwork, keys, phone etc. Try and figure out the best spot for these places in your home. Ask your family to try the newly designated set up for a week and see how it goes. You may end up moving things around a bit until it feels right.
>> Other things to consider
Keep a garbage and drawer / basket near your door and only touch your mail once. Open it, put it in the basket for filing, or recycle it right away. This will save you time in the long run in not having to go through your mail over and over again.
Make sure your entryway is well lit so you can see what you are doing and it is more inviting. Add a lamp if needed.
Have a boot tray or rug for wet weathered shoes and boots. This one is from a restaurant supply store and I got this idea from Martha Stewart. It works great because you can easily wash the tray in the tub over colder months, or outside with the hose during warmer months. Having a boot tray will make cleaning the floors much easier and help wrangle boots so they aren't all over the floor.
There are many ways to set up your entryway. Take a look at my Pinterest board to see a wide range of ideas that might work for you.