We’re so happy to welcome Alyssa back with her home tour and show how a MN photographer and her husband are updating their home into their dream family home. Today she’s sharing walking you through the small, but impactful modifications they’ve made to their entryway. Take it away, Alyssa…
We are coming up on a full year past the purchase date of our home. Making a house a home takes time. Time to plan a space, time to select your furnishings, and time to save money to purchase everything on your list. When we first purchased this home, I knew the entryway had the potential to be a stunning space with maple wood floors, natural light, and high ceilings. However, I also knew the light fixture had to go. The light became our first priority ever since we toured this home. Once we found mold on the entryway door, replacing the front door made its way up the home to-do list pretty quickly. The entryway rug was a pre-owned rug at the time we purchased the house, but we quickly realized how important it is to select the right size rug for a space. One big takeaway: do your homework on rugs — it makes the biggest difference in a space.
As you can see from the before pics below, the bones were there. All the space needed was a little care, thoughtful design, and perfect selections.
The first thing we updated was the light fixture, because our family spends so much time in this space, and seeing the old fixture every day bothered me. I knew changing the fixture would make a dramatic difference and we found the perfect light at Lamps Plus. The minimalist lines of the matte black structure added a modern flair to the Scandinavian theme we wanted. The center brass finish tied in well with the wood throughout the home. We knew this was key as we are keeping the wood trim throughout the home.
Some elements stayed the same in our makeover. I purchased a matte black frame to go with a piece of thrifted artwork on the wall. The wood bench, from Findfurnish in Minneapolis, is only for show and not too sturdy, which makes it challenging with guests. I love design pieces that have beauty AND function. However, this piece is worth the sacrifice.
We selected a rectangular neutral rug to tie into the artwork color palette, while not being too matchy-matchy. I was hunting for the perfect rug for more than three months and would have to say it was the toughest decision I made for this space. The rug quality is thicker than I anticipated and has a subtle geometric design to complement all of the lines repeated throughout the space.
To get a perfect size, I got out the tape measure and then measured out a 5’ by 5’ square. The existing circle rug helped me determine that a new shape would help maximize the space and coverage. I shopped at various websites and found the best deal at the time at Overstock. It helps to keep a spreadsheet of potential purchases and then watch pricing change. One thing I have noticed is markdowns are not truly accurate. One month the rug was $500 and then the next month was 50% off at $400. When truly, it was only $100 less than the previous month. Keep your eye on this marketing hack.
Our front door is 1-Provia Legacy Series Steel with Emtek Hardware. We replaced a single door and two sidelights with a double door. I asked for an 8’ door, but it wasn’t possible with the upper window and the stucco surround. We were given the green light for a double door, but had to go skinnier than a traditional double door. I was excited about this as it gives the illusion of a taller door when really it’s very average. To do this, we upgraded to steel for the custom work around the stucco and fill the gaps.
The style and color was an easy decision for us as we had done a lot of research online (aka Pinterest) for the specific design. We wanted a sophisticated, simple look and stain to match the existing trim. The entire front door process took around four months from start to finish. The longest lead time was waiting for the actual door and the team to install it. Once we set the install date, the old door was out, and the new door installed, all in eight hours.
This space is now something our family loves and adores. My favorite elements are how the lines throughout the space including the light fixture to the frame, and the horizontal wood grid in the vintage bench, to the grid of the glass in the front door all flow and compliment one another. The rug completed the space and tied everything together. The time it took to make it our own with our style and selections was worth the wait. Now, we will welcome guests with confidence that our entryway reflects our family’s taste and style.
- Front Door: Great Plains Windows and Doors, Adam Swenson, 1-Provia Legacy Series Steel Entry Door
- Artwork: Thrift Store