How to Create a Foyer in an Open Living Room


Stetten Wilson for The Lynden Lane Co.

If your home lacks a foyer but you're looking to carve out a distinct space within your open living room, designers are here to help. There are many helpful steps you can take to carve out a faux foyer in your home. It all comes town to selecting the right furniture, thinking carefully about where pieces are placed, and finishing off the look with some accessories.

Meet the Expert

Think About What Isn't Working

This will help you set an intention when it comes to what you do wish for in a foyer, says Hannah Rasa, interior designer at InSite Builders & Remodeling. "Focusing on what isn't working with the current set-up will help create solutions and inform furniture decisions for the area," she explains. "For example, if sports equipment and shoes are piling up, a bench with an open top for storage and wicker baskets underneath could be a good option." You could even consider labeling the baskets with family members' names so that everyone knows where to put away their individual belongings at the end of the day.


Stetten Wilson for The Lynden Lane Co.

Begin With the Largest Pieces

Pick up a console table and area rug or runner to get started, says Lauren Sullivan of Well x Design. "Both of these items will help differentiate the entryway from the living room," she comments. Rasa agrees. "Strategically placing rugs and furniture like a bench or console can translate one open room into the illusion of two distinct rooms." She adds, "Larger items such as bikes or guitars can be displayed as wall art which can also help to create a separate foyer area within an open living room."

Then, work in smaller pieces that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. "Place a mirror above the console table to reflect light and open up the space—and also for those last-minute outfit checks," Sullivan adds. "Next, add a table lamp and style with found or collected objects." Sullivan suggests finishing off the look with a catchall for keys and perhaps a small plant.

Be Intentional With Furniture

All it takes are a few thoughtfully placed furniture pieces to create a functional and beautiful foyer.
"You can create an entry by simply putting a wall hat rack and a small round table," notes Layne Povey, principal designer at The Lynden Lane Co. Next, don't forget to accessorize, like Sullivan highlighted above. "By utilizing art, mirrors, or entry floral, you can designate the area as something separate and intentional," Povey adds.

Be thoughtful about furniture spacing, too, designer Amy Youngblood says. "Avoid putting any living room furniture right near the foyer, and avoid oversized pieces that might spill out of the foyer into the living room," she comments. "Though we are working to define two spaces, they are still in the same room and should work well together from a design standpoint."


Nathan Shroeder for Roz Murphy

Set Out a Rug

Rugs aren't just functional; they're a great way to help carve out specific zones. "Rugs are a great tool for defining a space, and odds are the living room will have one," Youngblood says. "Adding a small rug or runner by the door will make the space feel welcoming and will really help differentiate the foyer from the living room." You could even take the opportunity to source a beautiful vintage piece that speaks to you and adds some extra personality to the space—talk about an instant conversation starter when guests stop by!

Keep Some Space Open

Again, though you're working within one larger room, you want to create an area that feels distinct, so keeping open space between the foyer nook and main living room is key, Youngblood explains. "This will help the flow when walking from foyer to living room and will make your guests feel comfortable and welcome," she says. Plus, who doesn't want to walk into a space free of clutter? The foyer area can set the tone for the rest of your home, so keeping it clean and airy is certainly ideal.