This Makeover Fakes a Beautiful and Functional Entryway

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    How to Fake an Orderly Entryway

    Deirdre Sullivan

    Wish your home had an actual entryway? We faked one in our New York City apartment by transforming a slice of wall space into a landing strip.

    If you're not in the know, a landing strip is a drop zone near the front door for corralling grab-and-go items like your wallet, umbrella, and those darn keys you always misplace. 

    But our project's goodness doesn't stop there. Our makeover features a DIY vestibule that will keep your space out of sight when you answer the door. Have an eyesore electrical panel? We share how to conceal it with an IKEA cabinet.

    There are more ideas worth stealing so read on!

    FYI, there's a buying guide at the end of the post.

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  • 02 of 12

    Sad Before Photo

    Deirdre Sullivan

    To truly appreciate this makeover, behold the sad before photo. 

    Our nonexistent entryway had a weird wall with a textured matte surface that looked dated and cheap. Worse was the eyesore electrical panel next to the intercom. But the front door was the cherry on this mud pie. Since it opened inward, it seriously reduced the amount of usable square footage for traditional entryway furniture.

    Related: 13 Ingenious IKEA Storage Hacks for Your Small Entryway

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    Frightful Wood Floor

    Deirdre Sullivan

    Even more frightful, was the damaged wood floor. It was the only project on our entryway to-do list a decorating trick couldn't fix.

    Related: 7 Fast and Fabulous Fixes for Frightful Floors

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    No More Frightful Floor

    Deirdre Sullivan

    Flash forward — Ta-da, the refinished floor!

    Related: What You Need to Know Before Refinishing Old Hardwood Floors

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    Refresh With Wallpaper

    Deirdre Sullivan

    Carving out space for the entryway was the first step. We used peel and stick vinyl wallpaper by Tempaper to separate the nook from the living room. Before installing the textured wall was sanded and primed.

    Why peel and stick vinyl wallpaper? It's washable. It's also easy to DIY when you know all the tricks. ​This video explains.

    Related: 7 Cheap and Chic Ways to Dress Up Walls Without Paint

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    Get the Ultimate Landing Strip

    Deirdre Sullivan

    While you can use a table or shelf to create an entryway drop zone, we wanted a solution that made stuff disappear in a 30-inch wide space. Two sets of floating drawers by IKEA were the perfect fit. They make it a cinch to keep grab-and-go items organized without sacrificing an inch of the floor. 

    Related: 19 Best IKEA IVAR Storage Hacks

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  • 07 of 12

    Concealing an Ugly Electrical Panel

    Cabinet for Electrical Box Hack
    Deirdre Sullivan

    If we had the cash and know-how to move our electrical panel we would — except we don't. Covering its door with black contact paper didn't make it any cuter. Happily, we found an IKEA cabinet that concealed the eyesore we nicknamed "the big zit."

    Before hanging the cabinet, we shortened its depth with a table saw.  ​This post by Curbly revealed how to get the job done without destroying the Melamine veneer.

    Related: 9 Tips for Buying and Assembling IKEA Furniture

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  • 08 of 12

    Rice Paper Window Film

    Deirdre Sulivan

    The icing on the proverbial Cronut is the rice paper privacy film on the glass door.

    What's behind the mysterious glow?

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  • 09 of 12

    Simple Lighting Hack

    Deirdre Sullivan

    Our tiny entryway doesn't have an overhead light. To brighten things up at night, we keep a battery operated candle in the cabinet. It has a realistic faux flame and even better a timer that's programmed to switch on at dusk for five hours. 

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    Pretty and Practical Floor Covering

    Deirdre Sullivan

    While most of the stuff needed to fake the perfect entryway are debatable, a durable rug is always a must. It's the crucial ingredient that protects high traffic floors from dirt and water while also preventing wet feet from slipping.

    Vinyl floor cloths are a beautiful option that can withstand muck. This one is 1/8" thick with edges that don't curl. To clean, just wipe with tap water.

    Related: 5 DIY Boot and Shoe Racks for Small Entryways

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    How to Hack a Vestibule

    Deirdre Sullivan

    Whenever we answered the front door, anyone in the building's hallway could see our kitchen and living room. For us, it was maddening because we live on the first floor directly next to the lobby. Floor to ceiling curtains hung on a curved rod created a tiny vestibule that solved the problem. We share where you can buy all the décor used in this makeover next.

    Related: Curtains Ideas for Dividing Seriously Small Apartments

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    Get the Look

    Deirdre Sullivan

    Want to get the look? Here's the buying guide:

    1. Wallpaper by Tempaper: It's a removable peel and stick wall covering that's a cinch to reposition. Rolls start at $89.
    2. IKEA VALJE floating cabinets: One unit with two drawers is $85.
    3. Red Brimnes Ikea Cabinet: The piece of storage furniture is perfect for concealing a small, ugly electrical panel. Even better it's a steal at $39.99. 
    4. Rice paper patterned privacy film: One roll costs around $20.
    5. Battery operated faux flame candle by Luminara: Most home improvement stores sell them for $35.
    6. Vinyl Floor Cloth in Astraea pattern: The durable rug stands up to mud and water. There are more than 100 designs to choose from for $50 and more. 
    7. Curtains and rod: Shown here are two sets of IKEA MERETE curtains ($29.99 per pair) hung on an IKEA HUGAD rod ($4.99) with two coordinating corner connectors ($5.99 each) and two IKEA BETYDLIG brackets ($1.99 each).