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Our front hallway has a habit of becoming a disaster. There’s nothing more tempting when coming home after a long day than just tossing your stuff wherever. Sure, we could make a big effort to put things away in the areas of the house where we have more space, but I learned a long time ago that the best way to get an area to stay clean is to identify what our habits are and adapt the space to fit our tendencies.
In the case of the front hallway, that means lots of places to put our crap. I got to work over the long weekend.
We already had a good place to put our coats and shoes, so that didn’t need to change. The coat hooks are from IKEA, and the shoe racks (stackable!) are from The Container Store.
The first order of business was a place to put all of the purses that accumulate near the door. In a perfect world I would keep most of them in my closet and just take them out as needed, but my closet is two floors up and that’s just not going to happen. And it’s not just purses. It’s shopping bags too. I own a thousand of them, and yet I rarely remember to take them with me. Having them near the door helps.
I bought two more sets of those awesome IKEA hooks that are in my coat closet. I love the way they look, I love the cost, and they’re super easy to hang (two screws). I also needed a very narrow shelf to fit between the wall and the heating pipe. IKEA had lots of options.
Next, I wanted some kind of bench or chair for putting shoes on. I hate it when people grab their shoes and take them into my living room to put them on, but the only other option I was providing for them was sitting on the stairs. Again, IKEA had lots of great options. I chose this bench, and will be making a pretty cushion for it later this week (I’m waiting for the upholstery foam to get here – hurry up Amazon!).
The print above the bench I purchased from my talented friend Martin Mazorra. I have a million IKEA frames, but none of them had matting that was the right size (most IKEA frames are measured in centimeters, not inches, which can make for weird sizes). If you find yourself running into this problem, you should totally invest in a mat cutter. I can’t claim I use it all that often, but when I need it, I’m always so thrilled that I have it. It’s really easy to use.
The other side of our entry hallway has an IKEA shelf on its side. We’ve had that for a while, but it’s a constant battle not to fill it with other stuff. A couple times a year I have to go through and weed out things that aren’t related to getting out the door. Small umbrellas, sunscreen, Frisbees, balls, and other outdoor items go in that big basket. Omer and I each have a small basket. And we keep a mosquito racket near the door – it’s easiest to kill them right as they come in.
Each member of the family has a cubby on the bottom for bags or backpacks, and a pull-out cube for other stuff – gloves and hats, exercise stuff, smaller bags, etc.
There’s also supposed to be a mirror on that side of the hallway, but I’ve gone to IKEA twice now when it was supposed to be in stock, and it hasn’t been there either time. Hopefully it will come in some day, because that wall is looking very empty. I’m also still looking for a key/mail rack that I like. And the entire hallway needs a paint job (and the entire downstairs still needs baseboards!). But other than that, I feel like the hallway is finished, and I’m really happy with it!