Entry Table Decor – How to Style Step by Step Like a Pro

Everything you need to know to style your entry table decor like a professional decorator and create a welcoming entryway.

Ever since the accidental foyer/stairway redo last year and our lucky Facebook Marketplace entry table find, this is the first time I’ve done an actual “normal” entryway styling in this space.

Fall and Christmas didn’t count I guess. 😉 From January until now, I walked through this semi non-decorated foyer every day and felt totally uninspired by it.

So I finally decided I’d had enough of the blahs and am taking you through the process of how to decorate an entry table, if you’ve ever felt stumped on where to start styling your own home’s entrance space.

foyer with entry chest, mirror, and stairway gallery wall

What to Put on an Entry Table

  • A mirror or large piece of art / art grouping to hang on the wall above the table
  • A table lamp for a welcoming soft glow
  • Something organic like a vase of flowers or plant
  • A sentimental or meaningful item that brings you joy

Helpful Tips to Keep in Mind When Styling Entryway Decor

  • Less is more. Since this is the space that makes the first impression in your home, keep it as clutter-free as possible.
  • Bigger is better. If you can’t decide between having a few large decor items or many small decor items on a table, it’s best to pick just three large things to display. Lots of knick knacks can make a room feel small and messy.
  • Vary heights and textures for a layered look.
  • Group items into threes. (See more about the visual triangle in the step by step tutorial below.)
entry table decor in a foyer with gold mirror, lamp, vase of tulips, candle, and picture frames on a carved wood cabinet

How to Decorate an Entry Table Step by Step

Step 1 – Consider the Type of Your Entry Table You Need First

The size and shape of your space, your storage and function needs, and your personal style all play a factor into the piece of furniture you should choose for your entryway. But here is a guideline to help you decide.

  • Chest of Drawers or Cabinet – Great for small, narrow spaces yet provides some storage
  • Credenza or Sideboard – Great for larger entryways and provides maximum storage
  • Console Table – Great for making small entryway spaces feel more open but provides little to no storage

Always consider your personal decorating style after choosing the type of function you need from those three options to narrow down the right entry table for your space.

favorite entryway tables

Step 2 – Choose a Mirror or Large Piece or Wall Art / Art Grouping

Think about your personal style again and the style you chose for your entry table. When deciding on a mirror or piece of art to hang above the entry table, this is where you can start to blend styles.

If your entry table is rustic, choose a piece of art that is more edgy and modern to balance the rough lines with clean lines. If you want to echo ornate carvings in an entry chest with ornate details in a gold mirror, go for it!

In windowless spaces, mirrors work best for bouncing more light into the room.

If you’re unsure about size, the mirror or art piece should be two-thirds or three-quarters the width of the table below it. (Decorating rules are always made to be broken if you’re brave enough though.)

using a table lamp as an anchor for styling entry table decor

Step 3 – Place Your Largest Item on the Table as an Anchor

Whether its a large vase with statement-making branches or a tall, chunky lamp, use this one item is your starting point to style the entry table. Place it on one end of the table. In my case, I used this lamp.

flanking a table lamp with a vase of flowers

Step 4 – Flank the Anchor Piece with a Medium Sized Item

On the other side of the table opposite from your large anchor piece, place a medium sized item that will still add a little height but not more than your anchor.

I often like balancing lamps and a plant or vase of flowers as they play well against each other for adding light and an organic quality to entryways together.

adding a stack of books underneath a vase of flowers as risers for height in decorating a foyer table

Step 5 – Add Books as Risers

If you need to add a little height, books work well while also incorporating subjects you love. Our family enjoys picking up beautiful hardback picture books from our travels or about hobbies that interest us.

But of course I collect interior design books too because I love flipping through them for ideas, so I placed two here. Here are more coffee table books for all interests.

adding a candle on a foyer table

Step 6 – Add a Candle and/or Sentimental Items

I like to keep a candle in our foyer to light in the evenings or when we’re having company over so the house smells fresh and clean.

And this time, I just added a couple of small picture frames with family photos as our something sentimental. (Regan loves pointing to that picture on the left and saying, “Mama! Is that ME in your tummy?” Literally every day even though she knows the answer. 😉 It’s a thing with her.)

grouping entry table decor items into threes to create visual triangles

Step 7 – Group Entry Table Decor Items into Threes for Visual Triangles

If you didn’t visualize it in the photo above, can you see it now in the image below? When placing items on a table, try to think about placing a tall, medium, and short item together as a grouping to create a triangle shape.

Interior stylists use the Visual Triangle trick all the time as it creates natural symmetry that’s pleasing to the eye even when we only subconsciously understand that we’re seeing a triangle in decor groupings.

It totally works! And it totally helps me get “un-stuck” when I suddenly forget how to decorate an entry table in the middle of a styling brain block. I start making triangles and it fixes itself.

visual triangles in styling an entry table

What to Place Beside an Entry Table

We really have no storage space for anything besides the entryway table itself that we use beside the front door.

But if you have the space and need the added function you can incorporate an umbrella stand, lidded cube ottoman, large basket for tossing in shoes, or a coat rack stand.

foyer decor chest beside stairs with family gallery wall

How to Style Other Areas of the House

I keep thinking sometime later this year I’d love to paint that cherry stair railing black now that we have three different wood tones happening in here and maybe swap the balusters to a simple, straight style instead.

But we have two big projects starting up next week to wrangle first, so I’ll have time to think on this spot a little longer I guess. What do you think?


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  1. I definitely vote to paint the cherry railing black. I also would paint the cabinet. I can’t picture (in my head) that cabinet in black but I’ve seen some beautiful black furniture.

  2. Very timely post as I just bought a new entry table. Your entry table with the inset marble is gorgeous too!! We removed the carpet on our staircase last year and replaced with luxury vinyl plank. I would have loved real wood but we live in vegas and real wood splits and dries out unless you have a whole home humidifier which we do not. I have been thinking about adding a runner to my stairs and was wondering if you have thought about it as well or do you prefer your steps without it. Oak valley makes these step carpets that are an interesting concept. We painted our spindles white and banister black. The black banister would be gorgeous in your home too. Love your blog and all of your fresh ideas!

  3. I love your current ballisters! They are so elegant and the trim on the front of your entryway chest echoes their twists. Love it! Black might be sharp on the wood.

    1. Your entry is looking very nice. I agree with painting the railing and getting new straight Spindles. I would get that like you like it and then decide whether to paint the entry table or not. I love the way you decorated it and I love your mirror and I know whatever you choose to do it’s gonna be beautiful and I can’t wait to see it. You have and give so many wonderful ideas. Thank you. Keep up the beautiful work.