I think the hardest “room” of the house to decorate is the entryway. The house that we live in now has an actual entryway (our old house opened up straight into the living room) and it was very plain and boring. Since I am not able to paint the walls (stupid renting), I had to come up with a way to dress it up. Unfortunately, there are not any “before” pictures because I was so excited to get this project going that I forgot. But its pretty easy to imagine… a two-tiered natural wood colored laminate shoe cubby against beige walls. Boring, boring, and more boring. The shoe cubby was functional (sort of). It held our shoes but I did not like getting down on our knees to peer into the cubby to search for shoes. Not very ideal.
I wanted a simple long table about waist-height but was not going to pay the price that most stores want. I finally found a thrift store that had what I was looking for and for a good price.
The table was pretty beat up with glitter glue and various kid craft remnants all over the top. The top was also made out of a different material other than wood so I was not sure how the refinishing would go.
Here is what I did:
I hand sanded the whole thing with 60 grit sandpaper. I was amazed at how easily all the gunk came off the top. I then sanded it with very fine sand paper (not sure what grit it was). You can sort of see in this picture that the top is a different material.
I filled all the screw holes and divots with wood filler, let it dry, and sanded those areas. I could not get them completely flat but that is ok because I wanted it to look a little rustic.
I painted it with 2 coats of Valspar White Paint and Primer in One (semi-gloss) finish, let it dry and now it lives in my entryway and looks so much better than the little shoe cubby we had before.
The baskets underneath the table were bought at Michael’s for 40% off. I like the fact that they have a lid so we can just throw our shoes in and close the lid. It makes it very easy for my kids to put their shoes away. Even my 21 month old can do it. I say “shoes” and he goes straight for his basket to find his shoes. The lid is also attached like a hinge so it doesn’t fall off. We use one basket for the kids’ shoes and one for the adult shoes. No more getting down on our hands and knees to search for shoes. We still have to bend a bit but it beats getting down on the floor.
The accessories on the table I scrounged from around the house. The glass bowl with the balls used to be on my mantle. The little key tray was a gift from my sister (its actually made of rolled magazines..very cool). The mirror used to be in our bedroom. I may hang it one day, I may not. I’m also debating on whether to put a few pictures on the table but I don’t want it to be too cluttered.
So there you go… a fabulous new entryway on the cheap!