The foyer is not simply a meet-and-greet room from which guests are ushered upon arrival. Treat it like the room it is – the first glimpse of your home décor style– and customize it to fit your life

Sure, you can invest in a grandfather clock or a modern light fixture to serve as anchors in a foyer.

Then again, a fresh coat of paint alone can transform an entryway.

Light colors will enlarge tiny spaces, while dark colors create drama.

Don't ignore big, bright colors that can make a special statement, suggests Anna Kasabian, author of “First Impressions: Fresh Look for Entryways, Hallways and Foyers” (Quarry Books, 2002).

In her book, she encourages readers to determine first whether they want to create entryways with a formal or casual look. A formal entrance may feature walls covered with softer palettes like milk white, gold or silver that may better complement rich fabrics.

Casual foyers tend to reflect colors seen in nature along with pastels. The key, Kasabian adds, is figuring out what kinds of mood a lighter or darker palette may create.

No need to settle on a single color. If you stick to warm palettes, for instance, paint one wall a warm yellow. Then surround it with white walls and use yellow trim to pull it all together, she adds.

Kasabian's favorite color is a Benjamin Moore shade of white that she describes as the color of milk or whipped cream – but it’s not snow white and it's not cream, she clarifies.

Once on the wall, everything around it “pops”, she says, and the details show through, perfectly.

”What I love about it is that it is not the pure visual focus, rather it works as the canvas for whatever you choose to put there; I can't think of anything that wouldn't look well on that – from antique wood picture frames to brass lanterns to wall hangings,” Kasabian adds.

Before settling on a color, she prefers to give it a whirl first. Use poster boards for paint trials and display them in the entryways for a few days, she says.

A myriad of techniques, such as sponging, spattering and marbling, also add texture and life to a wall.

Don't forget about the ceiling, a place of great potential. Treat it as a canvas, and with the help of a faux painter, let your imagination run wild.

CTW Features