8 things people with organized small entryways never do

Keep your small entryway pleasant and clutter-free

Entryway with red rug and console table
(Image credit: Article)

It's important to know the things people with organized small entryways never do when guests enter their home. Since a small entryway doesn't have a lot of space, it can be difficult to find a place to put everything you need, which can lead to clutter and disorganization.

Not to mention, a small entryway is often a high-traffic area, especially if you often host guests in your home or have pets, which makes it difficult to keep it clean.

But worry not. We've picked the brains of two professional organizers who shared the things you should avoid when you want an organized, well-decorated small entryway in your 1-bedroom or studio apartment.

Things people with organized small entryways never do

Having a small entryway could be a headache, especially if you don't know how to organize it. Thankfully we spoke to some design experts to find plenty of small entryway storage ideas to make the most of your space.

1. Too much furniture

Small white entryway

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Having too much furniture will make a small entryway feel small, overwhelming, and cluttered. Professional Organizer and Interior Designer Nicola Rodriguez advises that your small hallway should only consist of one piece of furniture for storage or display purposes. “Soft lighting or a floor runner are perfect,” she said.

This non-slip area design runner from Wayfair is functional and chic, giving your small entryway a facelift without taking up a lot of space, and saving your floors from dirt, scratches, and scuffs.

small entryway expert
Nicola Rodriguez

Nicola Rodriguez has been decluttering, reorganizing, maintaining, and housekeeping homes for over 20 years. She's also a professional Christmas decorator.

2. Shoe baskets lying around

Entryway Bench With Shoe Storage

(Image credit: Amazon)

Using appropriate shoe storage for small entryways is important for the overall look and feel of the space. “A basket for shoes is a no-no!” said Rodriguez. “Not only does the smell of feet hit your nostrils when the door is open, but it's unsightly too.”

Rodriguez always suggests a shoe organizer in the form of a cabinet if you don’t have storage under your stairs or a boot room: a dedicated space in your house that is used as a cloakroom. 

This entryway bench with shoe storage from Amazon is perfect for your small entrance as it's compact size takes us less square footage, making your space look less cluttered.

3. Keeping out of season items

Small neutral entryway with storage

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Spare some thought to the items hanging around your entryway and declutter this small space. Hanging coats on a rack also creates a vertical mess at eye level in your small hallway. 

Rodriguez suggests vacuuming your heavy coats once the season is over and putting them away in a designated storage area. These durable and reusable vacuum storage bags from Amazon will save you space!

4. Too much wall art

Round black framed mirror with rope handle on neutral wall

(Image credit: Wayfair)

A few pieces may look nice, but too many pieces of cheap wall art will actually make your small entryway look more cluttered. 

“Keep the wall art to a minimum,” said Rodriguez. “I always suggest my clients hang a large mirror in their hallway, as this not only gives the illusion of more space by reflection but can also bounce around more light if placed opposite a window.”

This round metal wall mirror from Wayfair is just the ticket for doing a final look check before heading out of the door, whilst simultaneously opening up your small entryway a bit.

5. Keys behind doors

Front entryway with table and wall hooks

(Image credit: Target)

Keeping things our sight is a great way to reduce clutter in a small apartment entryway. Rodriguez advises hanging a key box in your hallway to not only keeping them organized, but away from the door and shoring up your security.

This steel key box from Wayfair will do the trick! “Never hang your keys on the backs of doors,” says Rodriguez.

6. Leaving mail and other papers around

Mounted hanging folders on wall

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Paper clutter leads to unruly piles that never go away — it can even affect your small entryway Feng Shui.

“When working with clients, we create a designated paper zone in an area where there is more space, like the kitchen or home office,” said Professional Organizer and Co-Founder of The Thoughtful Home, Rose Pulver. "It’s also important to file papers right away if you want to minimize clutter.”

If you must store incoming papers in the entryway, Pulver recommends investing in some mounted hanging folders like this organizer from Wayfair.

Professional Organizer
Rose Pulver

Originally a California girl, Rose brings a combination of beach-casual, modern style paired with an East Coast work ethic to all of her projects. She lives in Howard County, Maryland with her husband, three children, and two dogs.

7. Leaving bags on the floor

An entryway with a mirror, shelf, basket, and a chair

(Image credit: Garden Trading)

People often return from a shopping trip with dozens of bags, and can end up leaving nonperishable items sitting in the entryway for weeks. If you have any overstock items you store in another area of the house, such as a closet or basement, it’s important you put those items away immediately too. 

By simply practicing putting everything away as soon as you return from the store, you’ll create a useful habit you're more likely to keep up over time. 

“We've seen many homes with piles of reusable bags in the entryway,” said Pulver. “Instead, we suggest keeping them in the car or hanging on a hook in one of your closets for easy access. That way you can grab and go as you’re leaving the house.”

You could also invest in this hook hanger by Yamazak from Wayfair to neatly hang all of your reusable grocery bags.

8. Leaving kit in the entryway

A green entryway with wooden stairs, a coat rack, and wall art

(Image credit: Dunelm)

It's easy to leave strollers or workout gear in the entryway when you get home, but it can quickly become an obstacle in a rush. To avoid this, Pulver suggests storing your gear in a hall closet or, if possible, the garage. 

This hanger from The Home Depot allows you to store your stroller on the back of a door, which is a great option if you’re low on space. 

“Keeping your baby gear folded and out of sight can create a calm and organized atmosphere for your home, and make it easier to prepare for your next outing,” she said.


What is the best way to organize your shoes when it comes to a small entryway?

Rodriguez recommends having every pair of shoes in individual storage bins with labels. This is a great way of not only storing them but also knowing exactly what you have and where they are.

How can I make my small entryway look more inviting?

You could make your small entryway look more inviting by incorporating a rug as it’ll add color and warmth. Choose a rug that is small enough to fit in the space and make sure you choose one that is a neutral color so it won’t clash with your existing décor. 

You could also place a vase of flowers, as this detail could add a touch of nature to a small entryway. Choose a vase that is small and simple, and make sure the flowers are fresh and in season. Last but not least, light a candle to add a warm and inviting touch to your small entryway.

Keeping a small entryway organized is all about making the most of the space you have. By avoiding these small space design mistakes, you can create an area that is both functional and inviting. Not to mention, the sense of calm and peace that'll sweep over you whenever walking into your one-bedroom or studio apartment.

Aida M. Toro
Freelance Writer

About Me:

Hello! My name is Aida M. Toro and I am a freelance writer that loves cultivating stories about amazing people, fashion, interiors, art, and food. I currently write for Harper’s Bazaar Vietnam, The House Magazine, Hobnob Magazine, The C-Word, and Real Homes. I live in West New York, New Jersey, which is literally a 10-minute ferry ride or 20-minute bus ride away from New York City. Although I was born and raised in West New York, I consider NYC my home, as I believe it to be the place where all dreams come to fruition, and of course, spend most of my time in. When I’m not writing, I love perusing the city streets and taking snaps with my iPhone of street art along with random things, scoping out new restaurants as well as their spaces, shopping at some of my favorite stores, spending time with family and friends, walking my cockapoodle Benji, and working out at Lifetime or DOGPOUND, which are some of the top fitness spaces in Manhattan and overall the U.S.