A spectacular gateway to beauty

A spectacular gateway to beauty

A spectacular gateway to beauty

Have you ever walked into someone’s home and instantly felt energised or absolutely comfortable? It’s the very entrance to a place that makes an impression and leaves you with a feel-good or not-so-happy feeling, which continues to linger on for the rest of your time at that place.

Having said that, how many of us actually pay any attention to our hallways, entrance gates, corridors or doorways? What kind of impression does your home entrance cast over its guests? Here are some ideas to create the best way to welcome your guests:

First things first

It’s important to first fix up all broken doors, windows, creaking gates, hanging electric wires, chipped off paints and cracked stairs. These are both cosmetic and structural fixes.

Once you’re done with these, you can think of moving to the beauty and art part of the project. There’s no point decorating a stairway or a hallway with paintings or artefacts if it is not structurally sound.

“A lot of people ignore the very basic structural issues and jump to decorating the place. But, if the infrastructure is weak, the decor will fall off very soon,” says Gyati Kathuria, a Delhi-based interior designer.

Chinese wisdom

The Chinese believe that good energy or chi is absolutely necessary at your home entrance as the chi enters through the main door and nourishes the entire abode. Therefore, it’s important to create a strong, welcoming “landing space” for this energy. A Buddha painting, a console table with an earthy vase and colourful flowers, or a classic lamp that illuminates the hallway are some options.

They all do the same work – create a peaceful, serene environment. If space is limited, opt for a good quality main entry rug with vibrant colours or beautiful art and a strong wall colour that acts as the focal point. Any hanging wires, stored furniture or even old newspapers coming in the focal area can obstruct the flow of positive chi or good energy. Often we see, golden dragons, cherry blossoms or intricate Buddha paintings adorning Chinese homes or offices. This is to make the place tranquil.

Nature nurtures

Once you’re done with basic structural amendments, shift focus towards decorating the area. One of the most cost-effective, easy and beautiful ways to bring life to any dull space is to introduce greens to it. Place a big pot with bonsai palm, bamboo, jade, rubber plant or a split-leaf philodendron at the entrance to add warmth and some colour.

Plants are good at disguising any harsh lines, slopes, ceilings and corners. However, also keep in mind that these house plants kept at the very entrance of your home need special care.

Withered plants are not a good sight and even emit negative energy, says the science of Feng Shui. Declining bouquets  should also be discarded. Thorny plants can be avoided at the entrance. These days, the concept of mini gardens is quite popular. You can get varied species of plants in small pots and containers and it requires minimal maintenance too.

Himanshi Gupta, a nature lover who promotes such eco-friendly solutions through her store Ricco in Delhi says, “Miniature gardens need very little water spraying on a weekly basis, and the plants stay healthy for many years. This can be a perfect solution to homes where space is a constraint.”

These gardens can be planted in interesting containers like wine glasses, round pots and hanging pots. These beauties add to the quality of air in the room. Water bodies create a cool and soothing effect also. Many organisations and even palaces have water bodies right at the entrance.

Installing small fountains or wind mills in the front garden creates a very nurturing environment. If guests have to move through a lawn to enter your home, ensure that the lawn is clean and always blooming with greenery and energy.

Theme for a dream

It’s wonderful to have a theme for a room or a lobby. Make it personal, appealing or artistic, it’s up to you. The best thing about entrance lobbies is that it provides space for hanging pictures and frames. If it’s a long narrow passage, have a couple of big frames on the walls. You can also have family portraits on the wall. Family pictures will warmly welcome members when they get back home from work.

Potted plants too add life to the otherwise boring corridor. Mirrors are another great option to add a sense of space and vastness. A console table with a mirror on the wall above looks elegant. A big Ganesha idol can be placed at the entrance.

Look for a stone carved one or dark wooden ones for added charm. You can also paint the entrance to add mood and character to the space, especially if the passage from the entrance to the living room is quite long. Many households prefer to remove shoes before they enter the main area. Look for chic shoe racks that conceal all the footwear.

A traditional hat, umbrella and coat stand too can be a part of your entrance. Look for antique ones or auctioned products with a Victorian era look and feel. A well-lit, aromatic entrance immediately uplifts the moods of the guests.

These may be small points, but they go a long way in creating a positive aura, so do keep them in mind.

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