11 Things to Keep by the Front Door

When it comes to decorating and organizing, the foyer is often the last place homeowners think to touch. In far too many homes, it’s just a bleak portal for passing in and out of the house without a second glance. And that’s a shame, because the entryway is a prime piece of real estate and, when considered properly, can help make your day a little easier. The key is in keeping certain essentials by the front door where you won’t overlook them on your way out, or establishing an assigned place for everyday items. Here are 11 items that deserve a spot near your front door.

  1. Reusable Grocery Bags

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    Reusable Grocery Bags

    We’ve all been there: You reach the checkout with a cart full of groceries, only to realize you once again forgot your reusable bags at home. The solution? Install a hook near your front door to hold the grocery bags, and you won’t be able to forget to take them with you.

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  2. Dog Walking Supplies

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    Dog Walking Supplies

    Ugh. You’re walking the pup, but when he takes care of business, you don’t have a bag to scoop it up. Solve the problem by keeping a small basket near the entry to hold his leash, harness, dog waste bags, and any other essentials for his daily walks.

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  3. Flashlight

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    Flashlight

    When emergency strikes, or the power goes out, you don’t want to be left in the dark any longer than necessary. Unfortunately, for many of us that means scrambling around in the dark trying to find a flashlight. It’s a good idea to stash a few flashlights throughout your home: one by the front door, one in your bedroom nightstand, one in the kitchen, and one in the bathroom. That way, you’ll know exactly where to find them when needed.

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  4. Chalkboard or Dry Erase Board

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    Chalkboard or Dry Erase Board

    Today’s busy families have full—and often competing—schedules. Hang a chalkboard or dry erase board near your front door, and teach your family members to jot down the time and place of any deviations from the norm, such as sports practice, doctor appointments, work meetings, or other schedule-busters. At glance, you’ll know who needs to be picked up, who will be late for dinner, and who should be home soon.

    Related: 10 Essentials for an Organized Entryway

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  5. Library Books

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    Library Books

    Whether you prefer the latest bestselling thrillers, the classics, or cookbooks, checking books out from the library is a pleasure that not only benefits your mind, it also benefits your bank account. However, forgetting to return those books on time sours the experience and gains you a fine. Keep track of your library books with a designated basket in the foyer. Whenever you finish a book, drop it into the basket where it will jog your memory each time you go in or out the door.

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  6. Water Bottle

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    Water Bottle

    Drinking water throughout the day has numerous benefits: You’ll feel more alert and energetic, your skin will look younger, you’ll be less inclined to drink soda or overeat, and your digestive system will function better. But forget about paying for water on the go, searching in vain for a drinking fountain, or cluttering landfills with empty plastic water bottles. Instead, install a cup holder near your front door, and set a filled reusable water bottle in it before going to bed. That way, you won’t forget it when heading out in the morning, and you’ll have water at hand whenever you need a sip.

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  7. Fresh Flowers or a Houseplant

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    Fresh Flowers or a Houseplant

    The sight of living greenery or lovely flowers boosts your mood and serves as a warm welcome each time you enter your front door. If your entryway is large enough, decorate it with a small console table—most have a drawer that’s the perfect spot for keys and wallet—and set a pretty vase filled with flowers or an easy-to-grow houseplant on top.

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  8. Doormat

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    Doormat

    You probably have a doormat outside your front door, but you also need one on the inside. By walking over two doormats every time you go through the entryway, you cut way down on the dust, mud, leaves, and other outdoor debris that otherwise would find its way into your home via the bottoms of your shoes. Plus, it’s an easy, inexpensive way to add a pop of personality to your foyer.

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  9. Mirror

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    Mirror

    You don’t have to be vain to want to be sure you’re looking your best before leaving the house for the day. Hanging a decorative mirror in the foyer not only gives you a final peek at your appearance, it also lends a tiny entryway the illusion of space, bounces light around the room, and provides a fashionable focal point.

    Related: 18 Inviting Entryways We Love

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  10. Umbrella Stand

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    Umbrella Stand

    Whether you live in an area that receives rain a few days per week or a few days per year, when you come home with a dripping umbrella, you need somewhere to store it. An umbrella stand is a foyer accessory that not only serves a practical purpose, but can also add a splash of style to the front hall. If you really want to make the most of the space, choose an umbrella stand and coat rack combo, and you’ll always be ready for inclement weather.

    Related: 7 Things Every Entryway Needs

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  11. Slippers

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    Slippers

    If you follow a “no shoes indoors” policy, you probably slip into a pair of indoor-only slippers upon arriving home. Make the shoe exchange an easy one by furnishing the foyer with a bench with shoe cubby storage. Now you—and your guests—have somewhere to sit while taking off shoes or putting them back on, and a convenient spot to store them while relaxing at home.

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  12. See the House of the Week

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    Discover and admire beautiful and innovative home architecture, from grand Victorians to quaint cabins and all the styles in between. Take a look at the latest images and inspiration!