It's traditional for entryways to have a single, bright overhead light source that illuminates the whole space. If you live in an apartment complex, it's usually a generic, industrial fixture hung above the door as you enter—not the most attractive option. Here are some alternate options for an apartment or house that will enhance your personal décor to subtly bring more attention to your design.
Sconces are a great option if you have electrical sources already in place on the wall. If not, no need to start drilling through the wall! IKEA sells inexpensive wall-mounted sconces that you can easily plug into an outlet (and cord covers can hide unsightly electrical dangles).
Choosing a sconce that expresses your home's design style is important, so pay attention to shape, metal color and design. The important question with sconces is: "What direction is my light source going to be pointing?" If the sconce shoots up, it will cast more general light; if it shoots down or to the sides, you'll get more directed light.
Price range: $25 to $75
Chandeliers are the best way to bring instant drama to a hallway entry. I am a big fan of entry chandeliers, as they come in any design style and can occupy a central place in a design.
Scale and size is really important when choosing a chandelier, as it can easily overpower an entry if it is too big or too ornate. In my opinion, dimmers are a must if you're considering a chandelier.
Price range: $50 to $150
Cheap, easy and highly functional, track lighting is a good option for entryways, especially if you have a hallway with art or shelves full of personalized display items. You can pin the spotlight on an object and give your entry a gallery feel. The beauty of track lighting is the ability to control the light heads to point in any direction and to control the amount of distinct sources you can have on the ceiling.
Price range: $30 to $60, depending on length
Attached Art Lighting
A sleeker, less expensive way to illuminate your artwork in the entry is with clamp-on LED art lights (IKEA is one place that sells them). These fairly inexpensive light sources are specifically made for illuminating your artwork and can be clamped directly to a frame or attached to the wall. A series of these lights over your framed art can really bring a dramatic, evening lighting effect.
Price range: $20 to $40
Standing Floor and Task Lamps
Traditionally used in other parts of the home, these two options can be a nice accompaniment to an entry vignette. If you have a narrow console, a task light is classy and useful. If a single chair and umbrella caddy are paired in your entry, try a third element like a standing floor lamp to complete your grouping. Pay attention to lamp shade textures, colors and transparency to pull together your cohesive design or theme.
Price range: $15 to $50
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