Family Room "Foyer"

by | Feb 25, 2014 | Family Room, My House | 48 comments

Now that we’re getting the trim done in the family room, I feel motivated to finish off the room a bit more.  We’ve had blank walls and temporary pieces of furniture in there for a while.  As soon as the paint was dry, I moved a cane chair against the wall and a flat willow basket for shoes.  I also hung an antique oil painting on the wainscoting.  It made the area feel less like a blank wall and more like an intentional foyer space for the side door.






 But then we had a warm, sunny day on Sunday and, well 40’s felt pretty warm, so the Spring nesting thing started to bubble up and I got the urge to move furniture.  I’ve been thinking for a while about moving my vanity into the family room to use as my desk.  I stopped using my vanity after we finished our master bathroom.  The lighting is so much better in there, I found I was carrying my makeup, hair dryer, straightening iron, etc. in there with me every morning.  I use my desk every day, which was a gate-leg table, so it made sense to make the swap.


 (Yeah, I need a shade for that lamp.)  So, this displaced the gate leg table, which I scooted out of the way as I set up the desk.  As I walked into the master bedroom, I realized the table looked pretty good against the wall.  Hmmm…  So, I moved it there.


 The chair was nice, but the table is perfect.  It makes the space look finished and the profile of the table is such that it works against the wall, even with the baseboard heaters, which makes furniture stick out from the wall about 3-4″.  Because of the heaters, I didn’t think a piece would work there, but this one does.


I kept the accessories simple with some ironstone, antique books and a boxwood topiary.





And I added the willow basket, from Hobby Lobby, under the table to catch shoes or display pretty boots.  Whichever.


Seeing a room evolve is so exciting to me.  I love the process and I love discovering new uses and places for things I have had for a long time.  I can get an entirely new look without having to buy anything new.

Of course, the problem with that is now it’s thrown things off a bit on one side of the master bedroom, but that room has always been a “problem child” in this house!  I’m sure one day I’ll slide something in there and it will be perfect.  Until then, I’ll just keep tweaking.


  1. Jeanine C.

    The table looks fantastic…just what that space needed to make it feel like an entry! Instead, I have this issue with my front door area, although I have a longer space. The ceiling slopes high….really high. I have a trumeau mirror…now just to find the right sideboard/table/dresser! I’ve been hunting for months now 🙁 with no success. There is really nothing I can take from another room that will work in that space either. Oh well, it will happen when I least expect it :).

    Enjoy the day. Surely spring is around the corner. At least it is inside your home! 🙂

  2. Tara

    Very nice! I love a quick and easy fix that looks so nice like this and makes you feel like you accomplished so much! Wish everything were this easy! You did good girl!

  3. Marlene

    Looks great! I love the walls.

  4. kristin

    We just (finally!) finished our board and batten in our entryway and upstairs hall. The top painting needed to be done from a project that started on Thanksgiving break. I have a photo to hang and my husband said “too high” when I put it above the trim. I told him you can hang it ON the mouldings which he thought I was crazy (so show him the picture tonight…). I loved the look of the chair but the table looks great too. Our entry has only open doorways to other rooms and two coat closets–not an inch for a table or chair. OK…there is a corner in which I placed a round rattan basket/table with lid from BD. I took the looong LR and used the unused end and extended the “entry” into there. With an indoor/outdoor wicker loveseat to sit and put shoes on (Pier One) and a foyer table from WM painted in your linen it gives us an entryway look of sorts although not IN the entry way AND fills a once before completely empty space. I LOVE the fact that you centered your table vignette. I always feel the need to start at the ends and work in–this has been the toughest part of “finishing” the house!

  5. martina

    LOVE the way that whole space looks!!

  6. beck campbell

    Love the stained wood of the table (and the dresser/desk!). Sometimes we are too quick to slap paint on a piece but this really looks rich and beautiful against the white wall trim!
    I want desperately to do something with my “entry” but it is tiny and the stairs are right there…I keep thinking I will do a wall feature, but every time I make a move, I freeze…so I just give up. Again, inspiration to “figure it out!” Thanks!

  7. Bobetta

    Lovely! The vanity table is perfect there. You have such a great eye!

  8. antiquechase

    I love it in the entry and the painting is wonderful there too!!

  9. Sally Hanselman

    I like the oil painting. I want it!

  10. Ronda

    Love it! Don’t know about your house, but at my house, that lovely table with its quaint little vignette would soon be piled with whatever just came through the door…mail, keys, school books, and on and on and on!!

  11. louise

    Love it. Its really simple and pretty. I like that there is no height on the table. That two tall lamps or candle sticks either end of the table would look impractical right there, and that look is very “expected” anyway. I like the simplicity and “readiness” (or somewhat undecoratedness) of it.

  12. Talitha

    Thank you for this post! Now that I’m homeschooling two kids, I’ve been thinking, thinking, thinking about every possible way I can rearrange our furniture. Your post reminded me to be courageous and just try things!! Let’s move things around!

  13. Brittany

    What is the color of the little end table on picture #4? Love it! Would like to finish a piece I have in that color

  14. Nanci Neenan


  15. kari

    I love the A-ha moment, when something you have had for years bubbles up from your subconscious to be used in a new way! That’s my favorite, b/c no money was spent and yet, it feels fresh and new. So, no guilt either. Love the table there. It makes perfect sense to scoot the shoe basket underneath out of the way. A purposeful spot for keys and shoes. LOVE!

  16. Jelena

    Beautiful! Now, you just need some kind of pretty basket on that entryway table to catch the keys and other odds and ends that people usually need by the entry/side door.

  17. Barbara

    I am so glad you finished with the table. The painting is beautiful but looked lost hanging there all alone. I knew you would realize it. Perfection!!!!

  18. Jeanette @ Creating a Life

    I just tweaked our foyer area with pieces I already had, too! I love what you did in your space! The dark table against the newly trimmed white wall looks SO pretty and I love the basket for boots/shoes, too. I always appreciate your beautiful photography!


  19. Beth

    Love the table and the look, too. In the photo I see an electrical outlet (above boots) to plug in a sweet lamp. Could give wonderful soft lighting & ambiance to the setting, day & night. Enjoying your book ‘Inspired You” & your blog.

  20. Becky

    It looks great. Both pieces. The table looks like it was meant to be there. Don’t you just love “shopping” in your own home? Also, I’m really enjoying the milk paint blog. Very inspiring. Now if the weather would just cooperate so I could get out in my garage and start some projects!

  21. Laurie

    The table looks great there! It could also hold a lamp….although that probably means putting in another outlet.

  22. Jessica @ Dear Emmeline

    So pretty! That painting is amazing and you guys are doing a fabulous job on the molding. Gorgeous!

  23. Linda Weeks

    You are so right! I liked the first arrangement just fine, but your little table with the basket underneath is spot on!


    I would love to change things around. I did when my kids were little! We live in a space that has limited wall space right now.


      It is 61 here today so I got to weed the flower beds and mow! I wanted to mention the desk details are really cute, I notice it is missing knobs, are we in for a paint treatment?

  25. Kellene

    Yep…the table looks better! Love it!

  26. norette

    I love this, especially the painting!

  27. Cristina

    Love it!!! It looks perfect!!

  28. Tina

    I love the simplicity of the looks so peaceful and calm. Just curious…in looking back thru lots of previous posts, I notice there is rarely any kind of lighting shown? Do you just use overhead lighting or do lamps detract from the photographs??

    • Miss Mustard Seed

      I got rid of all of the lamps in our living spaces when I had two babies 19 months apart. I just didn’t want to worry about cords. I just prefer overhead lighting as well.

      • Tara

        Prob a good thing, as I just tripped over the cord of my mama’s white porcelain lamp she bought in Germany. It was my very favorite! I walked into the cord, and smash!!!! 🙁

      • Tina

        You must have lots better eyesight than I do…seems the older I get, the more light I need! 🙂

  29. Yuko @ northfield gate

    I love any of those Foyer Vignette (the best part is they seem so functional), but I must admit the first two pictures took my breath away! – They reminded me of the work of Darryl Carter (I admire his work!) or someone with that type of minimalistic aesthetics. It’s so much fun to see your design evolving and I learn so much from you! Thank you Marian for sharing! xo

    • Leasa

      I agree. Love, love the 1st two pics! So calming and beautiful in its simplicity .

      • Yuko @ northfield gate

        Yes, Leasa! It’s so hard to make something beautiful while keeping it simple, and I think Marian nailed it in the first vignette! oxox

  30. Jill

    Love the molding and tweaking you’ve done! Did you finally get all of your new curtains? They look lovely too!

  31. Mary Stevens

    The table looks darling…like it so much better than the chair! Another great job!

  32. Sally

    I love that the table and boots are in a similar color range, they look really well together…before getting to the part of the blog post where you show the table, I was thinking, I’d put a wall mounted shelf there, but the table is so much better…

  33. Rhonda

    The gate leg table works beautifully in that spot! I love it, too, when all things work together!

  34. Linda

    Table is perfect, nice decor, love love the wall, good job.
    Can you please let us know more about your sewing machine, how is it working out for you, I want to buy one soooooooo expensive. God Bess you and your family you are a charm, special lady and so much appreciate your blog and info. keep it up. a big fan. how is your son doing. Love Linda from the OC

  35. Ginger

    Love it!! Love the desk under the window and the table at the foyer!

  36. Elaine

    Once again you nailed it…I love the basket and shoes under the table — it really is such a sweet and welcoming spot as an entry.

  37. Ellie

    Love the new look and function! My husband hates it when tweak the furniture (or move entire rooms around) but once he gets used to it he usually likes it better. Keep tweaking!

  38. MaryS

    Wow!! It looks wonderful. Are you for rent for a day or so???

  39. karen

    ooh, I REALLLLY hope there will be a tutorial up for the board and batten. I have a living room very similar to yours (that has driven me absolutely CRAZY since we moved in a year ago) that I have been wanting to board and batten for the longest time now…but I just couldn’t put my finger on what type would be appropriate for the space. Yours is perfect! Staying tuned in hopes!

  40. Cindy

    Oh yeah… the table is perfect there! It totally grounds the space and looks so cute with the basket of boots under it. It’s so fun when you move furniture around and create a perfect spot like that with stuff you already have!


  41. Adrienne

    Love the foyer, and your tufted coffee “table.”

  42. shaunna

    absolute perfection!!!! 🙂


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…


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