Styling an Entryway Bench

We’ve been in our home for almost two years now, which is almost impossible to believe! Our living room is the first room you see when you walk through the door, and we’ve played around with a lot of different arrangements for it, but I think we’ve finally found a system that works for us. The room is part entryway – that’s just inevitable – but that doesn’t mean that it has to look like a dumping ground! I added a sweet, cottage bench from Sauder furniture to the living room, styled it, and have an awesome entryway that doubles as extra seating at a party. Sauder invited me to be a part of their “Put Together” Design Challenge and Lookbook, and I jumped at the chance to style a piece of furniture to make it uniquely me!

When I picked this bench, I knew that on its own it might be a little too “sweet” for my urban cottage style – but that didn’t deter me, because it was the perfect size for this tiny wall between my front door and living room window, and I knew it was all about the styling.

Now, you guys know me. I am all about practical. I think vignettes and staged scenes are beautiful, but if it doesn’t work in a house with three kids 4 and under? It doesn’t work for me. So, here’s what works in our house:

Two pillows add color and soften the white bench. I love pattern, and I love mixing pattern. So a fun pillow with a bold print was a must for making this bench in my home. I added a wire basket with a burlap liner underneath the bench for shoes. Our family comes and goes through the garage door, so this basket is for shoes of visitors. It keeps things tidy when people are over, and adds a little bit of interest underneath the bench.

But the wall where I put the bench was still a little blank. It had previously housed my antique secretary desk, which I moved to the corner of the living room in place of the leaning bookshelf I’ve been trying to get rid of for years. I hung two house prints (to pay homage to our last house), and added our gas station five – to represent our family – underneath those framed prints. It’s the perfect mix of traditional and ecclectic, and now it blends perfectly into our “urban cottage”. I have my eyes on a custom portrait of our current house to add to this mix someday in the near future, too.

Here’s a peek at what the living room looked like before:

And here it is now. With very few changes – just a few additions and a lot of rearranging, this room feels lighter and airier to me.

It’s amazing how a few little tweaks can make a piece of furniture – or even an entire room – feel more “you”. Take a look at the Sauder Put Together Lookbook to see how other bloggers styled this bench and other great pieces of Sauder furniture.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sauder. The opinions and text are all mine.