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Create Design PIZZAZ…Ask Yourself These Questions:


Is your front entry a dud?

  • Are the plantings out of control and hiding the windows and doors?  Start anew!  With many new cultivars available, add color and plant in masses for an updated look with less maintenance.
  • Is the landing too confining to greet guests?  Increase the size with a spacious and inviting outdoor foyer.  Make it large enough to add a bench for a sitting area.

Does your front walkway lack spunk? 

  • Create a larger, inviting landing at the driveway or city walkway. 
  • Install a column or architectural element matching the house for a focal point or to anchor or frame the entryway.
  • Widen the walkway by adding a course of brick along the sides or replace it with brick or pavers that compliment the colors of your house.

    Adding a larger outdoor foyer with a brick inset and a sitting area provides adequate room for greeting visitors. A round brick planter adds a focal interest to the entrance.












Does your house have an interesting feature like an archway or window detail?

  • Add a classy element and repeat the shape in a brick inset or in the outline of a planting bed.

Has your front stoop passed its prime, giving a poor impression of what might be behind?

  • Cap it by mortaring on brick or Bluestone if it’s structurally sound.  Replace it if it’s crumbling or settled, preventing water from entering the basement and injuries from people tripping and falling.

    A curved stoop is reconstructed and capped with Bluestone in a shape that mimics the shape of the front door and windows. A large landing at the driveway welcomes visitors.












Does nighttime steal away your hospitality?

  • Bring your home and landscaping to life with a low voltage lighting system.  Up lighting a tree can create a visual sculpture or accent your façade.  Path lights create safety and security.

Could your front door be a focal point?

  • The front door sets the tone for the whole house.  Replace it with a door with more architectural character.
  • Painting the door a vibrant color makes it pop and catches the eye.

    The sidewalk is widened by adding a course of brick to the sides. The materials of the stoop and sidewalk compliment the colors of the house.













The front entry is the most important feature of your house, especially if you are trying to sell it.  A well designed and maintained front entry can raise your real estate value up to 20%.  It should give a good first impression, easily lead visitors to the entrance to your home, and compliment your house.  Here are some other tips to create fabulous front entries.                                                  


Use retaining walls and terrace them when there is a slope present.           

– Create a larger landing area at the entrance for people to congregate. Sitting areas can be incorporated in front entryways.

– Walkways should be 4 feet or wider and flare at the driveway and stoop.  They should be a direct, non-confusing path from the driveway to the front door.

– Masonry columns can frame an entryway or act as a focal point.

– Use the colors of the hardscape to compliment the colors of the brick, siding, or shingles of the house.


– Plants can be focal points from inside and outside your house; they should frame the house and focus attention to the entrance.

– Plant in masses, but don’t overdue it.  Keep it simple.

– Install plants to provide shade and privacy, repeating colors, shapes and textures.

– Place containers with flowers or a specimen plant to help focalize or frame the entrance.

 Other Elements

– The design of a front entryway should be in balance and in scale with the house. It should compliment the house by taking forms from the house, like arches and window shapes, and repeating those shapes in the landscape.

– Low voltage landscape lighting provides safety, helps lead to the entrance of the home and highlights focal points.

– Painting the front door a contrasting color that compliments the house helps draw the eye toward the entrance.

Use retaining walls and terrace them with plantings when there is a slope present.

Use masonry columns and planters to help frame an entryway

Use focal points, like this Ginkgo tree, to draw the eye to the front entrance.  Pull architectural shapes from the house and incorporate them into the lanscape.  In this picture, the square Bluestone mimic the shape of the windows.

Wandsnider Landscape Architects

We strive to create beautiful outdoor environments for your enjoyment. Inviting livable spaces that capture your vision and add value to your home.


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