Whether you’re looking to make your home more attractive for potential buyers or you simply want to create a space that says something about your personality, the hallway is always a good place to start. It’s usually the first place that visitors see when they come through the door and we all know first impressions count!
It’s also, of course, the place where friends and family come rushing in, coats and boots get discarded with reckless abandon, keys get tossed onto tables and mail piles up. Make the right design decisions, however, and you can create a space that not only looks great but has some very practical functionality.
The first thing you need to decide is what you want from your hallway. Do you want it to simply be functional or do you want to imbue it with some of your personality? The basic requirements for most homes, especially at this time of year is a decent mat for people to wipe their feet and somewhere to store shoes, coats, scarves and hats. For many people this is usually a space under the stairs but, if you don’t have an enclosed area like that, adding simple hooks to the walls can work just as well. Making the functionality requirement a feature of your hallway.
Light Or Dark Walls?
The next step is to consider colour combinations. The colour and décor that works will largely depend on the shape of the hallway. If you have one that is quite long and narrow, for instance, it can seem pretty dark, especially during the winter. You can open up the space more and make it welcoming by using light, warmer colours. Small hallways can be given extra emphasis by adding funky wallpapers with geometric or floral designs. Adding a mirror here and there can also create the illusion of light and space.
Storage Solutions for the Hallway
Storage in many British homes is an issue and the more you can find or manufacture the better. That could mean installing shelves in the space under the stairs or simply adding shelving or hooks to the walls. A lot, of course, depends on how big the area is – with narrow hallways you are going to be more constrained for space and there will be a limit on what you can achieve. Thankfully there are plenty of options to choose from, like this shoe locker and bench from A Place For Everything perfectly combines practical functionality and stylish design. Or you may want to consider a console table like this one from Roseland Furniture, add a bowl for keys and some fresh flowers and you already have a transformed hallway! There are a lot of hall storage ideas, the main thing to consider is practical space, if you add a table or a bench will you still be able to navigate the hallway with the weekly grocery shopping?
Mats and Flooring
Because it’s a heavy traffic area, you’ll want to make sure that your hallway flooring is robust enough to take the footfall but attractive enough to create just the right impact. Hardwood flooring and tiles are a good idea because they are easy to keep clean and look great. If you have a narrow space and want to give it more definition, introducing a narrow carpet runner can help add extra warmth to the space.
As with every other part of your home, lighting is important in the hallway. If you have a large area to play with then you can afford to be bold with the lighting and can even add it to different levels around the space. For smaller halls, you may want something functional, illuminating but ultimately welcoming. Don’t’ be afraid to try wall lights rather than ceiling ones, particularly if you have a narrow hallway.
Don’t Forget the Stairs
The stairs are a real focal point of the hallway and paying special attention to this area is important. Carpet and wood are the most popular stair coverings, but you shouldn’t neglect the walls. Experimenting with bold colours and unusual patterns can transform your stairway and there are plenty of options to choose from. A lovely way to personalise blank stairway walls is to add a collage of pictures of family, friends and even holidays and pets. Experiment with different frames and colours at different angles to get a unique, personalised wall of art.