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  • Gina Everett

Hallway decorating ideas to make a perfect first impression.

Hallway decorating ideas

Hallways are often overlooked in terms of interior design. Whilst not rooms as such they are the welcoming entrance to your home and create a first impression and impact that effects the rest of your decorating scheme. As transitional spaces - for moving through one space to the next - they are one of the most used spaces in a home and need to withstand a lot of wear and tear. Hallway decorating ideas have to incorporate lots of functions. Here are some ideas to transform your space.

Clever hallway decorating ideas - Walls

A light colour will create a feeling of space and a welcoming entrance to your home. The age and style of your home is a key factor in in hallway decorating ideas. Regency and Victorian townhouses often have small narrow hallways with large wooden doors. With a transom panel above the door as the only source of light they can be dark. Light walls create a feeling of space. Homes from the 1930’s onwards have larger hallways so you can afford to use a bolder colour on the walls or patterned wall paper to add interest.

As previously mentioned hallways get a lot of use so practicality is key when choosing wall paper, paint or other wall coverings. Choose hardwearing and wipeable paints and wallpapers and even then be ready to regularly touch up marks and scratches to keep it looking fresh. In period homes wooden panelling with a covering of hardwearing and wipeable eggshell paint is an ideal solution.


Choices of furniture in the hallway depend on two things

  • Hallway size

  • Do you need decorative or practical furniture?

If your hallway is small or narrow, furniture in the hallway can be more of a hinderance than a help. In this case consider problem solving storage pieces - coat hooks, shelves for post and keys, narrow console tables or shoe storage if space allows. If possible locate these items at the back of the hall near or under the stairs rather than in the entrance way. A clear run in and out of the door is both space and time saving. If your small hallway looking plain without any furniture, add some character add a decorative runner or a dramatic chandelier or pendant light.

Larger hallways have space for furniture and decor so decide if you need to be functional or can afford to be decorative. Family homes need to deal with storage of everyday items - coat racks, shoes and boots, post etc. Choose practical pieces to withstand the comings and goings of kids, pets and visitors. Sideboards are ideal, space for letters and lunch boxes. Leave them out when you need them or hide away in the cupboards underneath when you don’t. A freestanding coat rack is a practical piece that can always be hidden away at times when you want your hallway looking more spacious. Decorative furniture can look great in a hallway if you have the space. It is the ideal place to put a unique single piece such as chair or painting that doesn’t go in any of your other rooms. Plants and flowers are also a welcoming touch when you enter a home.


A hardwearing material is the ideal choice. Wooden floors, ceramic, stone, terra cotta or traditional period patterned tiles are an ideal solution. Provided everyone removes their shoes at the door, hard floors make your home more hygienic. Wash hard floors clean when needed and save the carpets in the rest of your home from wear and tear. It is not unheard of to have carpet in a hallway. Steer clear of creams and beiges and choose a colour that will wear well. However carpet on the stairs is a great way to insulate against noise. Match carpet from the rest of your home with a section whip stitched to fit the size of your stairs or use as a hall runner. Alternatively create a focus with bolder striped or patterned runner.


Where there is no room for furniture a feature light can add a lot of character to a hallway. Use the free space above to make a statement. Where hallways allow double height with overlooking stairs or landings, accentuate the height by dropping lights and different lengths to create a dramatic feature.

Hallways needn’t be neglected. When considering hallway decorating ideas, work with existing features size, light and character, complementing them with the right colours, perfect furniture. lighting and flooring and your entryway becomes an entrance to be proud of.

Photo credits Houzz & copyright: bialasiewicz / 123RF Stock Photo


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