Hallway ideas: decor and storage tips for a stunning first impression
Make an entrance with these expert tips on hallway decor and clever storage solutions
Hallways can be a tricky area when it comes to decor - we all need room to carry in bags of shopping and storage for shoes and coats, and it can be difficult to find ways to style up the space without compromising on functionality.
But, with a few clever tricks and multipurpose storage ideas you’ll be on your way to making a stunning first impression. Here’s how to create a hardworking hallway in your home!
Add fitted cabinets
Do away with the dingy cupboard under the stairs and transform the space with fitted cabinets. Sliding drawers give you quick access to all the items you’ve stored and push back for a seamless finish.
They’re perfect for items, like wellingtons, that you don’t want to clutter up the floor. So, you can get ready for a winter walk without negotiating with the spiders first.
Buy a coat stand
They've fallen out of fashion to coat hooks, but it’s amazing how many coats, scarves and hats you can fit onto a coat stand. They provide 360 degree storage and make efficient use of even the smallest corners.
Drilling hooks into the wall isn’t always practical, or possible, for renters, so coat stands can be taken away with you to your next home, along with your deposit.
Invest in new storage solutions
Efficient storage should be your first priority in a hallway; it doesn’t matter how beautifully you decorate the space if clutter begins to pile up around it.
Put the items you need to store into categories; things you need every day, every week, every month and seasonally. Things you need every day can be placed in easy access areas and items you need less often can be stored away.
Utilise overhead space
Use the space above a line of hooks for storing off-season accessories. Your hats and gloves will be tucked neatly away for summer, but you can easily pull them out if you start to feel a nip in the air.
More like this
Having a seasonal storage switch-over is a great opportunity to re-assess items of clothing you haven’t used over the year, which prevents build up in the long term.
Paint the woodwork
Don’t just think about the walls – a fresh coat of paint on skirting boards, stair risers and spindles really helps to brighten up a hallway. Tones of white are suitable for an airier hallway and can look very stylish, especially if you think about painting the woodwork in a different shade, such as a pale grey, to give definition.
Speaking of woodwork, another way of making the hallway appear larger is to paint doors, door frames, skirting boards and even radiators in the same tone, preferably a light shade. This will give the space a continuous and uniform look, giving the illusion of a much bigger space.
Consider adding a stair runner
Choose a stair runner with strong vertical lines to give your staircase a dramatic look. The lines draw your eye upwards to create the illusion of a higher ceiling and a larger hallway.
This trick also works with rugs; your hallway will look longer if you lay a striped runner along the floor.
If you're not a fan of striped stair runners, continue patterns you’re using on the floor up the staircase for a sense of flow. If your hallway is carpeted, simply use the same or similar carpet on the stairs.
If you’re using tiles, mimic the tile pattern using a runner. You could even paint the stair risers with the same designs as your tiles for a uniform look.
Paint a faux dado rail
Create the elegant look of a dado rail by simply painting halfway up the wall. This modern alternative to the traditional feature is much easier to install and requires no dusting!
Use a complementary colour for a striking look or choose a tone slightly darker than your wall colour for a softer backdrop that will blend with your existing décor. For colour ideas that are bang on-trend, get inspired with our guide to the paint shades to watch in 2021.
Choose gloss finishes
Being smaller rooms, hallways benefit from half-tiled walls to give the appearance of a taller, open space, and a gloss tile will help light bounce around the room to give the illusion of a larger, brighter area. Gloss finishes are easy to clean and low maintenance – perfect for muddy encounters and high traffic.
For the floors, a durable porcelain-bodied tile would be a great option for the extra footfall, to really maximise longevity. Victorian-inspired tiles are very much on-trend right now, and can be incorporated to create a bold hallway space. Pair rich hues with striking patterns for the ultimate ‘wow’ factor!
Install low-level hooks
Encourage children to keep themselves organised by including a couple of low-level hooks that they can easily reach. They’ll be able to hang their own coats up and will always know where their scarves are. One less thing to worry about!
Opt for radiator covers
Make the most of the space you have by turning your radiator into a stylish console table using a radiator cover. Paint your cover to match the colour of your walls and it will blend seamlessly into the background.
The top of the cover is the perfect place to keep keys, just pop them in a statement bowl to keep things neat.
Add hard-wearing doormats
Stop dirt in its tracks with a hard-wearing doormat. Turtle mats were originally manufactured for use on oil rigs, so they can stand up to rigorous use!
Absorbent fibres suck up muddy footprints to leave your hallway clean and bright.
Buy a stair basket
As it’s a transitional space, a bit of clutter always finds its way to the bottom of the stairs. Help it on its way to its proper place with a stair basket.
Pile in the abandoned items and they can be taken upstairs by the next person to take the trip, just make sure to choose a basket that is narrow enough to prevent a tripping hazard.
Add water resistance
Consider adding water resistance to areas where you’ll hang wet coats as this will protect the paintwork and help to prevent damp.
Paint that’s specially formulated for bathrooms will do a good job of this, and you can buy it to match the colour used in the rest of the room. We also love this IKEA hack that uses a kitchen splashback to cover the wall.
More hallway decor ideas:
Thea Jeffreys is the Digital Writer on YourHomeStyle.uk, and is passionate about all things home décor. When she’s not scouring the internet for budget-friendly homeware finds, you’ll find her writing about the latest interior trends and handy upcycling tricks.