First impressions really do count. We all know and believe this, we all make sure we are looking our most presentable when meeting a new love interests parents, or on our first day at work or worse, for an appointment with the bank manager. All too often however, when it comes to our homes, we seem to develop a collective amnesia. Your hallway is not just a passageway to the lounge and kitchen it is the first (and most lasting) impression people take from your home. It is a reception area where you greet your guests and welcome them into your home. It is also the first thing you see after returning home from a hard day at work. If you are guilty of having a dingy hallway crammed with coats that force you to walk sideways just to get past or a carpet that appears to have been used as a rally track then read on- there is hope for you yet!
The first thing to do is take down the coat hangers. I know it seems a pain to have to take your coat all the way up to your bedroom wardrobe, but that is why you spent so much money on them in the first place. Doing this will instantly open up the space as well as free up some wall space enabling you to hang some artwork. Shoes are fine to be kept under the stairs if you must, but at least get a decent shoe-rack which conceals not only your footwear but also the interesting smells that emanate from them.
In terms of flooring, it is best to do away which the carpet and investing in something a little more resistant to wear and tear. Wooden or slate flooring are not only hard wearing, they both ooze class and grown up sophistication. Before purchasing either however, check the state of your own floorboards as with a little sanding, they may scrub up beautifully and save you a few pennies. Don’t worry about any imperfections, natural aging only adds to the beauty of wood.
To avoid shrinking the hall any further, the colour scheme should be kept light and patterned or floral wallpaper should be avoided. White is always reliable, as are earthy tones for a really welcoming feel.
In addition to being rather narrow, halls generally have disproportionately high ceilings. To combat this, the pendant light on the ceiling should hang from an extra long wire. Lowering the lighting will effectively bring the ceiling height down for a less imposing and cavernous feel. With the light now lower down, there is a chance to add some decoration to the room in the shape of a beautiful light shade or table lamp. As there is little else in the hallway in terms of decoration, really push the boat out on this. If done right, it will become the focal point the room, thereby distracting guests from the ceiling height.
If you are lucky enough to have an old ornate banister, do not even consider getting rid of it! Instead sand it down and repaint it and it will add a real comforting element to your home. If you live in a modern home then don’t fear, a visit to an antiques shop or flea market where you can pick up some old ornaments, should add that comforting feeling of age.