hall pass…
what to do with that long, dark space

Hallways… they connect rooms, sometimes they’re an entrance, maybe they’re that slightly awkward space in a stairwell. Whether practical or awkward, halls often present design dilemmas. What do you do with that narrow space?

The answer is, it depends. If you’ve got a wide hall that has extra space, like on a stair landing, you can create a small reading nook. If you’ve got a long, narrow hall lined with doors, you can’t add seating, but you can certainly add bookshelves, or create a photo gallery. We’ve got some decorating tips, tricks and ideas to help create a hallway that’s just as wonderful and welcoming as the rest of your home. Pick your favorites!Keep it simple

Hallways don’t need to be complicated to have big impact. A simple carpet runner, console table and a stunning mirror or piece of art can make a strong statement.

Embrace color

This works especially well in stairwells or other small, confined hall spaces. Paint your hall an unexpected, bright color, something you love but would never use in a larger space. Accessorize in coordinating colors as if you were decorating a room.

Don’t overcrowd

If your hallway is your entrance, leads directly into other rooms, or connects rooms, it’s important to remember traffic flow and not overcrowd the space. This is where console tables work well. Try to decorate up, not out.

That awkward space

The odd hallway that serves as the meeting point of stairs, rooms, doorways and other adjoining spaces can be a real challenge. Be mindful of traffic patterns and available space. If the hall is narrow, stick with wall décor instead of things on the floor. You want to avoid the hall feeling like a plain, empty space, so decorate it to coordinate with adjoining spaces and fool the eye into thinking they’re together.

That really awkward space

Those odd little spaces that seem to go nowhere? Like the little jog at the top of the stairs, or an odd angle in the entry. They’re common in older houses that have gone through renovations. Instead of trying to hide those odd spaces, embrace them. Decorate them to create a vignette – a pretty plant, a display of collectibles on a unique wood shelf, or other things that you can enjoy looking at and passing every day.

Create a library

Consider lining a long, or wide hallway with shelves to create a library. Make sure to add plenty of light to avoid the space feeling dark and closed in. If you’ve got space, tuck a small chair in a corner to create a cozy reading nook.

Light it up

Install good lighting, either as ceiling lights, sconces, or table or floor lamps. Consider how you want your hall to feel and function. If you don’t want the hall to be a long, dark passage, add lots of light!

Get practical

If your hall is near the front or back door, make sure it functions as a coming and going space. Is there a closet nearby for jackets and umbrellas? If not, consider hooks, or furniture to handle the job. Placing a mirror near the door is always appreciated for those last-minute checks on the way out.

When to leave it alone

If you’ve got a hallway that stretches along beautiful windows that command an amazing view – go ahead and leave the hall alone. The purpose of a hall is to get from point A to point B without thinking about the journey. So keep them simple.

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