Our dark, dingy hallway was a space that desperately needed a transformation. It was unwelcoming, often frightening for small children, and smelled of old socks. It was not the grand entranceway our home deserved, so we embarked on a journey to turn this dismal corridor into a beautiful, light-filled space. In this post, I'll share the story of how we accomplished this feat and the steps we took towards out hallway.
Designs and Ideas
The first step in our hallway makeover was to collaborate with an architect and builder to create a vision for the space. We discussed our dreams for a brighter, more open and welcoming hallway. They came up with an innovative design that would involve removing part of the external wall and opening the hallway out by building a small extension. A skylight would be incorporated in the new extension to bring light in from above. This would not only brighten up the corridor but also create a more spacious and open feel.
Glazed Crittal-Style Doors
Our hallway was like the Bermuda Triangle of interior design, with doors leading to destinations known only to the bravest of explorers. Visitors often embarked on unintentional treasure hunts through our maze of passageways, hoping to find the bathroom but frequently ending up in the heart of our kitchen instead. The solution? We decided to introduce some illumination into our home, and what better way to do so than with the addition of glazed doors? While I harboured a secret yearning for the classic Crittal-style doors, the reality of our budget had us settling for white primed doors, given an air of sophistication with a coat of Farrow and Ball Railings paint. These doors not only brightened our sombre hallway but also turned it into a well-connected hub for our home's hustle and bustle. They transformed our hallway into a beautiful modern space where light flowed freely. Now, even our guests could navigate our home without feeling like they'd stumbled into an elaborate labyrinth – a win for them and a win for us!
The Big Reveal - Parquet Flooring
One of the most exciting discoveries during the renovation was beneath the old blue carpet: a stunning mahogany parquet floor. Its glossy finish not only added a touch of luxury to the hallway but also reflected light beautifully. Our luck doubled as the dining room also boasted a parquet floor, allowing us to relocate this into our new hallway extension. To keep the harmony, we replaced the dining room's floor with Karndean LVT, aligning perfectly with the kitchen's flooring. The builders' craftsmanship in merging old and new was so seamless that you'd never suspect it wasn't there from the start.
To further enhance the feeling of space and light, we added a large mirror to the hallway. This mirror not only bounces light around the room but is also incredibly practical for those last-minute outfit and hair checks before leaving the house.
Clever Closet Storage
Ah, the joy of a well-organised storage system! I confess, I have a deep, almost spiritual connection with orderliness. My sanity teeters on the edge when chaos reigns supreme. So, when it came to our household brimming with coats, shoes, and an arsenal of sports gear (thanks to our family's enthusiastic outdoor pursuits), I knew we needed a game-changing storage solution. Enter the Clever Closet system, a marvel that descended upon our cluttered lives like a superhero sweeping in to save the day! Our hallway, once a chaotic abyss of strewn shoes and rogue scarves, underwent a miraculous transformation. In just a day, this ingenious creation efficiently occupied every nook and cranny beneath our stairs. Its pull-out drawers, oh, the glorious pull-out drawers! Spacious enough to swallow scarves, hats, shoes, and whatnot with gusto. Now, our hallway boasts the serenity of a Zen garden, and I, well, I revel in the triumphant glory of a clutter-free existence. The open space, the absence of mess—our home now sings with harmonious organization.
Lighting choices are crucial, particularly in dimly lit spaces. In our hallway, we've carefully combined ambient, task, and accent lighting to create a welcoming atmosphere. The result: practical downlights, a captivating mid-century pendant, and a snug table lamp that casts a delightful, warm glow during wintry evenings.
Selecting the right paint colour was another important decision. We chose a soft, neutral hue that complemented the other elements of the hallway, flowed with rooms coming off the hallway and further brightened the space. For me, a neutral wall colour is the perfect canvas for the abstract artwork I love to display on the walls.
Definition with Dark Accents
To provide a sense of definition and contrast, we incorporated dark-coloured elements such as doors, the staircase, sockets and switches and a stylish cast-iron effect radiator in anthracite.
The Lowest Point
Like any home renovation adventure, our journey had its fair share of unexpected hurdles. The absolute rock-bottom moment had to be that fateful rainy evening in October 2021 when an unforeseen power outage hit us like a brick. With our heating system out of co
mmission, we found ourselves huddled in the living room, pizza in hand, basking in the warm glow of a crackling fire. Just when we thought our evening couldn't get any more chaotic, the doorbell decided to ring. Navigating through a minefield of acrow props that littered our hallway, I finally reached the door, only to find my dear old dad standing there, completely drenched, having made a daring escape from a full-blown family drama. Our faithful pup, Molly, was over the moon with excitement about the prospect of Grandad's unexpected visit, and in her exuberance, she promptly christened the floor with her own version of a welcome mat. So, picture this: I'm in the pitch-black house, wielding a mop to clean up doggy puddles while my dad casually finishes off the last slice of my pizza. Life, it seems, has a special talent for serving up absurdity in the most unexpected moments!
Our journey to transform our dark, dingy hallway into a light-filled, inviting space was filled with challenges and triumphs. The collaboration with architects and builders, the addition of an extension and skylight, and the creative use of doors, flooring, mirrors, and lighting all played a significant role in the successful makeover. The hallway now stands as a testament to our dedication to creating a beautiful and functional space in our home.