How I long for a foyer. A double-doored, Dynasty-style expanse with sprawling floorspace and a twin staircase. Or, to be honest, anything with a bit of turning space would be great. As it is, I have a short, narrow Victorian entrance with two doors immediately off to the right and a staircase leading to the humble first floor. What’s a girl to do?
Well, as with anything, you’ve got two choices. Close the door and forget about it or work with what you’ve got to create the best space you can. A hallway though, by its nature, sort of eliminates that first option. It’s the one spot you have to open the door to every day. It’s unconsciously one of the most used spaces in a home. And yet, it’s also often one of the most forgotten. An abandoned afterthought.
We’ve maximised ours by hanging the most un-photogenic art gallery on the ‘Gram – look too long and you’ll get a creak in your neck – and adding in an industrial cabinet that works both as a bench and somewhere to cleverly stash shoes. So many shoes and never a pair to be found. How does it even happen?
So with my mother’s feedback on last week’s post on DIY art ringing in my ears – ‘Very long, wasn’t it?’ – let’s just cut to the chase and take a tour of some extraordinary entrances. No, you get your mind out of the gutter.
Room For Tuesday
She has since moved on to a new renovation project so who knows what this corner looks like now, but when Sarah Gibson lived here it looked like this. There are so many tricks that make this corner look bigger than it is. The subtle warmth of the pinky toned accent wall zones the area without encompassing it. The white-framed, oversized art with a distant landscape creates an almost window like feature and the clever use of the wall hooks around the corner draws your eye around, fooling your brain on where either wall actually ends. Add in a rug with a large pattern and a slimline bench with tonal, natural storage and you have a seamless but functional space that almost acts as a room in itself. Check out the rest of the house-that-was here and follow Sarah’s current updates over on her Instagram.
Melanie Lissack Interiors
She’s one of my favourites on the ‘Gram and for good reason. There is no task she won’t take on and she never fails to come up with a banging decorating DIY that won’t bust the budget. One of her latest updates was painting the inside of her front door. The hack? Think outside the lines. And then paint over them too. The result? A grand illusion of epic proportions. Check out the details on how you can do the same over on her blog.
Fixer Upper (S5E5)
Oh Joanna. Procreator of beautiful children, renovator of champions and inventor of new decorating terms like Moditerranean, which is how she chose to describe this Waco family home project on season five of Fixer Upper. Modern Mediterranean. I’ve got to tell you; I’m down. Simple but unexpected is one of the Gaines’ trademarks and it never fails to deliver. From the geometric blend of concrete and wood on the floor to the decorative, wooden hook rack and the tall, oversized baskets it’s a natural, minimalistic look that could be translated to any size of hallway.
Far from a new concept but always an effective one. If you have a front door that leads directly on to stairs, wallpapering the risers can be a super simple DIY that transforms the space. Particularly effective in a narrow hallway where pattern and print could feel either lost or overpowering. Liz is one of my all-time favourite people on the ‘Gram for her unhindered creativity and general loveliness. She knows no boundaries and will encourage you to push past your own. She recently moved to a new spot in New Orleans, but her old staircase was a lesson in how to execute this to perfection.
One of the big trend for 2020 is definitely going to be penny tiles. But how many will take it a step further and personalise it like Olivia from Lust Living? Because who doesn’t want to see a positive affirmation every time they come in their front door? Another stroke of genius from the queen of luxe, monochrome interiors.
Natashia & Shauna
Public Three Eleven Design
The popularity of large, round mirrors has sky-rocketed in the last twelve months and they’re not going away any time soon. Easily incorporated into all decorating styles and ideal as a point of difference to create light and space in a typically narrow spot, in my opinion the bigger the better. This beastie in Natashia & Shauna’s home is a perfect example of how an over-sized piece can subtly blend into an entire scene. And what a scene it is. Classic, French farmhouse with a modern, industrial twist. You can find similar here.
Susie & Mitch
This Giant Life
One of my favourite ways to create interest is to add built-in texture like the wooden wall treatment we installed in the living room. In a hallway where you don’t generally have the option to use cushions or textiles for depth, adding some detailing to your walls is a great idea. Traditionally panelling is, of course, having a huge resurgence and can look great, but I’ll always be a sucker for a bit of geometric woodwork. And this DIY, dark painted feature by Susie and Mitch over on This Giant Life is the absolute ticket.
Inside Out AU (Anonymous Residence)
Photographed by Septimius Krogh
And you might not have the glazed doors orthe original stone walls but you can still emulate some of that rustic, Italian style pictured here, as photographed by Kristin Septimius Krogh for Inside Out AU. Keep the area light and white-washed and add a simple hook set-up on which to gather your entire collection of hats and woven baskets. And at least this way, you’d never forget to bring your own bag to the shop.