Decorating Ideas: Dressing up Hallways

Hallways can be tricky when it comes to decorating. You don’t want to put too much into such a small space, but it shouldn’t be plain and boring either. There are many effective decorating ideas that will help make your hallway feel like an extension of your living areas instead of a cold, empty space.

A hallway is perfect for use as a gallery. Even if some of your favorite pieces of artwork no longer coordinate with the decor in other living areas, there is no reason to hide them away. Create an art gallery and put them on display. Using paint that is a shade lighter or darker than the color of your hallway, paint several squares or rectangles to use as backdrops for your art. Select frames that match to give each piece a common element, and line the pieces up, hanging them at eye level.

Expanding on the gallery theme, fill your hallway with photos. Each time you get a new family photo or a new portrait of your children, take the old one down and add it to the hallway. Line the portraits up in chronological order so everyone can see how much your family has grown and changed over the years.

A hallway is also a great space for displaying children’s artwork, and your kids will be thrilled that their creations rate a space in your design plan. Use colorful frames and hang them slightly lower than you would hang other artwork, so budding artists can appreciate their work. If your hallway is dark, add accent lighting to show off artwork or photos.

Speaking of lighting, more lighting may be all that you need to transform your hallway. A beautiful fixture or chandelier that catches the eye and brightens the space can quickly warm things up.

Another way to extend living areas into the hallway is to cover the walls with fabric that coordinates with other fabric treatments in the home. Otherwise, when painting a room that adjoins the hallway, continue the paint into the hall to tie the spaces together.

Adding greenery will also make the hallway feel more like a part of the home. Lush plants on each side of the opening, at each end of the hall, will bring life to the space.

Architectural elements also add interest to the hall. An antique window frame hung on the wall will mimic an actual window. Sculpted wrought iron pieces, carved wooden appliqu├ęs, or a lovely set of sconces will also make the space more interesting. A small shelf just below the ceiling, running the length of the hall, makes a great display area for collectibles.

The key to making the hallway a part of the home is taking advantage of its features, or adding the features that it lacks. Treat the hall the same way you would treat another room in your home. There are always challenges in decorating smaller spaces, but those challenges give you the opportunity to get creative. Since a hallway isn’t technically considered a room or a living area, you don’t have to use typical decorating techniques. Use your imagination and have fun with it.