Hall and stairs are important part of your home
YOU'RE not alone if you walk into your home and your spirits wilt as you're greeted by a jumble of coats, shoes and bags, as the hallway is often the most neglected area in the home.
All too often it's an afterthought when it comes to decor, and yet the hall should be the star of the show because it presents the first impression of your style to visitors.
Here's the experts' advice on transforming a hallway.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
A hallway is usually such a small area in a home that you can try a bold pattern paper or a colour you might be too inhibited to use in a main living area.
"Painting walls a bright or darker shade half way up a wall, dividing with a dado rail if desired, and then using a lighter shade for the upper half of the wall which reaches the ceiling will make a hallway look more spacious," advises Charlotte Hedeman Gueniau, author of Happy Home.
Add impact, she suggests, by removing carpet and painting an entire staircase, and stencil decorative or amusing words on each riser to bring instant character to the space. Be aware this will make stairs noisier though.
WALK THE FLOOR
It's essential to have hard-wearing flooring in a hall – a high traffic area.
"Floor tiles come in such a wide range of colours, textures and finishes they're becoming increasingly popular for halls," says Claire O'Brien, trend manager for British Ceramic Tile.
"Natural stone tiles are an ideal way to create an opulent-looking hall.
"For a real statement, combine natural stone with a French pattern design, to emphasise the shade variation of the tiles."
Carpet, provided it's high-quality and hard-wearing, is a good choice and can bring warmth and colour to a hall area, as well as minimising noise.
Staircases are a key feature in a hallway and nowadays their potential is being realised with revamps of bannisters, bespoke staircases, or lighting.
Adding light to a staircase can change its aesthetics, says Richard McLane, design director at Bisca, which specialise in bespoke staircases.
"A well-lit staircase, particularly one in an open-plan space, can maximise the illusion of space," he says.
"Spotlights can be recessed into the wall alongside the stair to provide effect more than illumination.
"Recessed LED strip lights can be used on timber or stone treads to emphasise the line of the steps and will scatter lights across the treads and risers, and the effect can also be used on glass staircases."
If members of the family discard their possessions haphazardly as soon as they're through the front door, there's an urgent need for storage that's so easy to use they can't ignore it.
"Stopping a trail of belongings littering a hallway can be a thankless task, so the space needs equipping so it's user-friendly," says Clotilde Passalacqua at Ikea.
"A cupboard for shoes, a generous amount of hooks or a coat rack, as well as a slim storage unit for hiding away seasonal items such as boots, hats and gloves can transform a space."