In the rush to decorate rooms, we often forget that hallway decor is every bit as essential. Hallways lead from room to room and having a strong focal point entices guests to flow through them. In fact, it is often the promise of scattered treasures that has a creeping down hallways in search of more.
When two hallways meet to form a “T”, deeper pieces of furniture can be used to create a nook. In this hallway juncture, I incorporated three decor elements: furniture, lighting, and art. The Baker chest of drawers is perfectly proportioned for the incline of the stairs. A painting found at an antique shop fills the open space at the higher end of the staircase. Finally, a French pewter lamp casts a glow in evenings, warming what is typically a dimly lit space. The vignette is finished with a woven basket of flowers on the floor so that your eye is drawn to features at all levels. The components also perfectly mirror the incline of the stairs.
Even if small, hallways still need a focal point. If possible, find a smaller scale piece of furniture, perhaps a chest, tray on a stand, or chair. Antiques are wonderful choices as many of them are naturally smaller proportioned than modern furniture. If your hallway does not even have room for that, try a piece of artwork lit to draw the eye. In this home, the front door has one small nook with a high window as the only separation between the entrance and the living room. We found a French tallboy cabinet from 1895 that fit perfectly in the space.
Stairs draw people’s eyes upward so it is important to have a focal point at the top. Because there is nothing less inviting than a dimly lit tunnel, I often try to make sure that I incorporate lighting. The landing at the top of these stairs was small and narrow. However, I was able to use an antique serving cart as the focal point and installed sconces on either side of a mirror. As guests would be viewing this space from below, I placed a faux plant on top of the cart that was tall enough to be seen from even the steep angle of the first floor landing.