Hallways are drastically underrated. 

Not only is it your home's first impression but it's also the room that all others will be leading off and the colour you choose will be the thread that links the whole home together....no pressure.

When tackling a whole home renovation it makes perfect sense to leave decorating your hallway to the end - the last thing you want is furniture scuffing the paintwork and builders boots on your beautiful new stair runner! 

But make sure you think about your hallway vision from the beginning. Keep your chosen hallway paint swatches close to hand as you plan the other rooms so that you can make sure they play nicely with each other.

So without further ado, let's turn your hallway into the perfect prologue to your masterpiece.


What are the best paint colours for a hallway?

Trick question - there's no such thing! The right hue for your hallway will depend on three things:

1. How you want to feel in your hallway - your hallway is where you are welcomed home after a long day. Do you want to feel bright and lifted or warm and comforted?

2. The quality of light - is it dark and gloomy, lacking the warmth of sunlight? Many neutral tones look flat and dull without natural light. Similarly, many dark tones look almost black in without natural light.

3. The colour of the adjoining rooms -make sure your hallway colour scheme is complimentary of the design in each room that leads off from it. This doesn't mean they need to be the same, but the hall should use elements from each room to create a cohesive feel in your home.


What is a good colour to paint a narrow hallway?

narrow hallway colour ideas

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

Narrow hallways are a common conundrum. After all, why use up valuable space on a room that you just need to pass through? 

One option is to keep the walls fresh and bright, especially if you have great natural light like the image above. Alternatively, you can go for a dark paint colour in your hallway as they recede, giving the illusion that the room is bigger than it is.

Patterned wallpaper is also a great way to add depth to a narrow hallway, as it tricks the eye into thinking that there's space beyond the pattern in the forefront. 


Need hallway inspiration? Take a look at our hallway designs in our portfolio. You can even shop the look!



What colours brighten up a hallway?

light hallway

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

As well as being narrow, hallways are usually dark and lack natural light as they run through the middle of your home. 

You might think this question has an obvious answer - surely you paint it white to make it feel as bright as possible? Nope! Without natural light hitting them, white paint colours can look extremely dull and flat. Natural light is what brings neutral tones to life. Darker colours in contrast are in their element in dark spaces! 

If you're still keen to keep your hallway neutral, perhaps to work best with the adjoining rooms (if you were paying attention earlier!) then choose neutrals with warmer undertones like yellow or red to replace some of that natural sun the room is lacking.


Hallway paint ideas:

1. Dark painted narrow hallway

narrow dark hallway paint

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

This is a perfect example of how a dark hallway colour scheme can be your answer! Our designer here has cleverly created a number of feature walls keeping in mind the view from the adjoining rooms.

Hallways are also the perfect place to show off your gallery walls. With little floor space, your walls will need to do all the talking.


Need hallway inspiration? Take a look at our hallway designs in our portfolio. You can even shop the look!



2. Two-tone hallways

two tone hallways

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

Why settle for one colour in your hallway when you can have two?! Older properties tend to have a dado rail that runs through the middle of the wall. Celebrate this period feature by having a two-tone hallway with a darker colour on the bottom.

No dado rail? No problem. You can create the same effect but it will require a steady hand! Watch our tutorial with Lick to get a perfect straight line:


3. Go for a dark hallway to make adjoining rooms feel larger

hallway paint idea

Image credit: My Bespoke Room and Lick

Dark hallways are a wonderful way to instantly feel relaxed and comforted when you come home after a  long day. They also have the added benefit of making the adjoining rooms feel lighter and brighter, drawing you through the house like a moth to a flame!

Make sure you test samples throughout the day in different qualities of light before committing. Without light, some dark colours can just look black.


4. Think of pink as a neutral

pink hallway

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

Gone are the days when pink was just for little girls' bedrooms. There are so many wonderful new pinks available that are much more grown-up. 

Think of pink as a new neutral and a great alternative to just choosing white throughout. Certain pinks can look light and soft in the day, then come alive in the evenings with warm ambient artificial lighting.


5. Use gloss paint in your hallway

This great tip comes from the wonderful Joa Studholme from Farrow and Ball. She suggests using gloss on the walls rather than emulsion. Gloss bounces the light around a room which you can really clearly see in the image above.

Gloss is also more forgiving with scuff marks which hallways are prone to collecting. 

You can catch our interview with the lady herself here:


6. Paint a feature wall

feature wall

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

You can't help but be pulled through this hallway to the end! Painting a stripe at the end of this hallway draws your eye through and distracting you from how narrow it is.


Need hallway inspiration? Take a look at our hallway designs in our portfolio. You can even shop the look!



7. Colour wash your hallway walls and woodwork

Another trick for small spaces is to colour wash your walls and woodwork in the same colour. If the dado rail and skirting were white in the image above, it would break up the walls and make them look even shorter. 


8. Create a maximalist's dream with patterned wallpaper

wallpaper in hallway

Image credit: My Bespoke Room and Lick

Don't miss the opportunity to have fun in your hallway! You never really spend much time in it as it's a transient space making them the perfect spot for bright colours and patterns. Plus, your neighbours will be craning their necks with curiosity to see more!


9. Contrast your walls and door

contrast walls and door in hallway

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

Light walls with dark woodwork is a winning combination in hallways. We love how the door has been turned into a real feature in this hallway drawing your eye upwards. 

Painting your door frames dark as well, ties it all together and also creates a lovely moment of passing through a portal into the next room!


10. Make a feature of your stairs

dark painted staircase

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

Your walls shouldn't get all of the fun. Why not get creative with the paint colour of your stairs too? By painting this staircase dark it creates a real focal point that's hard to ignore in this hallway, drawing your eye upwards.


11. Create a feature in your hallway with colour blocking

Dark painted arch with pink sofa

Image credit: My Bespoke Room

Feeling creative?! Create a feature with colour blocking to draw you in through your hallway. Remember, it's only paint - if you don't like it, you can cover it up and start again!

Looking for more inspiration? Have a look at these paint ideas that will transform your hallway!


Ready to transform your hallway? Book a FREE chat to find out how one of our designers can help:



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