• Hometalker
  • Broadway, NC

Banishing the Boring Narrow Hallway

7 Materials
2 Weeks

I did a post earlier this year on stenciling my boring white hall. It is very narrow with multiple doors. I did not want to do the typical thing of hanging family pictures and the hall is too narrow for furniture or even shelves. To add interest, I decided to stencil the upper half and my sweet Hubs did 'faux' panels on the bottom. If you're interested, . Finally, I found three metal pieces to decorate the walls. Please let me know what you think. We finally replaced the builder grade ceiling light, so be sure to go to the last picture to see the updated light fixture that we created from a 1920's lamp shade.

Plain white hallway--boring!!
Plain white hallway--boring!!

stenciled hallway finally finished

Transformed with Stencil and Paint.
Transformed with Stencil and Paint.

Through the magic of stenciling and paint, it became a lot more interesting. Here is the link to the original post which gives a little more detail on how we did the faux panels:" target="_blank">

Thrift Store Metal Pieces as art.
Thrift Store Metal Pieces as art.

My hall is narrow, so it is difficult to get a good shot, but you can see the three pieces that now decorate the hall. I wanted open and airy metal pieces so that I did not block the stencil--(because I worked so dang hard on it!) Please notice the builder grade light that was in the original post and see the new fixture (at the end of this updated post) that we made from a flea market find.

stenciled hallway finally finished, wall decor

Now for the fun part. I found my first metal piece at an outdoor junk stand while we were traveling. It is gorgeous and is one of my favorite pieces in our entire house. I live in a split level and this is the first thing you see as you get to the top of the stairs. (You can see my kitchen to the left.)

stenciled hallway finally finished, wall decor

This is the view from the other direction.

stenciled hallway finally finished, wall decor

Next, I found this fireplace screen-again while traveling. We removed the screening from the back using a Dremel saw to cut all the soldered tack points. Then we removed the feet and painted it.

stenciled hallway finally finished, wall decor

Here is the painted screen now -- it reminds me of grasses that might grow beside a pond.

stenciled hallway finally finished, wall decor

Finally found the third piece--another fireplace screen. Again, Hubs removed the screening and we painted it.

I use this screen to disply Christmas Cards, birthday cards, and seasonal pictures of my grown children and grandchildren. For example, I will clip pictures of my (now grown) children in their Halloween costumes from 30 years ago along with their children (now) in their costumes; or Easter outfits, or snow pictures. Even when it is left plain, it is still interesting since it has a bowed shape and doesn't just lie flat on the wall.

Metal 1920's Lampshade
Metal 1920's Lampshade

Many, many wonderful Hometalkers suggested we get rid of the builder grade light fixture. We found this (very heavy) metal lampshade at a flea market. I loved the patina and Hubs said he could convert it into a ceiling fixture. Score!!

stenciled hallway finally finished

We took a black plastic ceiling medallion and sprayed multiple coats of paint until it matched the metal shade. Hubs figured out a way to attach the shade through the medallion and we added an Edison bulb.

stenciled hallway finally finished

The Edison Bulb gives a beautiful sparkle. (Yes we have popcorn ceilings, but such is life. They have been painted over and contain asbestos, so there will be no scraping them off.)

Completed Hall with Updated Light
Completed Hall with Updated Light

Well, friends, what do you think?? I now love my "new" (40 year old) hall and the one-of-a-kind light fixture that my brilliant Hubs helped me create. Improvement over the before fixture, yes?

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Have a question about this project?

3 of 33 questions
  • Vik
    on Dec 4, 2018

    Where can i find your posting for the chair rail and stenciling? I've got a hall just like your before photo. Thnx

    • Vik
      on Dec 24, 2018

      Thanks for the link. This is really a great project with a beautiful outcome.

  • Leah
    on Dec 5, 2018

    Please, where did you find the wind swept tree?

    • Penny
      on Dec 12, 2018

      You might want to try Hobby Lobby. I picked one up that was green in color and my husband sprayed painted it black.

  • Cinamom
    on Jan 21, 2019

    I have a hallway such as this & ANYTHING that is put on the walls tends to get knocked out of place in a matter of time! If I screw anything to the sidewalls it tends to catch clothing, ect. And all that stuff just makes the hallway look smaller. My daughter suggested color blocking. Where I could paint one wall a darker color & if I wanted to I could stencil a side wall. Not sure if I want to try since I like your idea of stenciling the top part of the wall. So maybe I'll paint a chair rail(or stencil one) and put a darker color below? She also mentioned putting sconces on the walls for lighting, they are too high to hit when someone goes down the hall & yet add interest.

    • Judi
      on Mar 14, 2019

      As you stencil the upper wall block out squares and stencil a stand alone stencil inside. You might even put picture frame molding around it.

Join the conversation

2 of 817 comments
  • Lois edaburn
    on May 31, 2019

    Love your stencil on the walls! Do you take orders? How hard was it to do?

  • Debi53
    on May 31, 2019

    Thank you. I'm glad you like it. The stenciling is not difficult, just time consuming if you have an area with lots of doors like my hall. Using two stencils makes the job much easier. One stencil left whole and one that you can cut into smaller pieces that are easier to use in small areas around doors, in corners, and near the ceiling. You will also need very small artist's brushes for touch-ups once you finish. I used a small foam roller-make sure it is almost dry- for the large areas. this goes very quickly. The time comes in when doing the areas around doors and corners. A stencil level is also very handy to make sure your stencil is level and use stencil spray adhesive to help your stencil stick to the wall. At the end of the day wash your stencil with a gentle scrubber to remove excess paint. Dried paint will peel off the stencil. A clean stencil makes the design sharper and cleaner. If you are doing a large area without windows or doors, stenciling is a snap. Areas like my hall just require more patience, but I thing the result is worth it.

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