Martine McCutcheon's monochrome hallway has us in love, actually

Are you ready for a perfect (interiors) moment? Martine McCutcheon's monochrome hallway is it

Martine McCutcheon attends the SHEIN x Klarna pop up event on April 07, 2022 in London, England.
(Image credit: Getty)

Martine McCutcheon has given us moment after perfect moment over the years, so it makes sense that she's become something of an interiors trendsetter of late.

The actor and singer has been sharing her renovation project with fans on Instagram, and her most recent slew of photos has given everyone a new #1 for their list of hallway ideas.

And, yes, you better believe it's all to do with Martine's oh-so-chic hallway flooring.

Martine McCutcheon's monochrome hallway

'I’m in love with our tiled floor we’ve had done already,' said Martine, captioning a photo of her checkerboard floor in progress.

Despite the constant flurry of builders in and out of the property, and the scent of freshly plastered walls hanging in the air, Martine added: 'Every time I come downstairs I smile [when I see the tiled floor].'

Later, Martine shared a video of herself posing in some gorgeous gowns in the finished hallway – and fans couldn't stop gushing over the 'stunning' and 'amazing' transformation.

Get ready to fall in love with this retro twist on all of your favourite modern hallway ideas:

'Monochromatic tiling patterns came to prominence in the period homes of the Victorian era, as an eye-catching but more affordable and practical alternative to the highly decorated and colourful designs being implemented in upper-class and architectural settings,' says Peter Vann, director of Tiles And Mosaics

'The versatile chequerboard effects have remained popular  ever since, due to their ability to transform narrow spaces and accentuate space.'

Which means, yes, a checkerboard floor is well worth considering if you're trying to figure out how to make a narrow hallway look wider.

Boot room with built in cupboards and rail with coats, black and white tiled floor.

(Image credit: Future PLC)

How to paint a checkerboard floor

Keen to try the look for yourself and see how it fits in among your own white hallway ideas? Well, painting tiles is an easy and cost-effective way to recreate that dynamic checkerboard pattern.

'Plain white tiles can be utterly transformed with paint,' says Annie Sloan. So, to achieve the ever-popular checkerboard look beloved by Martine McCutcheon, you 'simply choose two of your favourite colours and alternate on each tile. It’s super simple, yet super chic.'

Annie recommends using something like the Chalk Paint from the Annie Sloan Home range – although, as tiles are non-porous, it’s important to remember that they will need a longer drying time and curing window than usual.

They will also need finishing with at least two coats of something like Chalk Paint Lacquer. This should protect your new look, even in an active spot like a hallway, without losing any of that bold personality.

How to tile a checkerboard floor

Of course, if you're not too confident in your painting abilities, there is another (and perhaps more obvious) way to achieve the same classic look as the one seen in Martine McCutcheon's hallway.

A front door opening onto a hallway, complete with checkerboard floor tiles

(Image credit: Anna Stathaki/Future PLC)

'Injecting individuality into any home, the UK’s unique fascination with the new and latest styles means modern designs in clever colour combinations that grab all the headlines – and provide an outlet for those that want to stand out and show their individuality,' says Amanda Telford, marketing manager at CTD Tiles.

'It's an achievable look with floor tiles, from a glossy to textured finish, tiles are able to make a lasting impact that work wonderfully with this style.'

Proof that the checkerboard effect isn't going anywhere fast? Tiles And Mosaics just launched a new collection entirely designed to emulate the look, with Peter insisting that its 'timeless appeal makes the checkerboard style perfect for floors and walls, paths and patios, with the intense black and crisp white for an effect that just doesn’t date'.

How to dupe a checkerboard floor

Of course, if you're looking for a really easy way to dupe your own version of Martine McCutcheon's checkerboard hallway, you might want to consider giving vinyl floor stickers a go.

Checkerboard Sheet Vinyl Flooring Lino in Black and White | from £4.95 at Etsy

Checkerboard Sheet Vinyl Flooring Lino in Black and White | from £4.95 at Etsy

Designed for use in kitchens, bathrooms, and hallways, these vinyl stick-on-tiles are hard-wearing, water resistant and come with a textile backing for added comfort and insulation.

Hacking your home has never been easier, eh? We're off to live our best The Queen's Gambit life, just like Martine McCutcheon would want.

Kayleigh Dray
Acting Content Editor

Kayleigh Dray became Ideal Home’s Acting Content Editor in the spring of 2023, and is very excited to get to work. She joins the team after a decade-long career working as a journalist and editor across a number of leading lifestyle brands, both in-house and as a freelancer.