Check out this welcoming entrance hall with a cloakroom

Creative thinking and budget buys have transformed a bland hallway into an inspiring space

After the owners bought their house in 2014, they spent a couple of years updating the rooms. They were delighted when all that stood between them and a finished home was a rather shabby hall.

Limited space upstairs meant that they had never resolved the issue of how to include a cloakroom, something they were keen on. When a friend suggested their hall as an ideal location for a compact second loo, they decided to go for it.

The idea was to use the under-stairs area and, although the owners were sceptical at first, once the cupboard was clutter-free, they could see that it might just work. When they spotted some modular units, it clinched the deal, as it meant the entire suite cost just £500. Tapping into the kitchen's water supply, plus the close proximity of the main external soil pipe, meant no drainage or pipe works were needed.

In the hallway, the owners went for a pale grey shade throughout, with a darker tonal stair wall to add interest. The coordinating grey-washed laminate flooring is ideal for cleaning off muddy footprints. The owners laid the floor themselves, which turned out to be easy, as the boards clicked together. However, the stair and landing carpets were professionally fitted.

With most of the work complete, the owners' focus turned to storage, but the custom unit they wanted was out of their price range. Luckily, they are dab hands at DIY and decided to make their own out of junk-shop finds.

1/4 Welcoming hallway

hallway to stairs and carpet

(Image credit: Future PLC/Lizzie Orme)

Similar personal touches can be found in the cloakroom too and have really added character to the finished space. Now that the entire house is complete, the owners are looking forward to sitting back and enjoying the benefits of their hard work.

Boucle Neutrals range at Cormar Carpets
Laminate flooring
Wall paint
Little Greene

2/4 Storage

storage with shoe rack and drawers

(Image credit: Future PLC/Lizzie Orme)

The owners made their own storage unit from salvaged finds. Searching around, they soon amassed an assortment of old drawers and crates, and it was then simply a matter of making a framework to fit it. It took a while to come up with the right arrangement, but the result is fantastic. Best of all, it only cost around £70, as they reused paint they already had from previous projects.

Storage unit paint
Little Greene

3/4 Cloakroom

bathroom with chalkboard painted wall and commode

(Image credit: Future PLC/Lizzie Orme)

For continuity, the grey scheme was extended into the cloakroom. The owners saved money by recycling marble tiles left over from their bathroom refit, which added a designer look to the budget suite. Chalkboard paint on one wall provides a dramatic contrast to the paler colours of the tiles, and also adds a sense of fun, allowing members of the family to leave amusing notes or doodles for each other.

British Ceramic Tile
Chalkboard paint
Vanity unit, basin and loo

4/4 Second-hand furnishings

bathroom with second hand furnishings and first aid kit

(Image credit: Future PLC/Lizzie Orme)

The owners continued the recycling theme into the cloakroom, using a leftover drawer as a shelf and adding a second-hand cupboard that they customised with window film. Their innovative approach to furnishing the space makes it feel unique and homely, and just goes to show what can be done with even the tiniest of spaces under the stairs.

Window film
Vintage bathroom cupboard

Heather Young

Heather Young has been Ideal Home’s Editor since late 2020, and Editor-In-Chief since 2023. She is an interiors journalist and editor who’s been working for some of the UK’s leading interiors magazines for over 20 years, both in-house and as a freelancer.