See how a DIYer saved £330 by transforming her hallway with paint and stickers

Using stickers on stair treads created a striking look on a budget
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  • Have you ever had a quote for some decorating work, only to wonder if it’s something you could have turned your hand to yourself? That’s what happened to Danielle Duvall when she got a quote for her hallway makeover – and by doing the work herself, she saved a whopping £330!

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    Danielle, 40, from Nottingham, was initially quoted £450 to decorate her hallway but decided she didn’t want to pay that. Instead, she had a go at the work herself and ended up paying just £120 for her DIY hallway makeover– which is quite a difference.

    ‘I was given a free professional quote for my walls and ceilings to be painted,’ Danielle told money-saving community  ‘I told the decorator that I’d supply the paint and would do all the woodwork myself, but the quote still came back at £450. It’s a lot of money and I just don’t have it to hand out like that, so I decided to do the project myself, with a bit of help from a friend.’

    Painted DIY hallway makeover


    Image credit: Danielle Duvall

    The stairs are one of the first things you see when entering Danielle’s home, so she was keen to make them look nice. ‘I did have carpet on my stairs, but it had started to come away,’ says Danielle.

    ‘The hallway is so cold, the carpet just wouldn’t stay down. Plus, it was a nightmare to keep the stairs clean with people coming in and out.’

    Taking up the carpet left Danielle with some old terracotta-coloured tiles that she was keen to cover up – and it got her thinking about how she could do the project on a budget.

    ‘After browsing eBay for floor and stair tiles, I came across stair riser stickers, which looked a bit different,’ she says. ‘I thought I’d buy some and see how they looked.’

    Painting the stairs

    Image credit: Danielle Duvall

    To start with Danielle needed to give the whole space a lick of paint. ‘I’ve always used magnolia or white gloss before,’ she says, ‘but the woodwork always seems to change to a yellow colour after a while or just looks dirty, so I decided to have a change and go for a cream and light grey colour scheme throughout.’

    Sourcing supplies for the project proved relatively cheap. Danielle picked up paint for the walls and woodwork, and then turned her attention to the stairs, purchasing some light grey floor paint from eBay.

    ‘I painted the walls and ceilings first, then I did all the woodwork,’ she says. ‘That involved scrubbing all the stairs clean of paint, then filling in two stair tiles that were broken with some grip fill. After that, for four nights in a row, I applied one layer of tile paint on all the steps.’

    ‘For projects like this, it’s important to pick the right paint and prepare the area thoroughly,’ she advises. ‘Sand down your stair rail before decorating to ensure the surface is smooth and even, and be sure to wipe everything down with a damp microfibre cloth before getting started.’

    Adding stair risers

    Image credit: Danielle Duvall

    Get the look: Dulux Luxurious Ivory Lace Silk Emulsion paint, £16 for 2.5 litres, Wickes 

    Get the look: SupaDec Industrial Floor Paint in light grey, £13.44 for 1 litre, Amazon

    Having decided she wanted to add a pattern to her stair risers, Danielle bought a pack of Moroccan-style stair riser stickers for just £27.25 on eBay. ‘I measured the stair risers and trimmed down the stickers, before applying them to each step,’ she says.

    Laying floor tiles

    Image credit: Danielle Duvall

    At the bottom of the stairs is a small area that Danielle decided to tile. She chose a striking monochrome design and laid them in just over an hour.

    Buy now: Moroccan floor tiles in Sillia Black, £5.99 for a pack of 11, Studio


    Image credit: Danielle Duvall

    The project took eight days overall, with a five-day break halfway through. ‘There were plenty of challenges along the way, such as covering up paint mistakes and cleaning the dirt off of the stairs and woodwork,’ says Danielle.

    ‘I also had to be mindful of any dust that was trapped inside gaps and holes, and there were lots of marks and imperfections on the walls, which made the painting more difficult.’

    Related: See how a DIY fan transformed an old bookcase with Farrow & Ball Railings

    The finished result is a total transformation of the once-tired hallway, with the new graphic-print stairs very much a stylish entry into Danielle’s home. ‘If I had to do it all again I would definitely give myself more time to get it done,’ she says, ‘but I’m happy with it now it’s finished.’

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