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How to make use of dead space in hallways

If you’re struggling to find enough storage space in your entrance hall you might need to think creatively about wasted space. Take a look at these ideas, and be inspired by recessed cubbyholes, under-stairs shelving and vertical shoe racks.


Organise the under-stairs space

The cavity under the hall stairs is so often used as a dumping ground for old shoes, bags and sports equipment to gather dust. The owners of this hallway, however, have made a feature out of the space, thanks to the addition of custom-built shelving.

Four neat drawers on the bottom row allow clutter to be stored out of sight, while cubbyholes above ensure a neat and ordered display of books. 

Consider bespoke cupboards

Custom-designed cabinets are often the best way  to make the most of a tricky hallway space, and these cupboards are a practical solution in this compact area. By combining a tall cupboard with two deep drawers and a small surface for popping keys and post, the owners have ensured every bit of space is put to work.

Talk to a joiner to find a bespoke solution for your own home.

Use recessed storage

If you have the opportunity to carve a recessed niche into a wall, this is a great way to get a little extra room in a hallway. Here, a country-style post rack has been set into the panelling, offering storage as well as providing decorative interest.

This is something that’s best factored in at build stage, but a good joiner or builder might be able to create something similar in an existing home. 

Maximise wall space

Coat hooks are common in hallways, but the space above and below is often wasted. If you want to really maximise the area, think about combining hooks with storage boxes above and pull-out drawers below to utilise every last centimetre.

A tall container for storing umbrellas is also a useful addition and can be neatly tucked into a corner.

Looking for hallway inspiration? Browse thousands of hallway photos for ideas.

Build in a seat

Hallways are often used only as a passing place, but if there’s room to factor in a chair or bench, a cosy perch like this is a lovely use of what would otherwise be a dead area. Add a few cushions and you’ve got a reading nook, or somewhere to sit while you wait for other members of the family to get ready!

This custom-designed bench is a lovely example of bespoke joinery, but the idea could be applied just as easily with a regular bench or even a slim sofa or armchair. 

Store shoes vertically

Space is often tight in a hallway, so vertical pull-out drawers like these are a great way to neatly store shoes. Tall units allow for quick access when required, then neatly glide away out of sight when not in use. They’re a much better option than having to scrabble through the bottom of a dark cupboard for the right pair of shoes every morning.

See 11 brilliant ideas for using wasted space in the living room


Choose a bench with storage

A low bench is a good idea in a hallway as a perch for pulling on shoes and boots, but don’t waste the space underneath. By choosing a seat with integrated storage, like this one, you’ll maximise every last drop of floor space, creating a place to neatly tuck outdoor wear.

If built-in storage isn’t possible, then it’s easy to just tuck a few large baskets underneath an existing bench for stashing hats, gloves and shoes. 

Squeeze in a table

If you think you haven’t got space for a console, perhaps it’s time for a rethink. The designers of this narrow hallway have maximised wall space by placing an ultra-slim table in front of a radiator to create a useful surface for keys and post. The open design ensures it doesn’t block heat from the radiator and the mirror above creates a smart focal point.

Create a cosy nook

This unexpected use of an under-stairs space is totally inspired. If you don’t need to use the space for storing coats and shoes, then a reading nook like this one is a lovely addition, transforming a dark, tricky-shaped space into a cosy reading retreat. The little playhouse door to the left is intriguing, too.

This might not be possible in every hallway, but it’s a good reminder to think creatively with the space you do have. 

Fit sliding doors

Traditional cupboard doors that open out into a room are tricky in a narrow hallway, but sliding doors like these solve the problem, allowing access to a storage cupboard without impeding the flow of traffic through the space. As such, they’re a great way to squeeze in a storage cupboard.

Victoria Harrison, Houzz Contributor

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