Making our hallway welcoming & practical: featuring HomeSense


When we went viewing new-build houses to live in, several months ago, the one thing that really grabbed me about the house we fell in love with was the hallway. Huge, spacious and light and a grand staircase. Amazing. My first thought was – a Christmas tree hallway. Perfect! We had to have this house!

The hallway in the home we lived in before was so small that you would knock people over when taking off your shoes, and it only took a few coats to be more than full! So this new one is very practical for our daily family life, as well as all our visitors and guests that come to stay.

However, we had nothing to bring from our old house to furnish it. And as we are having so many family and friends to visit lately, it just lacked any appeal or ‘welcoming feel’ upon opening the front door. It looked bare, empty and boring.

HomeSense kindly sent me some vouchers to spend in one of their many wonderful stores, and so being a HUGE HomeSense fan I gladly took the oppourituty to go shopping to seek out some much needed hallway furniture and accessories. To make the house feel more welcoming and cosy.

The staircase is the main feature in our hallway – and the main, central feature of our home. The rest of the rooms (living room, playroom, study, kitchen, downstairs toilet and downstairs cloakroom) all wrap around it.

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To the left hand side of the stairs is a small, odd-shaped area that faces the downstairs toilet and leads into the kitchen. However this space is perfect for a tub chair. Somewhere to sit to put wellingtons on, or school shoes, or simply to sit and wait for everyone to get their coats on! So for this area under the stairs we selected this brown suede chair from HomeSense (£130) which I love, and have accessorised with some green cushions from Next.

Above the chair we have framed and placed some photographs of our outdoors adventures from our previous home in North Wales, to remind us of our time there.

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The space to the right of the staircase, leads into the living room – with double doors into the room. This area therefore lends itself perfectly to a side/phone table. I love this distressed wooden one we selected from HomeSense (£150). It fits the space perfectly; plus it is practical, with two pull-out drawers for magazines and address books. And I can accessorise the top, with photographs frames, candles and vases – and change them depending on my mood!

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By the front door we have also added a wooden mirror, for essential hat straightening (!) and a wicker basket for our muddy wellingtons after long walks outside in the fields and woods. Plus a welcome mat for our guests to wipe their feet before we give them a big squeeze to say hello!

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I am so thrilled with the room. I cannot wait to get ready here for the school run each morning, to welcome all of our lovely family and friends, and to come back from our family days out. Such a practical yet welcoming space.

Please note: this post was written in collaboration with HomeSense.

Home Etc
Jess Soothill

Jess is a Mother of twins, blogger and writer.

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  1. November 2, 2015 / 10:45 am

    Lovely, lovely, lovely!! I am totally with you on how much a welcoming hallway makes a difference to a house, I think it’s one of the most important spaces (and funnily enough just wrote my Oak Furniture Co post about styling our hallway!). It sounds like such a beautiful light-filled area and I love the bits you’ve chosen from HomeSense Xx

    • Jess
      November 2, 2015 / 11:11 am

      Thanks lovely! Cannot wait to read it – off to look now 🙂 Jess xx

  2. November 2, 2015 / 12:07 pm

    SO lovely! That side table is gorgeous and the whole space is so cosy and welcoming. One of the things I first loved about our house is that it has a ‘Christmas Tree hallway’ ! x

    • Jess
      November 2, 2015 / 1:21 pm

      Thanks! Really pleased with it. Will probably decorate it next year but for this year I’m delighted with it!! 🙂 Yours sounds gorgeous xx

  3. November 2, 2015 / 1:39 pm

    Stunning Jess. I love your hallway. I love the pieces you’ve added. We have a narrow long hall. Very limited with what I can do but it gets us by. Ha ha. Xx

    • Jess
      November 2, 2015 / 1:46 pm

      Ahhh I know I’m so pleased with it. So much space and love hanging around in it ha ha!! Would have been so good when we had the double buggy but that’s gone now! Wellies and coats instead 😉 xx

  4. November 2, 2015 / 4:47 pm

    Your house is so gorgeous Jess and I have major hallway envy now! Love the unit and that you have space for a chair. My hall has a pile of shoes and scooters in one corner! Hee hee xx ps great star, love it xx

    • Jess
      November 4, 2015 / 9:30 pm

      Thanks lovely – the unit is fab and I’m so pleased with it. Yours sounds lovely 🙂 xx

  5. November 2, 2015 / 9:02 pm

    Oooh that is a gorgeous hallway and I am totally jealous, I would love a Christmas tree hallway. Ours is quite pokey and small. Love the side table! x

    • Jess
      November 2, 2015 / 10:01 pm

      Thank you! Funny how we go giddy over Christmas trees isn’t it?? I know. Can’t believe it’s our hallway. So lucky xxx

  6. November 3, 2015 / 11:59 am

    It looks great Jess… I’d love a more open hallway one day, with space for a table etc. Ours is a bit dark and gloomy as it has no windows. Great wellies 🙂

    • Jess
      November 3, 2015 / 12:49 pm

      Thanks – I do like the fact that it is so light. And the pink wellies are a nice new addition 🙂 xx

  7. November 3, 2015 / 2:43 pm

    I love your hallway and the pieces you’ve added! Looks great, so welcoming.

    Ours is thin and not that long, but does have lots of space under the stairs for buggy and shoe storage. Although we really need to get rid of the carpet and have a wooden floor, like yours, as it’s much easier to clean!

    • Jess
      November 4, 2015 / 9:31 pm

      So much easier to clean 🙂 Makes it very practical. Especially with two little ones! xx

  8. November 3, 2015 / 4:56 pm

    Ha love that you have a Christmas tree hallway…. very jealous of that Jess. Your hallway sounds so welcoming and love that you can fit a tub chair in there too. Our hallway is just a boring narrow straight one. Not very interesting at all lol x

    • Jess
      November 3, 2015 / 7:20 pm

      Come round and see! I know, so happy with it…it was love at first sight when we viewed the home xx

  9. November 4, 2015 / 6:35 am

    Oooo this looks fab – what a gorgeous hallway. I love that side table! Is it as thin as it looks we have quite a long hallway and I always think a side table would look lovely but struggle to find one that we wouldn’t have to navigate around! The mirror and chair look fab too. Good choices! Thanks for hosting #HomeEtc

    • Jess
      November 4, 2015 / 8:09 am

      Thanks Lisa 🙂 Yes quite thin – doesn’t stick out much at all. Great for small spaces. Thanks for the lovely comments xx

  10. November 4, 2015 / 4:01 pm

    It looks lovely – that staircase is awesome, and the chair makes it look so much more homely! I’m always at a loss with what to with our hallway; we rent a 60s terrace which has to be about the only house on the estate that hasn’t had the kitchen knocked through into the old huge hall / utility space. It currently just has a fridge and a pushchair! 🙂 #HomeEtc

    • Jess
      November 4, 2015 / 5:48 pm

      Thanks yes I’m so pleased with it. Love the space xx

  11. November 4, 2015 / 6:27 pm

    Looking so lovely and insanely jealous of your Christmas tree hallway 🙂 as we live in a Victorian terrace, our door opens straight to living room. We’ve made it work but wouldn’t mind a bit more space! Fab finds from Homesense btw!

    • Jess
      November 4, 2015 / 7:21 pm

      Thanks love! HomeSense literally is like an Aladdin’s cave! Amazing pieces and could spend HOURS in there 🙂 xx

  12. November 4, 2015 / 8:49 pm

    Love this! We have a large entrace hall at The Barn and now that we have our new front door fitted (post coming soon…) I’m itching to get going on styling it up a bit. Love your picks from HomeSense too – all fabulous! #HomeEtc

    • Jess
      November 4, 2015 / 9:00 pm

      Thanks Michelle – so nice to have a large entrance, when you’ve been used to a small one like our old one!! I bet yours is so inviting. xx

  13. November 4, 2015 / 9:13 pm

    Oh yes, it’s definitely a christmas tree hall! Can’t wait to see it. And love that side table too – but argh! when will I get a Homesense near me 🙂 Thanks for hosting #homeetc xx

    • Jess
      November 4, 2015 / 9:32 pm

      I know. I keep teasing you with their items. Sorry! Move house perhaps?? 😉 LOL xx

  14. November 5, 2015 / 5:40 am

    I viewed houses under the same rules – theChristmas tree hallway! We never ended up moving but totally agree that the hall way is super important. I love that console table and your star accessory #homeect

    • Jess
      November 5, 2015 / 8:13 am

      Thanks Ali, totally important right?! Can’t wait for December now!! xx

  15. November 5, 2015 / 9:49 pm

    This looks so lovely Jess, I’m jealous you have so much space! Our hall is full of stuff to eBay… and a gazillion shoes and coats. Your hall looks so welcoming. Becky x #HomeEtc

    • Jess
      November 7, 2015 / 2:29 pm

      Thanks Becky – I am so happy with it and really pleased with how it looks xx

  16. November 6, 2015 / 11:01 am

    Aw Jess, it is really lovely. The furniture you have chosen goes so well in the space. I love that the table has a platform underneath storing things. Very handy indeed. The chair looks really snug and cosy too.
    We did up our hall a few years ago and it made such a difference to the feel of the house.
    Enjoy your visitors and the run up to Christmas x
    Fionnuala from

    • Jess
      November 6, 2015 / 3:14 pm

      Thanks and you! Lovely to have a finished hallway and nice for the festive period xx

  17. November 6, 2015 / 4:11 pm

    I love it, it’s so stylish! The hallway’s often a forgotten part of the house, but the first thing I always put in is a mirror – totally essential! x

    • Jess
      November 6, 2015 / 7:24 pm

      Totally!! Most important ha ha xx

  18. November 6, 2015 / 4:30 pm

    Gorgeous! Our front door opens into the living room so we use the back door instead. I would love a grand hallway & staircase one day… xx #HomeEtc

    • Jess
      November 6, 2015 / 7:24 pm

      Ahh thanks lovely 🙂 xx

  19. November 6, 2015 / 4:49 pm

    Love, love, love it!!! Am very envious of your lovely hallway 🙂 We don’t have one in the cottage — we have a tiny vestibule off the front door that leads straight into the dining hall. We don’t have any space at all for things like this — it’s fabulous Jess!! Thanks for being such a fab co-host and friend xx #HomeEtc

    • Jess
      November 6, 2015 / 7:24 pm

      Thank you lovely 🙂 Very happy and delighted with it. Perfect for our busy life! 🙂 xx

  20. November 6, 2015 / 10:09 pm

    Such a gorgeous hallway, and I love your photos of it. You’ve styled it beautifully. I had my first visit to a HomeSense store the other week, and could have gone mad in there if it wasn’t for the fact I travelled to it on public transport and so couldn’t transport much home. #HomeEtc

    • Jess
      November 7, 2015 / 2:31 pm

      Yes it is a little like that. Like an Aladdins cave. I love their items and always have a different shopping experience each time 🙂 xx

  21. November 7, 2015 / 11:48 am

    This is gorgeous. Love it. I have always wanted a Christmas Tree hallway too and I love that you have a chair in there. Fab.

    • Jess
      November 7, 2015 / 2:32 pm

      Your hallway and front door is the stuff of dreams!!!!! Such period charm and utterly chic. Love it xx

  22. November 8, 2015 / 7:52 pm

    I’m so jealous of your gorgeously big hall way! Like your old house, our hall way is none existent and it is something I’d love… as well as your Joules Welly Boots xx

    • Jess
      November 8, 2015 / 7:59 pm

      Ahh thanks love. Hopefully come round one day and leave your fabulous shoes in it and join me for a drink!!! 🙂 xx

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