Before and After: This Small Hallway Gets a Massive Makeunder

published Apr 5, 2018
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(Image credit: Anne)

Reader Anne’s home featured these somewhat overwhelming teal-shuttered cabinets, and while they provided a ton of storage, they made this petite hallway feel dark and crowded. They also trapped a dark secret in place…

The cabinets were thoroughly installed, making it impossible to remove what lies beneath. The nailed-in wooden wardrobe covered a shabby 33-year-old carpet. There was even a newspaper from 1985 hidden under it!

A time capsule! There may be no better renovation high than removing worn-out, past-its-prime carpeting. At a certain point, there’s simply no cleaning that can be done. Congratulations, Anne!

(Image credit: Anne)

It’s hard to believe that this space once contained all that cabinetry. The new furnishings suit the dimensions perfectly, providing storage, seating, and beauty without the least bit of crowding. The mirror helps reflect light in a relatively dark nook, and the whole thing is so much lovelier than I would expect a hallway to be. Here’s how it came together:

The carpet had to go and the hallway looked much more spacious without the clunky wardrobe. I sanded back the original floorboards added a simple bureau, bench, and mirror. The bureau was a £15 [$21] charity shop bargain. My dad made the bench using scrap wood and hairpin legs from eBay (£45) [$63].

Cheers to all the dads out there that make guest appearances in Before and After posts! Working on a home together seems like a great way to bond and build memories.

Finding a bureau (perhaps what we would call a secretary desk in the US?) for a price that low is a triumph. You know a project is impressively budget-friendly when the priciest item is an IKEA mirror.

(Image credit: Anne)

This floor is so glorious; kudos to Anne for putting in all the work to restore it to its original beauty. That looks like it required a serious amount of sanding. Fortunately, after all that exertion, Anne is satisfied with the results:

It’s so much brighter and spacious.

This hallway has been cleverly converted from a space to pass through into a spot in which it would be a pleasure to linger. In this case, less truly is more!

Thank you, Anne!