Making An Entrance – The Art Of a Well-Designed Hallway
Making An Entrance. Just as first impressions count when you enter a room full of people, so do the first impressions count as you enter a house or the entrance to a commercial building.
Colour, texture and symmetry all play a role in setting a scene for how a visitor perceives the space they are entering. It also sets the tone for expectations for the other rooms and spaces within that property. It’s no surprise that the more care and consideration is given to the entrance hall the better received a property generally is. It can also give an innate sense of style and aesthetic direction.
The history of the hall is a complex one which encompasses variations based on geographical location, wealth and timeline but in summary, the hall in Europe has transitioned from a central room where residents would eat, work and sleep to a corridor or space through which more private spaces and rooms are accessed. The first recorded architect to replace multiple connecting rooms with this concept was John Thorpe in 1597. Since that time, over 400 years ago, the hallway has been at the mercy of multiple fashions and styles but has remained a core element of residential house design across the world to the present day.
The Kassavello team have selected some of their favourite showstopping pieces which illustrate the different ways in which a well-designed hallway can create the perfect impression.
Create a striking impression with a luxurious console
Creating symmetry and harmonious décor was the console table’s original purpose, which originated in design in aristocratic mansions and palaces in the late 17th century. Often designed in pairs with matching mirrors and stools, they frequently had only two legs and were attached to the wall with brackets to prevent them from falling over.
Over time these purely decorative pieces developed into more functional items where drawers were used for storage and surfaces to display objet d’art. Today, the console is considered the mainstay of a hallway in much the same way as a sofa in a living room and its style and finish helps to set the aesthetic tone for the rest of the property – be that minimalist, elaborate or quirky.
We adore the harmonious curves of the Sinuous console, seductive and alluring with a gloss black and polished brass finish, this exquisite piece is simultaneously extravagant and magical. A really luxurious interpretation of this historical piece.
Using a bench as a practical alternative to a console
Whilst consoles are often considered the ‘go to’ piece within a hallway, if space allows, then a sumptuous bench seat can provide a wonderful alternative. Doubling up with both practical and aesthetic purpose a bench can be a handy place to sit and take off shoes or for a guest to wait within the entrance area.
In the same way that a console is complemented by artwork, mirrors and lights, then so too can a bench. We love the unusual tapering cross leg design of the Nukie Bench which is inspired by mid-century design and elevated by rich velvet upholstery and carefully placed brass detailing. This really is a statement piece that adds softness and style simultaneously.
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Pairing up to create a symmetrical display
The art of display and dressing is paramount within a hallway. Whether it’s the placement of a table lamp on a console, a treasured ornament or a much-loved painting, pulling together complementary elements that create balance and style using colour, shape and form, is a tried and tested technique that sets the scene for the style within the rest of the property – be that residential or commercial.
Symmetry, whether balanced or symmetrical, can help focus the eye on those exacting decorative elements which elevate an entrance from ordinary to extraordinary. Display columns are perfect pieces to form the foundation for symmetry – be that as a pair (symmetrical) or balanced as a single item against other pieces (asymmetrical).
Our Empire column displays provide a classic but modern feeling which is perfect for classically inspired schemes. Gold plated brass and Nero Marquina marble creates the perfect place to set a sculpture or plant.
A unique twist on the classic grandfather clock
Until the early 20th century, pendulum clocks were the world’s most accurate timekeeping technology. Clocks in a long case such as the grandfather clock served as time standards for households and businesses. It stands to reason then, that they often took pride of place in the hallway of a home or the entrance to an office. Today, grandfather clocks are looked upon nostalgically and are still prevalent as a key focal point upon opening the front door.
They are, however, much more valued for their historical story and antique value than actual timekeeping. For those seeking an irreverent and contemporary twist in their home, then our Grandfather Floor Clock is a really showstopping piece.
With no less than five separate timepieces, the unusual and delicate design is supported by a substantial Calcutta marble base and finished with an intricate gold trim detail. A true heirloom for the future.
Creating drama and accentuating height with a show-stopping chandelier
Our Empire chandelier is inspired by the stunning architecture of the Empire State Building. A masterpiece with an extravagant shape, capable of transforming a space into a truly stunning scenario.
For those fortunate enough to have an architecturally inspired staircase or a breath-taking expanse of ceiling height, then a chandelier such as the Empire will serve to emphasise and exaggerate those proportions with elegance and flair. Exquisite drops of crystal glass contrast perfectly with polished brass, setting timeless luxury and a truly grand welcome into the home.
Mirror becomes art
Mirrors can have wonderful dual purposes in a hallway. The most practical and obvious is the reflection of light, making an often narrow space, seem larger. However, the mirror has come a long way since its invention in the early 19th century and today the shapes, finishes and style of mirrors can offer a beautiful artisan element that rivals that of a wall sculpture or even a painting.
The Zircon wall mirror by Muranti has a geometric and abstract form due to its split shape and encompasses a multitude of beautiful finishes such as polished copper, a clear mirror, and a polygon pattern inset in deep red grey velvet. A truly unique piece that would adorn any console or hallway wall with aplomb.