Mixing up hallway lighting ideas is key to getting this space just right. You want to create the perfect entrance to your home, but let's be honest, hallways are often overlooked when it comes designing and decorating the space.
We want to change that, so that you can witness what gorgeous and practical hallway lighting is, to see how it can brighten up what may be the tiniest space in your home.
So, whether you have dark entrance hall that require an inventive lighting solution or you're searching for a more stylish statement light fixture to be a focal point of your space, we've got you covered with our brightest hallway ideas.
Hallway lighting ideas to illuminate your entryway
When looking at hallway design, you shouldn't take a one-size-fit-all, cookie-cutter approach. Just like for the other spaces in your home, there are three types lighting to consider when lighting a hallway. The first is the ambient lighting. This is the overall light that allows you to use the space, and it functions as good daylight would.
Next comes task lighting. This is the illumination that allows you to perform specific actions. If we were talking kitchens, this might be chopping and mixing; in the living room it could be reading or sewing, for example. In the hall? If it’s big enough, you might have a desk area in which to work, but even in a small hall you might need concentrated light to check your appearance before you leave, for instance, or tie shoelaces.
Finally, there’s feature or accent lighting. This draws attention to a particular aspect of the space. When lighting a hallway that focus could be artwork on the wall, or a mirror, or perhaps a piece of furniture. However, it could also be used to wash light over a wall, for example, creating a decorative effect to add interest to the space.
1. Review the height of your ceiling before you buy
If your hall has a high ceiling, go for suspended lights or a chandelier – traditional or modern – to introduce an impactful focal point in the lofty space. Recessed ceiling lights can be a good solution if the height of the hall isn’t generous, as can scaled-down downlights.
2. Create a focal point with hallway lighting
Let your hallway lighting do the talking with a simple design that catches the eye. A clear shade that shows off the bulbs won't look obtrusive in a small or narrow hallway. The sharp lines and black detailing of this Large Browning Lantern Pendant (opens in new tab) from Neptune makes a statement addition to a modern or classic scheme.
Peter Bowles, MD, Davey Lighting (opens in new tab) advises: 'As there is often little room for furniture, hallways can be rather drab. Interesting light fittings are a great way to add drama and interest and set the tone for the rest of your scheme.'
'An oversize pendant will add a decorative flourish without compromising the space. If you have space for a small console table, a table lamp adds a note of warmth and welcome.'
3. Group singular lights to create height and interest
If your hallway feels too feminine to adopt an industrial look, there are other ways to make your hallway lighting feel edgy without going too far with the idea.
Based on a classic Edison light bulb design, this trio of lights cascades down from the hallway ceiling and is an alternative option is you feel a glass chandelier design is too grandeur. By positioning these lights at the end of a hall, this in turn will also help draw the eye down the space to make it feel bigger.
Combining gold colored brass, hand blown glass and braided fabric coated cabling, you can create a modern hallway idea in minutes - granted your good with the electrical side of things. Don't forget to light any landing areas that you can see from the hallway to avoid having an unwelcoming dark area on show.
And if you do fancy 'grunging up' your girly space, combining this string of lights with a cool, concrete grey hallway paint idea will look great.
4. Choose different light sources to serve different purposes
When it comes to lighting a hallway it's important to think about the atmosphere you're looking to create. You may want a top light for practical, day-to-day use and a table lamp for a warmer, more atmospheric feel when guests come over. The combination of both within a space allows for versatility, while adding interest and texture. Find this similar lights at Original BTC (opens in new tab).
Peter Bowles, MD, Davey Lighting says: 'The hallway is the entrance to your home, so it’s vital to create a warm, inviting feel the minute you step through the door. To avoid a gloomy, dark corridor ensure your lighting comes from several sources.
'A pendant hung at the beginning of the hallway will only throw light down onto that section, so consider the addition of wall lights to create a pool of light running along the corridor.'
5. Use wall lighting to illuminate specific zones
This is one of the best hall lighting ideas for those blessed with a bigger hallway! In addition to adding a touch of sophistication, wall lighting is a great option if you need to illuminate a specific zone – perhaps a coat storage unit or console table. As well as serving a practical purpose, they're a nice alternative if you want to create a statement look but don't have a high enough ceiling for a chandelier or pendant lighting.
Position near a coat rack or shoe storage idea for an easy dash out of the door.
6. Get an industrial look with shade-free lighting
If you want to inject a touch of the industrial look into your hallway, pick out cage pendant lights, something like these John Lewis lights (opens in new tab) would be a good choice.
And if you want to go even further down the industrial route, match them with an exposed brick wall (not as hard to achieve as you might think - just check out our guide to how to create an exposed brick wall).
7. Go eco-chic with a lampshade made from paper
No don't adjust the brightness on your computer or phone screen – you're reading correctly. If you're one many consumers looking for environmentally-conscious brands and homeware – this one's for you.
Paper is a natural material usually made from a wood base, and can be recycled at the end of its life to make more paper-based items. Versatile and familiar, the tactile qualities of paper make it a great addition to stylish, grounded homes and hallways.
8. Add Art-Deco vibes to your hallway with smoked glass
Combining brushed brass with a pentagon-shaped smoked glass dome adorned with a beautiful diamond pattern, this chic ceiling light is guaranteed to bring some old school glamour to your home.
The cut design enhances the luster of the glass and provides a unique light effect in the room giving it a classy Art-Deco feel. that works brilliantly in both a period property or a new-build home.
With its dimmer design, you can create a bright or dim glow, depending on the atmosphere you want to create.
Charlie Bowles, director at Davey Lighting (opens in new tab) explains: 'Once you’ve chosen your fittings, ensure all your lights are controlled separately so you can alter the level of illumination throughout the day. Ensure switches are positioned near doorways and at each level of the stairway to avoid having to walk through darkness, which is particularly key in family homes.'
Add palm plants, metallic accessories and a mirror to create chic speakeasy vibes. We'd personally swap out this round fixture for a beveled rectangular, fan or scalloped mirror design idea.
9. Home office in your hallway? Be careful with lighting
A generously sized hall can be a suitable venue for a home office idea if there’s space going begging and you don’t have the benefit of a separate room or dislike the idea of giving up part of a bedroom or living space.
To provide concentrated light for the desk’s surface, you’ll need a dedicated desk lamp. The rule here is that the bigger the desktop, the taller the lamp needs to be. Those that can be angled are more versatile.
10. Make a statement with lantern lights
The eye-catching effects that can be achieved with lantern lighting are a lovely option for hallways with higher ceilings. Be mindful of choosing something that suits the height of a space and doesn't overwhelm it.
As well as the ceiling light, this design also has a sweet lantern on the chest of drawers too. For a similar hallways lighting try Jim Lawrence (opens in new tab).
11. Maximize light by strategically spacing light fittings
For an effective lighting option in a darker hallway, create a more seamless look with a row of fitted hallway ceiling lights. Whilst subtle and understated, they maximize the light within a space. Then, for more tips on how to lighten a dark hallway, we've got a specialist guide for you!
12. Add a large mirror to enhance your hallway lighting
Two large globe pendant lights light up this vibrant hallway, but this light has been enhanced with the clever placement of a mirror that will reflect the light that they give off, making the room even brighter. Simple, but effective.
Can we also just take a sec to appreciate the indoor plants which brighten up this hallway space with their chlorophyll green hues? The hanging varieties in particular compliment a hallway lighting idea with a long chain, string or cabling.
13. Make a statement with a timeless chandelier
Opt for a dramatic chandelier if you want to make the most of a hallway with high ceilings and a grand staircase. What's important is investing in something that looks refined and will stand the test of time. We love this glitzy unique light from Amara (opens in new tab).
14. Introduce boho chic with a rattan floor lamp
Incorporating hallway lighting made from raffia, bamboo or rattan are perfect for creating an ‘escapist’ trend, with neutral, beachy vibes adding texture and warmth without the heaviness of wood.
If your hallway scheme follows a coastal, boho, retro or Scandi theme – a floor lamp like this will be perfect for making a statement in your entryway. Combine with a jute rug, wooden table and bamboo chair for a coordinated look.
15. Shop for light fittings with cutouts or pretty details
Big isn't always better when it comes to hallway light ideas. It's sometimes that little things that make us stand back in awe. So when shopping for fixtures and fittings, don't always go large. It's important to think of practicality and proportion, especially if you've got a small hallway — or a tall spouse!
Do choose a hallway lighting idea with these intricacies as they'll throw elaborate light patterns that both kids and guests will be impressed by.
This design features an array of crystal effect droplets that cascade downwards for a spiraling effect, shimmering beautifully as they refract the light.
16. Pick hallway lighting in a contrasting color
Make sure your hallway lighting doesn't go unnoticed by picking a striking design in a color that contrasts with the wall paint or hallway wallpaper ideas.
This hallway has been painted in the gorgeous Lulworth Blue (opens in new tab) from Farrow & Ball and this gold light totally pops against it. For a similar light, try Made (opens in new tab).
17. Use sleek wall lighting to create a minimalist look
An effective way of lighting a hallway, sleek wall lights make a great addition to a minimalist-inspired space. Alternatively, they can also be used as spotlights to draw attention to hanging artwork or ornaments on display.
We love these Camillo Lights (opens in new tab) from Christopher Wray but you can find similar, more affordable wall lights at Wayfair (opens in new tab)
18. Choose a steel finish for vintage hallway lighting
If your style is more vintage, opt for hallway lighting with a simple silhouette. A caged-effect steel finish is a great option if you're looking for a statement piece that suits a hardier aesthetic. We love the no frills design of this Davey Lighting Oceanic Pendant (opens in new tab) from Original BTC.
19. Consider a table lamp for a softer finish
If you don't like the idea of statement hallway lighting or want to create a more inviting atmosphere in your hallway, a subtle lampshade that blends into the rest of your scheme is a great alternative. Position on a console table and couple with photo frames or house plants.
A table lamp on a console or side table on which you keep the essentials you need ready to grab when you leave the house can also be a worthy addition to a hall’s task lighting armory.
We love this on-trend Concrete Table Lamp (opens in new tab) from Cox & Cox.
20. Create a luxury feel with a brass finish desk lamp
Add a luxe feel to a dim hallway with a table lamp in a brushed brass finish. Opt for a classic design and simple silhouette if you're looking for a timeless design that will complement any scheme. This Dutchbone Eclipse Desk Lamp (opens in new tab) is available from Houseology.
21. Choose a stand-alone piece that makes a visual impact
In addition to serving a practical function, hallway lighting can also work as a design feature, so why not consider a statement floor lamp that catches the eye on entry? Find these stunning EOS lamp shades (opens in new tab) at Amara.
23. Don't forget to light up a hallway alcove
'Placement is key and traditional standards no longer have to be followed. Statement lighting can be in alcoves and off-set for more visual interest.', says Devin Shaffer, lead interior designer at Decorilla Online Interior Design (opens in new tab).
Where should hallway lights be placed?
'If you have a long hallway, place ceiling lights at either end; this will showcase the elongated space and naturally invite guests into the rest of the home. For an elegant, traditional entryway, consider using a hall lantern or, if you’re looking for a more modern twist, a single ceiling pendant.', says Peter Legg, Lead Designer, där lighting (opens in new tab).
'Layer your lighting scheme to frame interest areas such as console tables or artwork. Should you be short on space, wall lights will help to draw the eye upwards, giving the impression of higher ceilings.'
'The hallway also serves a functional purpose, so don’t forget to introduce task lighting or brighter bulbs in areas where needed. There’s nothing worse than having to tie your shoelaces in another room because you can’t see them properly in the hallway!'
How can I make my hallway lighting look expensive?
Hallway lighting can certainly add value to your entryway space, giving it a luxury and premium feel. Statement lighting fixtures are a fun way to play with style of your home. They’re an unexpected way to add color, texture, and a little drama to a living space. Chandeliers can be used to add a touch of glitz and glamour, a bit of contemporary flair or use them to create a strong focal point in an interior.
Owen Pacey, founder of Renaissance London (opens in new tab)agrees. He says: 'Statement chandeliers are the jewelry of an interior.'
While Martin Waller, founder of Andrew Martin (opens in new tab), explains that table lamps are the real MPV when it comes to hallway design. He says: 'Table lamps with sculptural shapes and bold designs turn your lamps into pieces of art, providing interest even when the lamp is turned off. Use pairs of lamps to accentuate a beautiful sideboard or console table.'
What is the best lighting for a hallway?
'Exposed bulbs are a great way to avoid overcrowding in a narrow hallway. Not only do bare bulbs exude character, but they also add vintage charm. Additionally, exposed bulbs are extremely versatile and will suit most color schemes,' says Kerry Laird, interior designer at Fishpools (opens in new tab).
'If you’re looking to create a statement but don’t have high ceilings for something as grand as a chandelier, why not looking to wall lighting as an alternative? On a practical note, wall lighting is great for illuminating a specific area like a coat hanging space or accessory table,'
'Choose a slim light for smaller hallways as a sleek addition to a minimalist space or to work effectively as a spotlight style to draw attention to hanging pictures and ornaments.'
How can I make my hallway appear brighter?
'A hallway is the first part of your home that anyone will see when they enter, so it's important to make sure it's a true reflection of your personality and style,' says Emma Deterding, founder and creative director, Kelling Designs (opens in new tab).
'To keep a brighter feel, opt for neutral tones on the walls as they'll keep the hall fresh and use a large mirror to help reflect light whilst giving the illusion of space,'
'A pair of matching table lamps will help create symmetry and balance and opting for lampshades and upholstery in bright colors and bold patterns will allow you to bring your personality into the space, whilst setting the mood for the rest of your home.'