Your hallway is the first think you see after a long day’s work, and the first thing guests see when they walk into your home.

[Read more: 7 ways to revamp your kitchen worktops without spending a fortune]

So, it’s important that it gives off a calming and relaxing vibe for you, whilst being interesting and telling new guests something about you.

Here are 7 tips to get that balance just right…

1. Use light colours

To make your hallway as bright and inviting as possible, you should start by painting your walls in light colours. White is a favourite, but you can spice things up with off-whites, blues and greys. Farrow & Ball manufacture this beautiful paint in Cabbage White. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, try a wallpaper with a geometric pattern and metallic panels that will help your hallway look huge. 

2. Add some culture

A light-coloured wall is the perfect backdrop for a statement piece of art, something that never fails to start a conversation. Finding a beautiful painting with personal meaning will give you endless joy and an excuse to walk around little galleries. We recommend something calming, bright, or edgy. 

3. Put down hallway runner

For an easy and cheap way to change the colour of your floor you should add a hallway runner. A runner will add depth to the room, whilst being inviting and providing something for you to sink your feet into after a long day at work. This one from John Lewis is a particularly good choice. The range of colours is exciting and makes a statement, and will make it easier to find furniture that doesn’t clash! The best thing about hallway runners is that they can be easily changed should you want to redecorate.

4. Strategically place a mirror or two

Mirrors are great for adding light and space into your hallway, and for a quick lipstick check before leaving the house. Statement mirrors add a focal point of interest to your hallway whilst opening it up.

5. Keep it organised

Nothing is less aesthetically pleasing than a messy room. A table with a bowl to keep your keys will not only add a decorative touch and sense of order to your hallway, but will also save you running around looking for the house keys in the morning. A glass table with metallic detailing reflects light and adds a sophisticated edge and could be complimented with a metal plate.

[Read more: 14 ways to declutter your home for good]

6. Wallpaper your ceiling

Why not set your hallway apart from everyone else’s and try out autumn’s new trend: wallpapered ceilings? A wallpapered ceiling can either give your house the appearance of having period features or be a statement in and of itself. 

7. Put in a conversation starter

If you follow the tips above, your hallway should be interesting, but it doesn’t hurt to throw in a piece that will never fail to start a conversation. Have you picked up a beautiful souvenir in your travels or taken a hilarious photo with your family? Put it in your hall and it will be the first thing you and your guests see when you walk into the house, giving you something to talk about.