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Natural Light

How to take a hallway from gloom and doom to bright and fresh

See how Sun Tunnels open up new design options for hallways.

Hallway with three sun tunnel skylights, a striped runner rug and decorative wall panels

Hallways are the bane of existence for some homeowners and the ultimate test of creativity for others. Regardless of whether you’re a hallway hater or hallway enthusiast, these high-traffic areas deserve some design love. After all, they’re among the most-used spaces in our homes.

When Ashley Rose, the designer behind the Sugar and Cloth blog, purchased her first fixer upper, she knew the upstairs hallway in the two-story, 1970s modern home would be a challenge. The home’s floor plan has most of the living spaces downstairs and all of the bedrooms upstairs connected by a long hallway.

See the original hallway below.

before hallway

What to do with this long, dark corridor? Take some tips from Rose, who infused her brand of bright, poppy décor into this seemingly lost hallway.

Brighten hallways with Sun Tunnel Skylights

Rose noted during her first walk-through of the 1970s modern style home that it had a natural light 911, so she got to work designing skylights into the upstairs bedrooms and bathrooms. See how she used natural light from skylights to punch up the pastel color scheme in her daughter’s bedroom and create a light-filled textural oasis in the owner’s bedroom.

The upstairs hallway runs down the middle of the home with no access to natural light, and it is long, reaching from the stairwell all the way to the owner’s suite. Rose’s first step was to add three Sun Tunnel skylights, flooding the hallway with light and opening up new design possibilities.

Sun Tunnels consist of a highly reflective aluminum tunnel that connects to a lens mounted on the roof and a diffuser mounted on the ceiling, so they direct natural light right to where it’s needed. The tunnel can be constructed with elbow junctions that allow it to navigate around attic obstructions like rafters and duct work.

Break up the wall

Bedroom and closet doors disrupt the wall on one side of the hallway, and Rose added decorative paneling on the other wall to give it a sense of proportion and create visual rhythm. The panel frames break up the large wall expanse and speak to the striped runner and framed photos.

White walls and ceiling, along with blond wood flooring, amplify the sunlight coming in through the Sun Tunnels

Keep decorative elements simple

There’s a time and a place for hallway photo walls, but Rose took a simplified approach with just four framed photos hung on the upper half of the wall. The artwork is interspersed with three wall mounted light fixtures to guide the way at night. A small ornately framed mirror marks the hall’s end, while also helping the enclosed space feel larger.

Adding ample sunlight helped Rose keep her design aesthetic clean and simple.

Connect with a VELUX Daylight Designer to find out more about using Sun Tunnels in hallways. Schedule your virtual design consultation today.

Next: 10 must-see Sun Tunnel transformations

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