Out of the ordinary
Making an entrance comes down to the detail
It’s often a forgotten space, but if there’s one thing that a recent renovation project by interior designer Paula Gundry has shown, it’s that the hallway is intrinsic to the flow of any home.
When tasked with the refurbishment of a Georgian property in Norwich, you might assume the living room, kitchen or bathrooms would be the priority. But, according to Paula, the hallway is key in setting the tone for the rest of the house. And what a tone has been set!
The existing hallway had all the elements of a fabulous space – high ceilings, big proportions, grand staircase - but it was dated and lacked impact. A complete transformation has taken place; one with carefully considered features, such as the magnificent mural wall.
“It’s an Indian hunting scene, with hunters riding on elephant back, reminiscent of the days of the Raj,” explains Paula. “At first you think its colouring is purely monochrome, but towards the centre you see warm tones of blue, green and umber, and it’s these tones that have been developed within the rest of the hallway in the lamps and subtle edging on the rug, and will ultimately act as a link throughout the entire house.”
And it’s not just about colours; textures play an important role too, from the velum mirror with its convex and distressed silver leaf glass, to the solid brass edging around the door matt. It’s also a marriage of the naturalness of products such as the bespoke 8m woven grass rug, the wool stair runner, the original timber floor that was renovated and oak handrails.
“It’s all in the detail,” says Paula. “A lot of these products aren’t available elsewhere or in the UK, we often bring products in from overseas - the mural was made in France to the exact dimensions of the wall.
“The rooms will flow together; each will have a different feel and personality, whilst tying them in through the colours and textures.
“You have to be considerate when working on an older house - whatever you do needs to add to it, not detract from it. It’s a considerable investment, and the key is creating a timeless room that you will simply love for years to come.”