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Dr Dulux: How to Decorate Awkward Spaces

Dr. Dulux takes on the trickiest spaces in your home, from L-shaped room decorating ideas and pitched ceilings all the way to narrow hallway decorating ideas.


Decorating dilemmas in awkward spaces? Solved!

Are you scratching your head for design ideas in a room that’s anything but perfectly square-shaped? From narrow hallways to L-shaped rooms and pitched ceilings, tricky spaces often present a puzzle that’s hard to solve. However, with some easy tips you might be surprised at how effective the results can be, no matter the shape or size of your space. It’s time to bring in the expert, Dr Dulux, to answer your questions and offer decorating ideas for awkward spaces.


Q: Hi Dr Dulux, we need your help! We’ve just bought our first home and it’s a top floor flat. We can't wait to make it our own, the only problem is that there are a lot of awkward spaces. There’s a narrow hallway and one of the rooms has a pitched ceiling. How would you approach these awkward spaces? - Karen, London.

A: Don’t worry, you’re certainly not alone in trying to find decorating ideas for awkward spaces. In fact, your decorating dilemmas are really common! So, with this in mind, here are my solutions for the top three most common tricky spaces.


Narrow hallway decorating ideas


The hallway or corridor through your home is an important space as it’s one you’ll no doubt use several times a day. If it’s narrow and dark it can feel oppressive, and even a bit depressing. The good news is that you can brighten up the smallest of spaces with narrow hallway decorating ideas. First up, you’ve got a blank canvas to play with, so make the most of it with paint. Dulux Light+Space makes any room feel larger and brighter. The illusion of space is created by ingenious technology featuring light-reflective particles that reflect up to twice as much light back into your hallway.

You can also paint dedicated areas of the hallway to detract from the narrow appearance of the walls. For example, paint the wall or a door at the end of the hallway in a contrasting colour. Dulux Feature Wall Matt is a fantastic choice and it’s available in dramatic shades for a hallway colour scheme that makes a real impact. Doing this draws the eyes away from the walls and down the path of the hallway instead. Painting the floor or the doors leading off the hall in a darker shade than the walls also helps to distract from the feeling of narrow space.


Narrow hallway décor


Hallways are often neglected in terms of home decor and, as a result, quite bland. Just because your hall is narrow, it doesn’t mean you can’t decorate it in order to distract focus from the size. Narrow hallway decorating ideas include mirrors, as the best solution for opening up the space with some much-needed light bouncing around. Artwork at the end of the hallway is a great way to draw focus away from the narrow walls and you could even add a colourful floor runner for a pop of brightness.


Pitched ceiling solutions

pitched ceiling white bedroom walls - beige bathroom walls

A pitched ceiling adds a lot of character to a room, but often presents one of those dreaded decorating dilemmas. One of the most effective tricks is to paint the entire room the same colour. This reduces the stark effect of the angles while helping to create a more soothing atmosphere.

A lighter shade, such as Blueberry White, is the way to go to enhance the illusion of space. For a splash of colour, use tonal furniture and contrasting soft accessories. If your pitched ceiling meets a flat horizontal ceiling, you can paint all the walls one colour, except for the flat horizontal ceiling. This works especially well if the flat part of the ceiling is quite wide in proportion to the rest of the room.


L-shaped room decorating ideas

The L-shaped room has certainly given decorators more than a few design headaches. However, on the positive side, it provides a unique opportunity to create a transitional space between two domestic domains. The key is to create a focal point that’s visible from all angles in the room. Using the Dulux Feature Wall range, paint one wall in an eye-popping colour and, hey presto, you have your focal point. Artwork also works well to draw focus to one area.

If you’d rather create a harmonious appeal and tie the whole area together, consider painting the entire room in a single colour. Another idea is to use the same flooring throughout, which helps to join the two spaces and enhance the overall flow of your L-shaped room.


Bonus tips

There are a couple of handy things you can do to ensure you’ve chosen the right decorating ideas for awkward spaces. Download the Dulux Visualizer App to take advantage of new colour picker technology. Simply take a photo or a video of your narrow hallway, pitched ceiling or L-shaped room, choose a colour and tap to see what your choice looks like. To take it one step further, pop down to the hardware store or order Dulux paint testers online, then create colour swatches to hang on your walls for a real-life preview. 

Have you stopped scratching your head? Great! Now, back to work on that amazing design of yours.


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