Modern hallway wallpaper ideas – 10 contemporary ways to dress your walls

Create a statement entrance to your home with these modern ideas for dressing the walls in your hall

Modern hallway wallpaper ideas
(Image credit: Davide Lovatti / Future)

Are you looking for modern hallway wallpaper ideas? Creating a contemporary decorating scheme is a bit like a love affair, and it’s certainly as much about the heart as it is the head. 

When choosing wallpaper for your hallway ideas, the questions we ask ourselves are: 'Do I love it enough? Is it a perfect match for me? Will it last?'

The variety of hallway wallpaper ideas before us is now so extensive that preliminary research will always pay dividends, especially in such adventurous times for design. New developments and incremental advances in technology are giving designers greater freedom to pursue ideas, shaking off the restrictions imposed by traditional production methods.

Whether your style is colorful or monochrome – or an effortless mix of both, a greater understanding of the practical elements will advise your head, so you can follow your heart.

1. Be bold with a floral focus

Hallway ideas

(Image credit: Future / Jan Baldwin)

If your modern hallway is flooded with natural light you can afford to use a wallpaper with a more dramatic, darker color scheme. This scheme celebrates the resurgence of rich, bold prints by showing them off in a neutral, pared-back setting for an easy-to-live-with look. 

Used in a hallway, this joyful and intricate wallpaper is the perfect choice for creating an eye-catching first impression. A generous arrangement of faux pink hydrangeas echoes the color in the pattern behind.

2. Make a lasting impression with a monochromatic scheme

Modern hallway wallpaper ideas with black and white scheme

(Image credit: Frenchie Cristogatin / Future)

The accent wall is one of the most popular recent trends. It is a classic design device, which draws the eye to a specific area. Marrying the paint color of the walls with the wallpaper will ensure the contrast isn’t too harsh, so the scheme feels relaxing.

Striking, cool and confident, black and white is always a winning combination and will make a dramatic statement in a modern hallway. Create a perfect balance of the two neutrals, by using equal amounts of each.

3. Contrast colors in a small hallway

Modern hallway with patterned paper and green chair

(Image credit: Jan Baldwin / Future)

Clever color combinations are very popular at the moment, perhaps as a counter-reaction to the many tonal greys from the past decade.

Decorate with a palette of blue and green in your small hallway ideas. This combination is often described as the modern monochrome, and it is easy to see why. Where once blue and green were never to be seen together, in fact, these hues sit particularly well together, so offer great scope for pattern mixing. 

'We all experience color differently from one another and each will have an energy that appeals. Work with your instincts, assert your whims, and look at the clothes in your wardrobe for color inspiration for your modern hallway,' advises interior designer, Andrea Maflin.

4. Introduce wood-effect wallpaper

Modern hallway with wood paneling

(Image credit: Nato Welton / Future)

If you love the look of wall panelling, but don't want the commitment or upkeep, then look at wood-effect wallpaper instead. It's often used in architecture to create texture and interest, and here it's been added to create a character feel within a modern room that's limited on architectural detailing. The warmth of the wood used also makes a minimalist decorating scheme instantly more welcoming, too.

5. Trick the eye with realistic wallpaper

An entry table decor idea with white console and blue patterned wallpaper

(Image credit: Paul Raeside)

Gone are the days when buying wallpaper meant choosing between either stripes or floral patterns. ‘Illusion’ wallpaper can now be used to make a real statement, and you can find a design as individual as you are. With new printing techniques, a wide range of trompe l’oeil wallpapers can now be easily found online, and it’s easy to create a bold look, or add a focal point to your scheme. 

‘To protect wallpaper from the high traffic it is a good idea to use some panelling on the lower half of the room, which should be painted in the darker tone of the wallpaper,’ says Joa Studholme, Color Curator at Farrow & Ball.

6. Bring the outdoors in with nature-inspired prints

Modern hallway with green botanical wallpaper and bench

(Image credit: Chris Everard / Future )

Marthe Armitage is truly special in the world of wallpaper. More artist than designer, she’s hand-blocked her botanical wallpapers on the same press since the 1950s. Paired with a painted bench, her Flora print brings the spirit of the summer garden inside.

Note the white background of this wallpaper design – it will bounce lots of light around a small hallway, making it feel as large as possible.

7. Introduce subtle texture

Hallway with neutral textured wallpaper and console

(Image credit: Davide Lovatti / Future )

Wallpaper can be a great way to add further layering to a room – and to create a cozy space that feels warm and welcoming. 

Here, a wallpaper with a fabric-look creates a feeling of enclosed comfort that complements the minimalist and modern hallway aesthetic.

8. Define your hall with bold wallpaper

Dark, coral printed wallpaper ideas in the foreground, with a coral painted room through a doorway in the background.

(Image credit: Future / Jake Curtis)

The transient nature of hallways make them a great place to go bold with your wallpaper ideas. Any space where you spend limited amounts of time means you are less likely to get tired of your color or pattern decisions, so be brave and experiment with wallpaper trends.

For hallway ideas with dramatic impact, go for large scale repeats. Alternatively, murals are having a moment with wallcoverings right now, and halls are the best place for these. Many murals are also available as traditional, super-scaled up wallpapers, too – perfect if you want to cover the whole stretch of a hallway.

9. Go big with oversized florals

Modern hallway with floral wallpaper

(Image credit: Simon Bevan / Future )

Florals are big news for 2022 interiors and can be adapted to suit any space, even if you have a small or are looking for narrow hallway ideas. These new season designs have upped the style stakes and make it easy to work beautiful flowers into your décor.

Start off by thinking about color. The palette you choose will guide your decisions when it comes to choosing floral designs and will act as the basis for pulling your scheme together.

10. Play with pattern and color in a narrow hallway

modern hallway with pattern wallpaper

(Image credit: Emma Lewis / Future)

A hallway landing is often overlooked as a vehicle for adding texture and color, and is often just thought of as a dead space, but it can become a welcoming focal point and add intrigue to your home. 

Most abstract paper won’t look out of place, especially if used with a heady collection of other designs. This geometric design excites and adds interest to the hall like no other. For a more focused design, pick out one color from your chosen paper and use it on doors and woodwork.

What kind of wallpaper is best for a modern hallway?

To discover modern wallpaper that you will not only love, but will want to live with for years to come, spend time gathering samples from different suppliers. Try them out on your walls so you can test how each style works for you. If you are drawn to a particularly vivid or striking paper, think about using it in an entryway, where you can really make an impact. 

Looking to the past for inspiration can help you to achieve original interior styles. New printing techniques have made it easier than ever to create your own designs or choose specific colors and themes, so your wallpaper can be completely personal to you.

Like with paints, the look of wallpaper changes depending on the time of day and light available. Hallways typically have limited natural light available, so before committing, stick up a few A4 size sheets of your choice across the length of the hall. Check how the print and colors look throughout the day to ensure you like them as much at night time as you do with the morning light.

Jennifer Ebert
Jennifer Ebert

Jennifer is the Digital Editor at Homes & Gardens. Having worked in the interiors industry for a number of years, spanning many publications, she now hones her digital prowess on the 'best interiors website' in the world. Multi-skilled, Jennifer has worked in PR and marketing, and the occasional dabble in the social media, commercial and e-commerce space. 

Over the years, she has written about every area of the home, from compiling design houses from some of the best interior designers in the world to sourcing celebrity homes, reviewing appliances and even the odd news story or two.