Attic Entryway Hallway One Room Challenge The Victorian House

One Room Challenge: Week 6 (Front and Back Entry, Stairs, and Hallways – Final Reveal!)

Hey, who needs a distraction right now? Today is reveal day for the Fall 2016 One Room Challenge! Let’s get into it.

I have been sharing my progress over the past six weeks as I’ve worked on making over our front entry, up the stairs and down the second and third floor hallways, and then down the other stairway and out the back door. There were major setbacks (hello, serious plumbing problems), but we’ve also made huge progress. These spaces touch every other room in our home, and the entire house feels more polished now that they’re (mostly) done.

Front Entryway

Front Entry

Let’s begin with the front entry, which needed the least amount of work. The walls were cream when we moved in and I had painted them a silvery blue a couple of years ago, but I wasn’t completely happy with the color. A fresh coat of pink paint (Dutch Boy Sandstone Quarry, 408-2DB) went a long way here. The color choice was driven by my inspiration, the sandstone of India’s Hawa Mahal in Jaipur.

Oak-Paneled Victorian Staircase and Front Entry with Curved Window | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

The gaslight-style fixture has been replaced with a modern lantern from Lamps Plus. Brass! Quartz! I’m into it. Then above the door, I replaced the red exit light with a simple white globe. Is it weird to miss the bizarre old EXIT light? We still have it and could swap it back out again. I sort of miss the way it would make our house glow red like a bordello.

Front Entry Details | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

The old rim lock on the front door had been temperamental for a while, and it finally broke just as I was about to work on the front entry. Nice timing! I had to bore some new holes in both the door and frame for the Nostalgic Warehouse deadbolt, and the new oval door knob is using the existing mortise.

Our IKEA sideboard continues to work well for us (inside are shoes, hats, gloves, etc.), but the single lamp on top has been replaced by a matching pair by Visual Comfort from ATG. That beautiful faux-shagreen tray normally holds mail as it comes in, but a stack of books is prettier to look at than a stack of mail, eh?

Front Entry Sideboard | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

We have an antique hall tree on the wall, but it’s useful to have that freestanding coat rack in the opposite corner too. A boot tray hides out beneath the sideboard for wet/muddy/snowy footwear. I want a pretty entry, but it has to function for our family of five.

Victorian Hall Tree | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Making it Lovely's Front Entry for the One Room Challenge

The copper chair is by Blu Dot and we’ve had it for a while, I just hadn’t written about it yet. It has a living finish, so the metal will patina over time (and has already started). I would have loved to go with a fabric chair, but this one will stand up to the kids and even improve with their abuse.

Victorian Wooden Staircase | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

The semi-antique rug has been here for a while too. The basics of this entry were in place and I felt good about most of the choices. Including the space as part of my One Room Challenge was more about tweaking and perfecting than a complete overhaul. I saved that for the other areas that needed more help!

Victorian Front Screen Door | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Beth from South Loop Loft came over a few nights ago and we played around with some of the styling throughout. She brought an amazing black mirror I’d had my eye on that you’ll see in the second floor hall, and she surprised me with the black candleholder you see poking out from behind the flowers. The perfect masculine counterpoint to the more feminine elements elsewhere.

Queen Anne Victorian Front Entry | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

I had planned on pairing the ‘Mask’ art by Jennifer Ament on the far wall with a more classical Thomas Gainsborough print, but in the end I replaced it with an abstract painting I bought years ago from Michelle Armas. The Gainsborough was moved to the top of the stairs, and I like the way the folds of the pink linen shade from The Shade Store mimic the folds of the dress in the painting.

Victorian Oak Paneling Entry and Stairway | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Pink Roman Shade, Original Victorian Wooden Window, Thomas Gainsborough Print | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Ready to see more?

Victorian Stairway with Oak Wood Paneling | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Oh, there’s more.

Back Entryway

The Back Entry

The textured plaster walls in the back entry and stairway from the basement all the way up to the second floor were dingy and cracked. We hired Signature Look Painting and Decorating to repair, skim coat, and paint them, and it all looked great! Then we had to cut holes in our lovely new smooth walls to investigate a plumbing leak. Not so great.

Back Stairway, Torn Apart, and a Cracked Plumbing Stack | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Add to that some stairs that were in need of more than a cleaning and a coat of paint after we removed the old carpeting, and the back stairway is just not finished. We have a new plumbing stack, several steps have already been replaced, we’re ripping up and replacing the wood on the landing, and hopefully soon we can move on and get to the fun part. Everything will eventually look like so.

Karastan Antelope Print Runners, Black and White Stairs | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Our Victorian has front and back stairs and we did finish the front, so you’ll see more of that amazing Karastan antelope print carpeting in a moment.

The walls are painted in Dutch Boy White Linen (007W), a soft creamy white, and the windows have pink linen roman shades from The Shade Store again. There’s a mirrored sconce from AllModern just above the back door and a tassel sconce by Crystorama on the second landing to match the others in the second floor hallway. I added black chandelier shades to both.

Sconces with Black Chandelier Shades | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

We’ll hang a black pleated pendant shade from AllModern in the back entry after its repairs are finished.

Black Pleated Pendant Shade from AllModern | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

I’m excited about getting the pleats I had wanted, but I don’t think it’s going to mix well with sawdust and plaster dust! Better to wait a bit.

Third Floor Hallway

Third Floor Hallway

Take those back stairs all the way up, ignoring the new holes and general awfulness that has happened, and you end up in the third floor hallway. Behold! Many doors, painted black (Dutch Boy Authentic Black, 437-7DB).

There were 14 doors throughout the second and third floor halls, each taking between 3-5 hours for repairs, prep, priming, and painting. The ones up here are each different, but fresh paint and new brass hardware from Nostalgic Warehouse and House of Antique Hardware unify them.

Black Painted Doors with Brass Hardware from Nostalgic Warehouse | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

I would like to replace that carpet, but it’s not a priority. The other side of the hall has space for an old IKEA Effektiv bookcase, which is filled with kids’ toys (their playroom is nearby). The architecture isn’t as interesting up here as it is elsewhere in the house, so I went with a simple brass sconce and I tried my hand at a gallery wall outside of the bathroom. The art is a mix of old and new, mostly from South Loop Loft and Artfully Walls.

Third Floor Hallway | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Hand-Painted Bathroom Floor | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Oh what fun it will be to destroy my hand-painted floork there! Plumbing, you are the worst. Well, maybe electrical issues are the worst? I don’t know. We’ve had both! Quick, let’s look at something pretty. Another faux-shagreen tray, a cute little dog, and Jill Rosenwald’s Versailles coping bowl, customized in pink.

Faux Shagreen Tray, Ceramic Bowl and Dog Figure | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

All right, down the front stairs to the second floor. That Karastan antelope carpet is something, eh?

Antelope Print Stair Runner Rug | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

So good. As is the wallpaper you’re about to see.

Second Floor Hallway

Second Floor Hallway

The hallway is not completely finished, but it’s far enough along that you can get a sense of it. Please pardon any dust I didn’t get to before taking photos — it has been a construction zone for weeks.

Black Doors, Tourbillon Farrow & Ball Wallpaper, Victorian Hallway | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

The radiator is on wood blocks to protect the floor; those will be removed after it has been reconnected. Above is another tassel and rope sconce from Crystorama on Farrow & Ball’s Tourbillon wallpaper in pink.

Brass Rope and Tassel Crystorama Sconce on Pink Farrow & Ball Wallpaper | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Opposite the radiator are the stairs. They looked like this not too long ago, so I’m feeling pretty chuffed about how they turned out.

Stairs' Progress | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Brandon ripped out the old carpet and staples, then I cleaned and prepped the stairs before painting them – black treads with white risers. Overall, it wasn’t the easiest thing to do, but it’s so worth it in the end. The other stairway will get there too. Soon.

Antelope Print Stair Runner Rug | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Down the other side of the hall, the wallpaper has not all been hung yet. This hall has been through so much in our three years though! A quick refresher…

Hallway Changes Over Three Years

So much better now. A new drywall ceiling has been dropped down a few inches below the old plaster one to cover conduit piping from our home’s rewiring, and our brass Schoolhouse Electric fixtures are back up.

Wallpapered Hallway in Progress | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

I have two runners from Annie Selke’s Dash & Albert, but the other is still in its packaging since we haven’t finished working up here. That white dresser from Joss & Main replaces the built-in storage that used to divide the hall. Above is the mirror I mentioned earlier from South Loop Loft, along with a miniature portrait from Chairish, a brass bug, a vintage blue and white jar with a plant, and a wee brass lamp from Bellacor.

Vintage Mirror from South Loop Loft, Arteriors Brass Grasshopper, Chairish Vintage Portrait, Bellacor Visual Comfort Tiny Terri Brass Lamp, Joss & Main Dresser | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

White Dresser from Joss & Main, Black Octagonal Mirror from South Loop Loft, Runner Rug from Dash & Albert, Tourbillon Wallpaper by Farrow & Ball | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

There’s more to be done, but I’m pretty happy.

Looking Toward the Bedroom from the Wallpapered Hall | Making it Lovely, One Room Challenge

Thank you to Linda at Calling it Home for organizing this event and inviting me to participate again, and thank you to House Beautiful for your partnership and coverage. I’m also grateful for the support of my One Room Challenge sponsors, and for the opportunity to work alongside the other participants, each of whom are listed below.

And thank you for following along! It has been a hectic six weeks. I have so much more to go into about the behind-the-scenes madness and the back stairway is still a mess, but I’m thrilled with where we ended up. The house is closer than ever to my vision for it, and that feels amazing.

Follow along with the One Room Challenge participants!

One Room Challenge• Jana Bek • Chris Loves Julia • Shannon Claire • Coco.Kelley • The Curated House • Driven by Décor • The English Room • From the Right Bank • Sherry Hart • Hi Sugarplum • House of Jade • Hunted Interior • The Makerista • Making it Lovely • Marcus Design • Pencil & Paper Co. • Megan Pflug • Place of My Taste • Suburban B’s • Waiting on Martha • Media Partner House Beautiful • TM by CIH

My One Room Challenge Sponsors

Thank you to the following sponsors for generously providing product.
• AllModern • ATG • Bellacor • Chairish • Crystorama • Dash & Albert • Dutch Boy • Farrow & Ball • Jill Rosenweld • Joss & Main • Karastan • Lamps Plus • Nostalgic Warehouse and House of Antique Hardware • Schoolhouse Electric • South Loop Loft • The Shade Store

My One Room Challenge Posts

Follow along from the beginning!
• Week 1: The Before Shots • Week 2: The Design Plan • Week 3: Work Very Much in Progress • Week 4: Those Stairs, That Hall • Week 5: When it Rains, it Pours • Weed 6: Final Reveal!

Sources & Paint ColorsNeed design help? Let's work together.

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  • sue
    November 9, 2016 at 12:59 pm

    wowsers! it was a little hard to fully appreciate the scope of your undertaking before… but this puts it all in perspective! such a triumph! the wallpaper & the antelope runner are such brilliant choices in this home & i really, really, really want to steal that mirror! such an achievement, brava!!!

  • Emily
    November 9, 2016 at 1:10 pm

    Wow! You accomplished so much. Really really lovely and I love how your choices work beautifully with the bones of the home.

  • Marty Oravetz
    November 9, 2016 at 1:19 pm

    Oh wow, so gorgeous. I love everything. Stunning is all I can say.

  • Danna
    November 9, 2016 at 1:29 pm

    Love the white trim, black doors and pink paper! Looks so fresh! Crazy good carpet on the stairs! I want it!

  • Shauna Roux
    November 9, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    Truly you are making it lovely. Thank you, I needed this “distraction”.

  • c2
    November 9, 2016 at 1:36 pm

    Sigh….it’s those tiny details that draw me back to you each time I peek…the white corner edge mouldings on the upstairs hallway bunkering the J&M 6-drawer dresser with the cricket perched upon it! The subtle warmth that melts the Indian- sunset blush paint colours (and wallpaper treatments) with the toasty browns of woods and tickling surprise of a faux antelope runner! As always, you create a sense of history and great- story- ahead with your designing endeavors! Thanks for the well done photos also… cheers! (;

  • Cassie Bustamante
    November 9, 2016 at 1:40 pm

    those stairs are incredible and i want to pet them! :) love the entry and i love that you maintained the richness of the wood. the new lighting and the copper chair really stand out!

  • Vicki Maiorano
    November 9, 2016 at 1:48 pm

    Absolutely amazing. The runner, the wall colour, wallpaper, styling!! I’d love to see how you transition from the runner to the landing. I’m wondering how that looks.

  • Victoria
    November 9, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    LOVE the wallpaper! And the stair runner is to die for.
    Can we see the still to be worked on bits too? What you’ve worked around and what needs doing.

  • lauralou
    November 9, 2016 at 2:11 pm

    Oh, Nicole, it looks amazing! Sometimes I look at your idea boards with everything in pieces, and I’m totally unsure. then you put it all together, and I love it. You have such vision! (thanks for the distraction – I needed it)

  • Tee @ Beauteeful Living
    November 9, 2016 at 2:18 pm

    What incredibly beautiful hallways you have. Such character in your home. Congrats on a job well done!

  • Johanna
    November 9, 2016 at 2:31 pm

    Gorgeous, gorgeous! It came together beautifully. Can’t wait to see the back entry, too.

  • Kari
    November 9, 2016 at 2:34 pm

    Love it! All this ridiculous hard work is going to make your whole home feel FINISHED, even when there’s more work to do. Gorgeous!

  • Emily Clark-Nimz
    November 9, 2016 at 2:52 pm

    As always, your home and design choices are stunning. Wonderful work. Take a well-deserved break!! :)

  • Melanie
    November 9, 2016 at 5:02 pm

    I love it; really really good work. Hope you can take a break for a while! It is all so stunning; those transoms, that trim, and all your design choices; awesome.

  • judy
    November 9, 2016 at 5:10 pm

    Love it love love it! You are not only the Lady of the Lovely…Creations ..but your house no matter how “decorate-ry”it always looks like a happy cozy comfortable home. You are a genius!

  • Kyla @HouseOfHipsters
    November 9, 2016 at 5:14 pm

    Amazing! Absolutely stunning! That carpet is on point and everything from South Loop Loft is perfection. *slow clap standing up*

  • Jana Bek
    November 9, 2016 at 6:12 pm

    Nicole! I’ve been awaiting your reveal because these areas are so easily overlooked & I could not wait to see your transformations! So much welcoming warmth and fun details, bravo on rounding out your beautiful abode!

  • Merlyn
    November 9, 2016 at 6:16 pm

    Just an unbelievable amount of unglamorous hard work went into making this ORC a success. Then you added fresh colors in paint, wallcovering and fabric, the antelope runner, and period hardware for a cohesive flow throughout – – indeed “making it lovely.”

  • Natasha Meininger
    November 9, 2016 at 6:18 pm

    You killed it! I am at once jealous (that runner!!) and insanely inspired. Really beautiful work! I’m sure you all are loving living in it!

  • Dee
    November 9, 2016 at 7:44 pm

    Oh my God, in all the sneak peeks the wallpaper and runner were not hits with me, I really couldn’t picture them in a space. But WOW. That picture of the paper in the hallway literally took my breath away. It is so quiet and stunning. Congratulations on a job well done!!!

  • Cassandra LaValle
    November 10, 2016 at 12:14 am

    dang girl – you did a LOT! i reallllllly love the soft pink wallpaper in those hallways! and the carpeted stairs – hubba hubba. love that dresser + styling too! i feel like hallways might be an ORC first? let’s hope you’ve started a trend! love seeing so much of your home in these photos!! xo

  • LizzieLivingPretty
    November 10, 2016 at 3:38 am

    Love everything you’ve done so far, and honestly I’m impressed you pulled off as much as you did. It all looks great!

  • Jody
    November 10, 2016 at 5:18 am

    I come back to your blog again and again because you have a way of truly complementing your existing spaces with unique and beautiful design. Thank you for the inspiration. So well done!

  • sherry hart
    November 10, 2016 at 5:53 am

    Man you have come a long way girl! That hallway with the pink wallpaper is everything:) The Karastan carpet and all the styling is perfection! You were definitely busy these last 6 weeks and I know you are happy for the push to get it done!

  • gigi
    November 10, 2016 at 5:57 am

    What you have accomplished in six weeks is amazing.

  • Marcie Millholland
    November 10, 2016 at 7:13 am

    This incredible, amazing, gorgeous. having restored an old home ( a pretty lady over 100 years ago) I know about surprise plumbing issues and such so hats off to you. Not only are you restoring you are so stylish and gorgeous. How nice to tie all of that together. I love it and I’ll be reading your blog from now on too!

  • Home Glow Design
    November 10, 2016 at 7:57 am

    What HUGE undertaking, with very impressive results. Beautiful.

  • franki
    November 10, 2016 at 8:08 am

    INCREDIBLE!!! Your home is truly a “show piece HOME!!” Your lighting….wow!!!! franki

  • megan
    November 10, 2016 at 8:50 am

    This is amazing. The stairway carpet you choose is so perfect.

  • doodletllc
    November 10, 2016 at 11:37 am

    I am absolutely in awe…the brass fixtures, the paint, the wallpaper and then the runner…I actually breathed in an OHHH…stunning with spectacular choices and vision.

  • Caitlin Kunzle
    November 10, 2016 at 12:23 pm

    Nicole, everything looks SO GOOD!!!! I absolutely love it!!

  • kristinahoyle85
    November 10, 2016 at 12:29 pm

    I am in love with that wallpaper in the hallway and the black doors are beautiful! Great job!!!

  • Claudia
    November 10, 2016 at 1:15 pm

    Very beautiful! I especially love that stair carpet…love the black doors too. Just all of it, nice job

  • Sarah Stone
    November 10, 2016 at 2:33 pm

    Wow, your hallways rock! It’s nice to see the transformation through the years. We bought an old half timbered tudor a few months ago, and this gives me hope of what our house could someday be. I love how you always pay homage to the style of your home, while making it modern and functional for your family. I was noticing how beautiful your radiators are, I’ve never seen decorative ones before! But, if on’es disconnected, doesn’t that mean your whole house is? Aren’t you guys freezing!?

  • Chloe Weil
    November 10, 2016 at 5:11 pm

    Wow! It’s so hard to tell how much time and effort goes into a home renovation, and it’s mind boggling to see what a transformation you accomplished! Gorgeous!

  • Amanda Louise Interiors
    November 10, 2016 at 5:31 pm

    I love it so so much! The lighting combo is perfection. SO gorgeous. XO, Amanda Louise

  • Kathy Eaton
    November 10, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    Fabulous! I enjoyed every pic. The runner is the bomb, well done.

  • Danielle
    November 10, 2016 at 8:49 pm

    Beautiful! You have such a great idea for styling and all the details just come together. Bravo!

  • Vanessa
    November 11, 2016 at 4:31 am

    Your post is a welcome distraction from that strange man with orange skin and hair who will be your president even in the Southern Hemisphere. I’m still in awe of your ability to use pink paint – I love it in your place but cannot contemplate anymore in a house full of girls. Unfortunately pink does not remind me of an Indian landmark rather more of my adolescence in the eighties and nineties (the past is a foreign country ) However, I’m truly inspired by the colour ways on your upper floors b/c it reflects my usual palette but with something inspired like that antelope runner. Keep it up – I work full time so your decorating activities are a reference guide for me. Keep it up!

  • Emelia
    November 11, 2016 at 9:57 am

    Your eye for things is impeccable! I would have never picked out that fawn carpet in a million years, yet looking at your stairs I LOVE it!

  • Celeste
    November 11, 2016 at 1:11 pm

    Excellent work! Your vision came together BEAUTIFULLY and I have to admit that this is one of my favorite spaces in your home. I think, maybe, that’s because of how satisfying the transformation has been. You are so smart about adding storage and considering not just what looks nice, but the needs of your family. It’s obvious you put a lot of thought into form and function, and it’s inspiring me!

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  • Vanessa Bailey
    November 11, 2016 at 2:46 pm

    So nicely done Nicole!

  • Allison
    November 11, 2016 at 5:56 pm

    That wallpaper is divine! And the stairs are stunning.

    Thank you. My soul needed something pretty to look at today. Wonderful job!

  • Jessica
    November 11, 2016 at 7:30 pm

    I am obsessed with that antelope carpet. So unique. Well done!!

  • Clarissa
    November 13, 2016 at 3:13 pm

    Nicole you are so talented! Your home is so beautiful, elegant and warm! Is there any way you can share links for the gallery wall? I’m working on one but it’s not easy.

  • Lori
    November 14, 2016 at 1:24 am

    Having grown up in a turn of the century home I can appreciate all the unexpected twists and turns that constantly pop up. It takes someone with vision AND a great deal of persistence to pull off any small project let alone one of this large a scale. What a gem of a house you have wrought!

  • Norma | The House that Will
    November 14, 2016 at 10:01 am

    I *love* how you pulled everything together, especially working with the original woodwork in your beautiful historic home. I love the pink/brown/black/brass colour combo and the mix of patterns. And the sconces are BEAUTIFUL! I would feel pretty pleased with myself if I could come home to an entry way like that every day. :)

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  • Amy
    November 14, 2016 at 3:49 pm

    The second floor hallway redo? Wow. What a huge difference. Gorgeous space!!!

  • Linda
    November 14, 2016 at 5:53 pm

    I am so impressed. I know how hard you worked, and these photos don’t even begin to show the back-breaking work. I love all of your choices, I usually do, and am so happy that half of your home was covered in this challenge….JK. Looks like you will have another bathroom floor to re-paint? Hope you are able to relax. Excellent job. Oh, so jealous of the carpet.

  • Jen @ Noting Grace
    November 15, 2016 at 9:42 am

    This is such a stunning reveal! I am seriously swooning over this staircase – your home is absolutely beautiful! All your hard work paid off – congrats!

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  • Laura
    April 17, 2018 at 12:21 pm

    Hi Nicole,
    I am a long time follower and love your style! I wanted to ask about your front stairs. Did you ever consider using a stair runner on your front stairs? Do you find the wood stairs slippery at all? What are some runners you would use on a wooden staircase? My current runner needs to be replaced and I am considering leaving the stairs bare. But still very undecided.
    Thank you!

  • Sketchy - Making it Lovely
    June 6, 2018 at 10:39 am

    […] here? Young kids touch the walls when going up and down stairs. I would have loved to continue the wallpaper from the hallway on the second floor down the stairway, but it would have a gross line of dirt at kid-height in no […]

  • Our Basement Laundry Room Makeover - Making it Lovely
    November 28, 2018 at 1:22 pm

    […] I painted all of the doors on the second and third floors black, and I liked the idea of continuing that downstairs. I had initially thought I would choose laminate counters with a marble or soapstone look, but ended up going with wooden countertops inspired by elements elsewhere in our house. With those two pieces of the design puzzle decided upon, I thought black would be the best choice for the washer and dryer set. […]

  • Painted Stairs and Entryway Makeover - Making it Lovely
    March 6, 2019 at 11:24 am

    […] walls and ceiling a couple of years ago when I thought I was going to include this area as part of my One Room Challenge. (I did the front entryway and third floor hall, but only partially worked on the back stairway.) […]