Fashion is everywhere

Chez Larsson

Hall Shelf


Eeek! Yellow and brown was never my thing and when I got a vanilla hall with a generic brown door I knew at least the yellow had to go QUICKLY. Never mind that other parts of the house still have the original dingy 1954 wall paper but this mid 80’s decor made me sick to my stomach. And no, I don't care that this particular shade of yellow supposedy is all the rage again. Bleah.



Also there was an issue of storage or at least clutter collecting. Wille complained (and he’s not one to complain normally) that there wasn’t anywhere to put keys etc when entering the house. I needed to think of something quickly and didn’t have a whole lot of materials to choose from but I did have the brackets off the old window sill in the kitchen and a left over piece of board from the new kitchen. It’s not solid wood but a piece of melamine covered chip board (I can hear Martin cringing right now) but it would have to do for now. I can always switch it out later. Besides, my plan is to build a radiator cover there later on and then it will all be re-thunk anyway.



So after painting the walls white I cut the board to fit I the space above the radiator and attached it with the brackets. I also added our old bathroom mirror above to reflect the light from the small hall windows. This is probably the darkest corner of the house and the brown ugly doesn’t help much. I’m repainting the door in a lighter color as soon as I can leave it open (Bonus is currently at the beginning of week 4 of 5 weeks of being grounded).



Painting the walls white made a HUGE difference and the shelf serves it’s purpose perfectly. A place to drop coins and keys and to scribble a last minute note.


  • Rebecca (from Canada) says:

    This is my first comment, but I’ve been reading your blog for a while. I just want to say that I’m truly impressed by how many amazing projects you come up with. You should be very proud of yourself for your creativity and inspiration.

  • Siri says:

    Perfect! Crisp and clean!
    That shelf you have there is just what I need for my hallway! But of course the man in the house refuses to drill holes in the plated walls…

  • Nicky says:

    Great improvement! Will you paint the door white or do you think you might change it? It is nice to see how the light reflects in the mirror. It makes the area lighter and bigger.

  • Jane says:

    pretty and functional, love it!

  • I may change it later but I’m going to try painting it first to see if it helps inside and out. Haven’t decided on a color yet, but grey for the outside is a contender.

  • Caroline says:

    I’ve been wondering, if you would feel comfortable letting us know, does Martin read your blog these days? (Since you mentioned him, I thought you might not find the question too impertinent!) I know quite a while back you mentioned that both Wille and Martin read Chez Larsson…and has he seen your new home? I know you all are into design, so it seems only natural that he might be interested. I don’t usually read other comments, so if this has already been discussed, I apologize!

  • I don’t know if Martin still reads my blog. I know he did for a while after we split up. He has been to our new house a few times to help Wille study before exams and we’ve had dinner etc. We’re totally ok with seing each other :).

  • Caroline says:

    Thanks, Benita, I am glad to know that!

  • elisa rathje says:

    i have to agree with willie, my life falls apart when i haven’t got something like this by our entrance! looks much better. x

  • jja says:

    great solution. Somethings imiliar helped me to stop searching my keys every morning…

  • Katy says:

    I like how the brown in the notebox ties in with the brown in the door. A good look however temporary!

  • Sensational!!! Love the way it looks, and the decor accents are simple yet beautiful =).

  • Peta says:

    I just love how white paint can completely change a room!! I’m sure I wrote exactly the same thing about Willie’s room. The brown door almost looks acceptable now, especially with the little “wooden” note paper thingy.

  • strikkelise says:

    Very nice. I’m impressed by all the stuff you’ve managed to do already with your new home.
    The white paint you are using, is it just basic white? I’m asking because I’m starting to get tired of all the different “whites”. We’re told to think that pure white is to hard etc, but all the other whites are wrong in a lot of individual ways 🙂

  • I ALWAYS use pure white, never anything with a tint in it.

  • kirstie says:

    Hmm, are you intentionally tying in the door with the shelf by including a wood effect note holder ? : )
    I see you already have a space to stash a skateboard!

  • Zosia says:

    Small shelf, big difference. Good to see Wille’s long board as well :-).

  • Charlotta Eliasson says:

    Hi Benita,
    I’m a Swede living in Poland and I love your blog. I’m also a big fan of having white crisp in my home. For the past 4 years I have been slowly transforming my very very horrible apartment (alot of dark color and kitchen with OMG, gold and fake marble floor…) Me and my husband are now considering buying a new apartment with the same colors as your hall (dark wooden floors, beige walls, wooden windows in dark dark color, hmm…) Do you think it is possible to paint wooden windows and inside doors? Do you have any ideas what to do with the floor? I would be very thankful for your advice!

  • Erin Kleider says:

    Love the skateboard decor too. You are so clever with spaces. Want to come to my house? I also loved the grass drainer. I don’t know if that would work in my house however. I think we have too many people and do too much hand washing.

  • Caro says:

    This is quintessential Chez Larssen and why I keep reading. Take an unattractive and poorly functioning corner (we all have them) and make it both highly functional and very attractive. And do all that in such a simple way – paint it white, add a shelf made of bits and bobs you have on hand. I find it inspiring.
    Thank-you, many times over.
    PS. I think I may be enjoying your new home as much as you are. More, maybe, because I don’t have to do the work.

  • Dusa says:

    I love how the mirror looks like a window in the first pic and its roundness balances the squareness of the radiator/door/overall space.
    And how is Sir Bonus faring with his ‘entrapment’: have you and Wille been getting a full night’s sleep? LOL.

  • Dee in BC says:

    I love what you are doing witht his house – I’m with you on that dreadful yellow/ beige / bone colour- it needed to be removed asap. Our first house which we purchased in 1995 was that colour throughout-the whole entire house. It was brand new. I also HATE that colour. I’m not a big fan of yellow in most decorating schemes (or clothing) anyway. The realestate sales lady said “it’s easy to repaint -it’s brand new. It will be almost no work at all”- She was correct there.It would be NO work for HER- she wouldn’t have to do it. “Sure , it’s not that hard, you’ve painted before” said the hubby. -It also would be no work for him – he wasn’t planning on doing it -& he sure wasn’t going to pay someone to do what we ( read I ) was perfectly capable of doing in my ( non-existant) spare time. He thought I, alone, by my self, would move all the furniture & repaint- Never mind I don’t have the equipment, we had furniture that would be almost impossible to move ( water bed & china cabinet bolted to the wall – I guess that is movable , just a huge task) & I did have a full time job & we had his relatives visiting us about every 2nd weekend we lived there for the first 3 years ( they weren’t about to help & were insulted to be asked- thank- you- very- much) Also, we had a small child. 5 years after we moved in we added on to the house – hubby wanted a different flooring in the addition, so to keep the addition looking cohesive with the rest of the house the interior was painted – yep- That SAME CRAPPY SHADE OF YELLOW/ BEIGE / BONE!!!3 years after that we moved away & the entire house was still that SAME UGLY COLOUR the day we sold it- We’ve sold our present house. Looked at new houses last week . There is one that is as especfially good price ( more to do with it being incovenient for parents to get their kids to school & the road it’s on could become a major access street in the future) The view is great- the size is good, the cabinetry is lovely, for the price we could ( maybe) live with the inconvenient school access & location- BUT- ( in spite of the fact this is strange & most new houses here are painted in 2 – sometimes 3 complimentary colours )- THE WHOLE ENTIRE, DAMN, 1800 SQ FEET OF INTERIOR IS THAT VERY SAME CRAPPY SHADE OF YELLOW / BONE /BEIGE-I didn’t run away screaming – but it was close.

  • He’s calmed down a bit but the first three weeks were a crazy and almost unbearable meow and scratch fest. Now he seems pretty content with sleeping in the basement but he does still want to go outside. Wille takes him out on the leash every night but he wants more, poor baby.

  • I don’t see why you shouldn’t be able to paint the windows and doors. Unless they are som odd material like plastic ofcourse but as long as it’s wood, MDF, masonite or similar you should be fine. Just prep first by washing, sanding and priming.
    If your floors are wood I’d say keep them if they are in good condition. If not sand them (before moving in!) and varnish them. I’m sure there are stains with bleach out there that can give a lighter tone to the wood floor too if that’s what you are after.

  • Lotta says:

    Thanks for the advice Benita! 🙂

  • Mae says:

    It came out pretty well and problem solved! lol at Dee

  • Maddy says:

    Great post, Dee, I read it out to my friend (who likes wall painting hahaha) and we both laughed.
    Benita, the shelf looks great, the mirror is just right there and I love the peep at Wille’s skateboard hanging there.

  • Alex says:

    Oh, again I love your ideas and how you gain such huge effects and improvements with such little effort and things. And how you constantly go your way of design – mostly white with some coloured spots.
    Whish you could help us with our new flat 🙂
    I think my main problem is, to not let old things go…. so I am having such a mix of colours, materials, and so on, without a fresh, clear and straight look & feel.

  • Jesse Lu says:

    Pray tell, Benita, how do you hang a frameless mirror like that without any brackets showing around the edges? Have you ever explained this before? I have two I am needing to hang and I have no idea how.

  • This mirror came with a hanging thing at the back.