add wood wallpaper to the kick plates of the stairs. Those rolls are expensive but you would only need one. Not practical with white treads though, it will be stuffed up from black shoe soles in no time.
Simple built-in to create a mudroom and/or storage anywhere from an entry, to kids room or in a laundry room by adding shelves or a deeper bench for sitting. Put drawers under bench or have the seat lift up to store things.
33 Clever Ways To Store Your Shoes - Take up unused space by putting up shelves in the corner of the garage. I'm seeing these for recycling bins in the garage corner with one top shelf to hold the recycling bags, ties marker etc.
It is a great idea if you have a stairway or long hallway. I have one whole wall of pictures of my family in my livingroom like this above the piano. Dream Home,For the Home,Home Sweet Home,There's No Place