When to Paint the Staircase

Lately, I’ve been helping several clients update their staircases.  You may not realize how much difference the right colors in the right places can make in helping your home feel current and fresh.

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Here’s the “before” state of my client’s staircase and paint color scheme.  Very dull and lifeless, no?  The orange-toned oak looks a bit dated.

 Before Color Consultation

 

By painting the dated oak, we cleaned up the staircase and eliminated the orangey color that was holding this room back.    A new on-trend neutral gives just enough contrast to the updated staircase.

decorologist

 After

 

Here’s another “before” from a different angle:

Before

 

There are times when just the handrail should be painted, or when an almost-black is a better choice than white or off-white.  In this situation, I recommended painting the handrail, newel posts, and edge of the risers (the stairs are carpeted) the same color as the trim and spindle color.   decorologist

After

 

I am finishing up preparations for my Benjamin Moore Color Class this Tuesday night (June 26th) at Kirkland Floor to Ceiling in Nashville.  If you have signed up, I am looking forward to meeting you there!  As of this writing, I have 2 spaces left – if you want to grab those make sure you click on the link to register at the top right hand side of this blog.

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Beth Tippitt
Beth Tippitt
8 years ago

Great post! Would you please share the prep work and paint you suggest for this project to insure wearability since handrails are such a high traffic area? Thanks! Beth

Jennifer Neuman
Jennifer Neuman
8 years ago
Reply to  Beth Tippitt

Yes, I was wondering the exact same thing. Please share.

Christine
Christine
8 years ago

I second Beth’s request for “how-to” info…. in my 1914 house a previous owner painted some of the floors and the stairs and it is all peeling…. don’t want to make this same mistake! Great topic, thank you.

Barbara Jacobs
8 years ago

Nice stairs, Kristie. I wanted to share with you a picture of something I did in my own home some years ago. We have an 1881 house, and I painted a designed-runner on the front stairs.

Dana Tucker
8 years ago

Great post. We are painting a lot of stairs lately too. It makes a huge difference. Love the painted furniture piece in the photo too. 🙂

Barbara
8 years ago

The old oak banisters were so wonderful in their day and look so great painted, now! I love to bring black into the stair case if I can. Saw steps numbers, in an old farm house recently. Really darling!

Paula Van Hoogen
Paula Van Hoogen
8 years ago

I love that you chose the wall color so well to work with the carpet!!!
We did black risers on a bare wood staircase in a house we used to have, it made a boring staircase have character—it had an awful wrought iron railing(I don’t mind iron, but this one was bad). It did improve the look though, just to do those risers. Aren’t stairs a wonderful thing when done with thought??
We made a little Kid’s cubby under the stairs, large enough to accomodate a twin mattress. But it is carpeted and I keep toys & books in there for our 4 yr old gr daughter. It has a little seeded glass window I had made between studs so she can see outside!! Someday would like to have an artist paint a little woodland scene of squirrels, rabbits,etc. to give it a little camping feel. (We are in the mountains) She and all age kids love it!! Soon to have doors 🙂
Besides that—I love this staircase result YOU did Kristie !!!

sonia
8 years ago

I love white staircase…it looks amazing!
I have a customer who wants to redo his staircase and I have to go with brown
Do you have a prefer of brown from Benjamin Moore that you like to use?
Thank you Kristie
Sonia xo

Sheila @SZInteriors
8 years ago

Yup… I so want to paint out the dated oak railing in this home white, but apparently the landlord thinks the orangy colour is new and exciting since this home is only 4 years old! Who does that to a new home?

Cris Angsten
8 years ago

I like that staircase! Looks so new and fresh with two paint tones on it – keeps it interesting, but subtle. 🙂

Tammy
Tammy
8 years ago

I think, if you have an eye for color, it’s really not that hard…

Linda
Linda
5 years ago

I have the same oak handrail and stairs (without carpet). What black paint do you recommend? Do you have to put a finish under the black? Oil or latex? Will painted stairs hold us to wear?

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