16 Aug 2022

Interiors: Design your own stairway to heaven

With Louise Higgins of Aspire Design

Interiors: Design your own stairway to heaven

Stairway by Aspire Design

A staircase can often be an afterthought when it comes to designing our home. However, it has such a big impact on our space that it is worthwhile to give it careful consideration.

When deciding on the design and style of a staircase there are plenty of items to consider such as the type of spindle, scroll, glass, stainless; brackets, newel posts, the use of wrought iron, cut or closed string, open rise treads, floating staircases, spiral staircases, cantilevered floating tread stairs or curved staircases.

Whether you are building a staircase from scratch in your new build, or updating your existing staircase, we have lots of great suggestions here to help ensure you create a wonderful staircase that suits your taste and your home’s style.

Painted Staircase

There are many ways in which you can give your staircase an instant update using paint. You could opt for painting the existing handrail, paint all the spindles, paint just the steps and risers or even create a stair runner paint effect. You can then enjoy the beauty of a stair runner without the upkeep of vacuuming. An ombre paint effect on a staircase can also look stunning. To achieve this look, simply mix two colours, as you move down the lighter shades you add more of the lighter paint colour.

Glass Balustrade

If you want to maximise light in your home, then a glass balustrade is definitely a good choice. Glass balustrades look great when mixed with stainless steel posts and handrails for a contemporary design.

Wrought Iron Staircase

Wrought iron staircases can really enhance a staircase design due to the ability to carefully work the metal to either create something intricate and classic or something bold and contemporary. The beauty of wrought iron is that it is not only visually appealing but also provides great strength. The material is perfect to create handcrafted customised designs to ensure you have a staircase that is unique whilst complementing your home.

Carpet or Stair Runners

Nothing feels better than a cosy carpet underfoot, but you may like to consider a bespoke stair runner instead as this can be used to showcase the architectural detail of your staircase and still be soft underfoot.

A stair runner is a super way to give your existing staircase an instant update. There are many stair runners to choose from, such as striped runners, herringbone runners or classic opulent velvet runners paired with stunning stair rods.

Stair-riser vinyl strips

If you like to try your hand at DIY and want to add some drama to your staircase, then you could consider some decorative stair-riser vinyl strips, which are available in a range of patterns and are easy to apply by simply peeling and sticking DIY decorative strips. These strips are self-adhesive and can be removed easily without damaging the surface. They are perfect for rented homes or to cover up an unsightly old stair. Another idea is to paint the stair-riser and then add some elegant stencilling.

Under stairs storage

Where storage is limited, consider maximising the under stairs area with a clever storage solution. Built-in under-stairs storage enables you to declutter your hallway and store shoes, coats, toys, the vacuum cleaner, and even luggage.

Thanks again for taking the time to read my interiors column and I hope you found the information helpful. Remember, if there is a topic that you would like covered in a future column then please drop me a line as I would be delighted to hear your suggestions.

Louise is a former winner of TV3’s Showhouse Showdown. Contact 086 3999926; email;

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