Painting stairs
Mia Mirelez
February 22, 2013
Hi,

We are going to paint our stairs white (the color of our trim) but I am concerned about durability. It was recommended that we paint polyurethane on them but will that make it so they don't scuff? We also have a dog which I'm sure wont help with the durability issue. Any tips?? Would staining a dark color and then painting the risers be a better option? Any tips would be appreciated :)

Thank you!
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PRO
TJP Designs and Construction LLC
White stairs sound like an ongoing maintenance issue, you may want to reconsider your options!
4 Likes    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:05PM
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charleee
I wouldn't recommend white paint on the stairs. On the risers, yes, stairs, no. But if you decide to try it, I have found Minwax polyurethane to be the best as far as wear is concerned. You'd need at least four coats.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:09PM
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PRO
TJP Designs and Construction LLC
Have you considered stripping the treads down to the bare wood? They may be oak treads under all that paint, and look real sharp (as mentioned above, just paint the risers).
2 Likes    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:15PM
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charleee
Wallpapering the risers is another good look: [houzz=
]
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:17PM
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PRO
Creations Nadia Interior Design
staining a dark color and then painting the risers is a better solution :)))
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:43PM
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Christopher Brack
I painted the risers white and stained the steps on my stairs and installed a roger Oates stair runner on mine. So comfortable underfoot and reversible in a few years time. Could explore something more interesting with the hand rail.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:50PM
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Mia Mirelez
Ok decision made! We will stain the top and paint the risers. BUT, our regular flooring at the top and bottom of stairs is a dark laminate called Saratoga hickory (see pic). Is it ok to have laminate on top and bottom and then stained wood and paint on stairs? Or is that hokey?
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:51PM
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Mia Mirelez
And yes that yucky handrail is already gone! Haha! We actually did a little reconfiguring and the stairs look like this now... You can barely see but we knocked down the wall and added the rail type things.
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 12:57PM
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charleee
It should be fine, try to match the stain the best you can. This may involve mixing different stains to get the look you want.
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 1:20PM
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Christopher Brack
No, think about a stair runner. It might be fine. We have hardwood walnut and stained builders finish on top all connected by a Devine roger Oates stair runner. Love it.
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 1:30PM
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Mia Mirelez
Ok so stain top, paint riser and put a runner? This is scaring me! Haha!
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 1:48PM
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Mia Mirelez
Christopher can you send a pic of that?
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 1:50PM
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Mia Mirelez
How about this type of runner up the stairs. Not brown chevron but maybe a khaki or light bluish green or maybe navy... I like modern simple.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 2:09PM
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charleee
There was an ideabook on geometric runners, I'll attach it. I think it would make me dizzy, personally :))
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 2:11PM
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PRO
Toni Sabatino
This is a fun idea I copied from another houzz discussion instead of standard painted risers. You could do something like this with stained treads as well.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 3:03PM
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Mia Mirelez
This is awesome! Thank you!
2 Likes    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 3:12PM
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Mia Mirelez
Olldbobbi, thanks for the article. I love all those geometric stairway rugs!!!
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 3:14PM
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charleee
You're welcome! I think it will be easier than staining and painting! And quieter, too.
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 3:16PM
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Susan Flowers
A side issue, but will your dog be comfortable with bare finished stairs? ours would only go up by leaning against the wall...so I would add a runner....also, .you can often get laminate trim made for stair treads so you could continue laminate up stairs
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 3:50PM
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daltoncottage
Paint bare wood stairs using a Benjamin Moore floor paint with polyurethane already in it. Has held up wonderfully for 3 years.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 4:05PM
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laura mcleod
We painted ours Ben Moore dark grey, no poly but did mix in a bit of fine sand like material that we got at the paint store so the stairs are not slick. We also wallpapered the risers for some interest (the stairs are right when you walk in the front door) - the paper is super durable and hides all scuffs.

DaltonCottage - love your black paint runner!
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 4:23PM
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Tammy Cody
This reminds me of a post from AshleyAnnPhotography. I love what she did with her stairs. Photo credit to this post: http://ashleyannphotography.com/blog/2012/03/12/the-project-that-never-ended-ended/
    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 4:29PM
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Jordan
The white paint will have a lot of up keep so I would paint the stairs white then add a painted runner down the stairs in a darker color to hide dirt and upkeep in the area with the most traffic. I would also stencil a number on each stair in the white or in a fun pop color.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 10:15PM
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PRO
Maison Pompeii Antiques and Interiors
paint your stair risers white and stain the treads to match the floor. The spindles of the banister should be white and then stain the banister the color of the treads. I think is is pretty much the general consensus.
1 Like    Bookmark   February 22, 2013 at 11:01PM
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nononanna
I have no idea what your style is like but animal prints look great as a stair runner. Sort of glamarous, sort of neutral.
    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 12:11AM
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PRO
Anita Levine Interiors
Put a shoe molding on the side. I think the options are endless. But paint or take the railing off.
I've seen the application in previous post where the middle of the step is painted a color the rest white.
I like that the best.
    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 1:18AM
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nononanna
If you paint the risers, they get scuffed too. The first mark or two drives you crazy,and after a while you just live with it and don't see it. It's the way it goes.
    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 1:25AM
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Mia Mirelez
Thanks for all the feedback everyone! This is so helpful!
1 Like    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 3:45AM
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