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Striking staircases concepts

Here are some innovative ideas for creating outstanding staircases.

Modern homes tend to be more compact, and with land at a premium, duplex townhouses are an obvious choice for developers. Of necessity, duplex homes have staircases linking the two levels.

But a staircase should be more than just a practical element – after all, a staircase is often the first thing you see when entering a home. Stairway design should balance functionality and style. To set the desired tone, it needs to blend with the entrance hall design and possibly the adjacent open plan living area.

There are many designs to choose from, from contemporary wooden stairways to glass floating steps. You just need to find the one that matches your design style and budget.

Trends

Whether you’re renovating an existing staircase, adding a new one to update an old-fashioned entrance hall, or designing from scratch in a new home, you are sure to find a staircase that meets your needs among the latest trends.

Stairs with straight and curved components create exciting designs, allowing you to shape them to fit the space best, and balustrades can make a big impression.

Glass is a popular choice, along with powder coated steel sheeting in standard grey as well as bright and bold oranges and reds. Steel panels can be laser cut into patterns to create interesting light shows.

Straight staircases are often found in smaller entrances, and utilitarian balustrades can make the space look cramped. Glass balustrades can create an open-plan feel, allowing light into the entrance hall and making the space appear roomier.

Glass balustrading or a combination of glass and steel avoids the feel of a closed off space in staircases with a half turn before the landing.

Dramatic steel balustrades are ideal for larger staircase layouts with gallery landings, creating a striking focal point at the entrance.

Light

Enclosed stairwells can be dark and isolated from the rest of the house, so including appropriate lighting is essential.

In an existing home, well-placed sconce wall lights or a stylish pendant light will make the space feel more comfortable at minimal expense.

If you are rewiring as part of a renovation, ask your electrician to install LED strips or floor-mounted downlights to wash light over the stair treads.

Motion sensor lights will come on when someone walks past and go off again after a short time – saving energy in the process.

Revival

Renovating an existing staircase is sustainable and cost-effective. If the stairs are structurally sound, just re-cladding the treads and replacing the cosmetic components can completely change the aesthetic without any building work. A new banister, a fresh coat of paint or a modish stair runner can make a world of difference to your main entrance.

Stair runners are making a comeback, and combining a modern pattern with stylish bannisters will instantly update the space.

Carpets are warm underfoot and come in an infinite range of types and colours. Be sure to choose one that can handle heavy foot traffic.

Dark colours like black, brown and navy runners can dramatically improve a simple stair structure and are also functional.

For a wooden staircase, you need to decide whether to completely carpet the steps or leave some of the wood exposed.

Colour

A fresh colour can make a dark, dated entrance hall feel bright and welcoming. Blues, mid greys and greens create a tranquil ambience, whereas yellows, pinks and purple tones will give you a lift every time you open the front door.

Consider painting your staircase. Black, dark grey and deep navy contrasted with wood tones and white accent features can give a dated staircase a sophisticated modern feel.

For a less dramatic change, paint the staircase skirtings in a contrasting colour, or create depths of tone with matching shades.

Complement your new colour choice with patterned tile risers. They will protect the staircase from scuffing and create a talking point. If tiling isn’t your forte, use adhesive tile patterns that can be removed if you tire of them.

The guidelines provided above, if well implemented, will assist you in having the ideal staircase.

Writer : Sarah-Jane Meyer

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