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Interior Design 101: How to step up your staircase style

Johannes van Graan Johannes van Graan
NOTTING HILL Modern corridor, hallway & stairs by Landmass London Modern
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When it comes to staircases, it’s usually only the most upscale properties that flaunt colourful and artistic stair designs. For us “normal” folks, staircases are generally designed to function safely and properly.

But this doesn’t mean that your existing (or future) home’s staircase can’t flaunt a more elevated (pun intended) design, does it? Let’s see some creative ways to breathe fresh new style into a staircase while getting inspired by these sassy staircases courtesy of some of our most valued Architects and Interior Designers/Decorators.

1. Style your staircase with: Colour

Office in Goteburg Modern offices & stores by Stair Factory Modern
Stair Factory

Office in Goteburg

Stair Factory

Just like walls (and furniture, and accessories… ), stairs can play a powerful part in a room’s overall colour scheme. For example, they can blend various different tints (Coffee Brown, Peanut Beige… ) to make an eye-catching statement. Or they can introduce a striking new colour into the rest of the room. 

2. Style your staircase with: Contrast

Carlton Hill, Entrance Classic style corridor, hallway and stairs by Roselind Wilson Design Classic
Roselind Wilson Design

Carlton Hill, Entrance

Roselind Wilson Design

Speaking of colour, never overlook the importance of light/dark contrasting and how it can turn any piece (yes, even some simple steps) into a focal point. The more contrast there is between the various light- and dark colours of a staircase, the more it draws the eye. 

3. Style your staircase by covering it

Minimalist interior with chandelier decorated by Versace shades Minimalist corridor, hallway & stairs by Luxury Chandelier Minimalist Copper/Bronze/Brass
Luxury Chandelier

Minimalist interior with chandelier decorated by Versace shades

Luxury Chandelier

Amplify your staircase design with additional materials, like tile. Consider the various different ways different cultures use tiles in their staircase designs (i.e. colourful mosaics for Mediterranean / Mexican styles). 

And don’t forget about carpet, which can also add some new colours and patterns to your staircase. They may not be as trendy as they once were, but carpeted staircases still remain useful and practical for various households (especially those with small children and/or pets). 

4. Style your staircase with: Extra functionality

multiple storage by homify Asian

multiple storage


With the right look, upping a staircase’s functionality (such as adding storage compartments underneath the steps) can also do wonders for its visual style. Or how about turning that wasted-under-the-stairs space into a quirky little reading/working corner? 

5. Style your staircase with: Light

Adding lighting to stairs isn’t only about visual splendour – it’s about being practical! Do you really want to risk somebody tumbling down those steps in the middle of the night? 

6. Style your staircase by opening it

There’s a world of different design styles out there, and some of them prefer a cleaner look. And by that we mean preferring open-riser steps to closed ones. Open steps not only introduce more space into a room, but also alter its design style. That’s because open risers are more conducive to design styles like modern, contemporary, and especially minimalism. 

Perhaps it’s not your staircase’s colour or material that’s the problem – perhaps it’s got the wrong design style? 

7. Style your staircase with: Railings

Upper Falls Condo 603 Classic style corridor, hallway and stairs by Uptic Studios Classic
Uptic Studios

Upper Falls Condo 603

Uptic Studios

Finally, railings are another feature which simultaneously slaps style and safety onto a staircase – if it’s done correctly, of course. Because similar to your staircase, your railing also announces the space’s design style. And that is why it’s imperative that it matches the rest of the room’s décor. 

Just remember: the more detailing you add to your staircase railing (such as intricate wrought-iron designs or ornate wooden ones with elaborate carvings), the more space you need to show it off. Don’t try and squeeze an eye-catching design into a tight corner – it’ll only add a cluttered look.

Whether it’s for upstairs or downstairs, you are sure to love these Easy (and creative) ways to incorporate plants into your home

How are you going to breathe some new style into those steps?
Whitton Drive by GK Architects Ltd Modern

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