9 Creative Painted Staircase Ideas
Stairs don’t have to be just for navigating between floors. Make them a stylish element in your home with these bold and beautiful painting ideas.
1. Complement the Setting
Take a very utilitarian part of your home, the staircase, and transform it with fresh and creative painting ideas. Try painting the risers of your stairs to complement your home’s overall environment. Whether your color palette consists of bright, vivid colors or an all-white scheme, match it with a similar intensity of vibrant shades or pastels.
For a more eye-catching look, try using a rainbow of hues on the stair risers. This multi-colored approach may seem like you have to spend a lot of money, but you don’t. Since you’re painting only a small area, investing in full cans of paint isn’t necessary. Simply buy samples of paint. They are typically a half-pint or pint in size and cost between $5-$10 at your local home improvement store.
2. Add a Little Love to Your Stairs
When it comes down to it, paint is probably the easiest way to transform a worn out set of steps. For a bold, striking look, go for contrasting shades like using a dark color against a lighter-colored base. Have fun by getting creative with stencils or stamps. For example, choose a clever saying or phrase with one word on each riser, spell out a word one letter at a time, or paint a graphic or pretty floral design.
3. Tone Down the Palette
Do you want the rainbow look, but bright colors just don’t fit in with your color wheel? Try muting your shades and using a quieter palette. Pull tones from the surrounding walls, furniture and accessories to match the aesthetic of your home. For instance, classic homes decorated with subtle shades might do well with subdued earth tones on the stair risers to make the rainbow-like statement without overpowering or appearing garish.
4. Find Unique Pieces
For antique lovers or a more eclectic look, consider finding different styles of a certain decorative piece and mounting them on the stair risers after painting your stairs. Examples might be house numbers counting the steps as you go up, drawer pulls, door knobs, small architectural finds, or wood appliqués. Get creative! Flea markets, antique shops, thrift stores, Etsy and eBay are all good for sourcing unique items.
5. Use Shapes and Patterns
Combine multiple geometric designs by choosing a simplified color palette. By paring down your color palette, like using just black and white, you’re free to feature a different graphic stenciled design on each staircase if you wish. Although the designs are different, a cohesive look is accomplished through the limited color choice.
6. Paint Your Own Runner
Give your stairway an instant runner — one that doesn’t need tacked down — with a solid painting down the middle of the stairs. Then adorn the edges with a solid or patterned painting in either a contrasting color or one that complements the surrounding aesthetic.
Tip: When trying to achieve a specific design or effect on your stairs (like stripes), painter’s tape is a must-have for creating crisp lines.
7. Go for the Classic
Not all painted stairs need to light up your space with brilliant color or eye-catching designs. You can also use paint to create a more timeless look. For example, ink-black stairs bordered in a crisp white.
8. Lengthen with Stripes
Create racing stripes in your chosen colors to enhance a bright white staircase. Not only is it visually appealing, but it also elongates the staircase. Use this technique to help carry your home’s color scheme from the downstairs to the upstairs for design continuity throughout the house.
9. Get the Painted Look Without the Paint
When the design you love is too intricate for paint, consider using custom wallpaper to achieve the look. Not only will it save you hours of time trying to tackle a DIY paint project that may or may not turn out as intended, the design options will be larger. When done right, wallpaper can look just as good as paint and be just as durable.