I'm not sure why I have waited so long to share the stairway makeover. I guess it is partly because it was not as dramatic as a room makeover. It is also an awkward area to try and photograph since it is so narrow and steep. But I finally decided to just try. I was waiting for the paint to dry in the bathroom (a refresh makeover coming soon!) and it was well over 100 degrees outside, so I grabbed the tripod and started taking pictures.
Remember about a year ago when I took the forest green carpet off the stairs and found this green marble looking vinyl from the 1930's? It was fun and funky but very uncomfortable to walk on! It stayed that while I re-textured the walls and then tried to pick out a carpet color I liked that would go with our new flooring upstairs.
The previous owners had added a texture to the stair walls that was different than anywhere else in the house. The walls were a weird sharp texture with spikes that stuck out. I sanded down the worst of it and added drywall mud to the wall in a way that made the wall smooth to match the original texture in the rest of the house.
There's a new wall texture, paint, hand rail, carpet, and rug at the bottom! I also have never had anything hanging on the walls. The new frames filled with family photos are my favorite!
We also added a new light to the top of the stairs. It used to hang in my living room as part of a matched pair. When I broke one of them, and found that they had been discontinued, I was devastated. But them I had the idea to hang the good one here!
Shane is actually (not so secretly) happy how things turned out because he always hit his head on these light when they were in the family room.
There is a big window at the bottom of the stairs which made photographing the actual photos in the frames difficult, but in real life there is not a glare. I love looking at the photos when I go up and down the stairs. Especially as my kids are getting older, the photos of them tiny make me smile.
Both hallways got a bit of a makeover too. At the bottom of the stairs, I added a plant and some artwork by an artist I recently discovered. I have two of her pieces. One is a print and this one, is an original.
I love art. I appreciate the talent and work that goes into every type of art and media. But I have never had such a physical reaction to seeing a piece of art. I knew I needed this piece in my home. The artist is named Kate Lee.
I added both of her pieces (this one titled Never Forgotten ) and the other print called Atonement in my hallways because they are each the middle of our homes and I thought it was appropriate since Christ is the center of our lives, for the paintings of him to be at the center of our home.
We went with a carpet that had specks of light, medium, and dark. It looks like it is all one color in the photos, but it is more speckled in real life. It also perfectly matched the color of both the flooring down and upstairs even though they are different types. Even though we don't have carpet anywhere else in our home, we chose carpet for the stairs for two reasons.
Our stairs are steep! I felt that for safely reasons, it would be better if they were soft. Carpet would be less slippery and if you fell, it would be better to land of cushy carpet than hard laminate.
Second of all, we have two different flooring types (vinyl and laminate) so the carpet is like a buffer between the two.
Here is the other Kate Lee piece. I was drawn to the simplicity of it. You can find all her work HERE. I bought the print and then added it to a frame from Hobby Lobby.
One of the things I have struggled with is our old dog gate. Dog gates are ugly. We have had the cheap adjustable "baby" gates for years and I hate them with every fiber of my being. I have always wanted one that I could mount on the wall and just pull out when needed. I couldn't find one that matched the image in my head so I finally just modified one.
I found an accordion style one on Amazon. It was the same unfinished wood as other baby gates and it had a huge plastic piece across the top that really didn't allow it to collapse very much. I pried off the plastic top part and painted the gate. The I screwed it into the wall where it was hidden when not in use!
When someone knocks on the front door, Kevin (our Frenchie) goes nuts. He barks until he realizes it is someone he knows and will keep barking if it is a stranger. It is nice to quickly pull the gate out so we can answer the front door without him yapping at our feet trying to sniff the person.
So there you have it! While not a jaw dropping change or dramatic reveal, I am so happy to finally have the spaces that get the most traffic, complete and functioning well.
Here are the items from the space:
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