New House Plans: The Stairs


We move into our new house in September and plan on lots of immediate changes,  One of the first things we're changing is the stair railing.  (above)  We plan to remove the current drywall and the horizontal wooden railing and do an iron railing instead.

When you first walk in our new house, you walk into the tiled section you see on the right side of the above pic.  Then if you turn left, you walk in to the living room.  You can see the stairs right when you walk in & of course they're a main feature in the living room. 

Stairs can be a really beautiful element in a home but these babies are just drywall...  I've always had dreams about stairways...  There's this gorgeous one in a dream hotel I go to sometimes that I really love.  It winds and connects in crazy ways.  Kind of like this one in Scotland's Garden of Speculation...

Read post on it here


And because our stairs will be so prominent, I want them to be special.  I'm going with iron railings and when I started looking into them, one of the first places I went was to Holly @ Things That Inspired post written a while back on iron stair rails here.  (If you haven't read it, definitely check it out.. Her attention to detail is amazing and it really helped me pay attention to the details that are important to me.)  I began collecting images of stairways that I loved.

{A gorgeous railing seen on Holly's post}


We're having hardwood floors installed on the first floor and the stairs will be wood too.  (The wood is another post ;)   I am drawn to stairs with very spare railings and am even in love with this....


...But with kids & codes = not so much.

I thought about keeping the stairs enclosed like they are here:

...But I think these work because of the plaster and the gorgeous curve.  Our stairs are straight and the curves wouldn't work with the architecture of our home.  (waa waa waa ;)  But how awesome is that hand rail on the wall?



For railings, I'm drawn to spare iron ones. 


Our house is modern but it has sort of a rustic vibe with beams & cedar. 

One of the first things I thought about was whether I wanted the sides of the stairs to be exposed like this:



or whether I liked the idea of the metal meeting the wall, like this:



or this:


or this:



I've decided that since the stairs will be open with railings (vs. enclosed as they are) that I want to accentuate the steps...


or this:


...or this:



... so we'll be leaving them exposed.

The next thing to think about was whether I wanted the rails to meet the stairs themselves or if they should meet at a bottom rail like this:



My favorite railings seem to be European ones that wouldn't be safe for my kids or pass code...  Stairways with only one rail per tread:


I was dying to expose the area under the stairs like in the above photo, but we are planning on a 4th bedroom for baby Luke under there, sort of like Harry Potter's bedroom:


He'll fit perfectly:

"Thanks, Ma."

What a lucky little guy!

A door will be added on the side:

{Totally kidding. the door on the wall to the right of the stairs is the laundry room & then under the stairs becomes utility so we still can't use the space but Luke will have a bedroom upstairs ;)

..Anyway, one of the most defining elements for me is the number of rails per tread... Like I mentioned, I'm drawn to one per tread (which isn't doable)


..But I can do two:

{yay!!}

For how the rails attached to the steps, I was thinking I wanted something very clean and seamless with none or barely there hardware attaching it to the step (like below) vs. the larger connections (above)...


We met with our iron railing fabricator (Tom of Owens Companies/ Herndon Iron Works) and he said that the completely seamless look would be pretty challenging (ie expensive) and wondered if we couldn't fasten the railings to the wall below, which would also give us a more comfortable width up our narrow staircase.

This technique was also used in one of my favorite European inspiration photos:


It's very different from most of the railings seen in our area & I love it!!! I love how the line of the rail cuts through the line of the stair tread and makes an interesting point of intersection.

We decided on something a little less decorative for the attachment hardware because something as decorative as the hardware above wouldn't work in our house.  Here's  a drawing done by Tom (of Herndon Iron Works) for how it will look:


Believe it or not, there are still some little details to think of (getting the finish right/ the post detail, etc.) but we've got the general design set and I'm thrilled!!

To see more of my stair inspiration and to view sources for these photos (from many of my favorite people's pinterest pages!!) click my "New House Stairs" pinterest page here.

Have a great weekend!!!

If you'd like help creating a home you absolutely love, contact me about our design services.

2 comments:

Ryan Summers said...

Planning a house is very important thing in building new homes. Thanks for providing new house plans which are very useful for me. Home Plans

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