Don’t worry, that is not my new project. That is one of my daughters stripping wallpaper late one night from another hallway in our old house. Just thought you might be amused after yesterday’s post to see yet another hallway of lovely wallpaper we had to remove.
In spite of all that effort we went through on our old house, the thing I love about working on my home is with every little change, I’m making it feel more like US — like our family. Even though we chose a brand new house this time instead of an older home, there are still so many little details I want to add or take away — not just for the sake of change or having something to work on, but to create a home that is uniquely “us.”
My first official non-furniture project in this house is going to be our stair railing.
My girls are very anxious for me to start this new project.
They are not a fan of our stairway’s handrail.
Neither am I, it just throws a strange curve in our style.
I had some stair inspiration photos from a little getaway to The Cannon Beach Hotel a couple of years ago. I decided that I wanted to paint the top of the railing (the handrail) at my new house black like in the photos, as a first step to eventually removing the carpet and painting the whole stairway.
The Inspiration Pictures.
Black accents on a white staircase.
The inspiration photos – from The Cannon Beach Hotel
What I have to work with:
1. The tools.
My handy dandy sander.
I am using it to make sure the finish
on the handrail will accept the paint.
So far I only have primer.
My husband just mentioned that I
could have had it tinted black to make the final coat easier to cover.
I was just using what I already had.
Guess I need gloves?
I am a messy painter.
And since I am a messy painter, I bet that my husband will be the one to actually paint the black. I am not to be trusted with paint (thank goodness, since I don’t love to paint any way).
The Before Photos.
Here you can see a closer view of the handrail.
Shiny orangey wood.
It just isn’t working for our style.
Ignore the carpet, that is not working for me either
but it will be dealt with in another phase.
Winston, however, loves the carpet.
Why Winston is voting to keep the carpet.
How could you let down a face like that? His vote is to keep the carpet because he fell down the red steps at our old house so many times I am surprised he never broke his neck. 15 year old dogs aren’t so sturdy with slippery steps. He likes being able to grip his feet on the carpet as he goes down. For that reason, I don’t have the heart to rip the carpet out just yet. But it is only a matter of time and the carpet will have to go.
Why our son wants to keep the carpet.
Our son also likes the carpet better than the red steps because a few of years ago he was running UP the red steps and tripped. His mouth went straight into a hardwood step. I have never seen so much blood coming out of a kids’ mouth. Or any mouth, actually. I was horrified! He loosened a couple of baby teeth and cut his gums pretty badly. It scared me to death and I was so worried about his permanent teeth, but he recovered with all of his permanent teeth in tact.
He is still a little skittish about wood steps though! I took a few falls myself on those red steps and they really do hurt when you fall on them. Even though carpet helps break the fall, this carpet won’t be staying forever.
You can see more of the stairs in my “progress” photo below (including a mirror that is also going to get a more coastal inspired makeover!)
I’ve already primed a lot of the handrail.
You can see, sadly, that my walls are still swine colored. They still aren’t working for me.
That is such a big project I am ignoring it for the moment.
I might be adding some wainscoting or molding to the walls so I am still deciding how it is all going to come together and what colors to paint.
Clearly, this will not be one of those “overnight” makeovers. It will be completed in phases.
And, yes, that is a black trash bag over my lamp. Just trying to cut down on the dust while sanding the railing.
Once I got the top of the handrail covered in primer, I started thinking that maybe I was fine with it being all WHITE. White would be easier to paint than black and it looked simple and clean that way.
But my husband vetoed that idea.
He is not an “all white house” kind of guy. So, we will be grounding the railing with black. I do love a black and white staircase and it will give the entry some more pizazz and more “old house” character.
As you can see, everyone in my house has an opinion on what our home should be like.
And isn’t that how it should be? After all, it isn’t just MY house to decorate. It isn’t all about ME.
It is OUR home to live in. We’ve got boys, and girls, and a dog who all live here. And Cheds, the hamster, who always makes a beeline to the stairway whenever he escapes. Last time he escaped I almost stepped on him in the dark on those stairs. I thought he was a sock. I’m sure if we asked him, he’d say he prefers carpet too.
(a reader sent me before & after photos of her black stairway makeover, want to see? click here)