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What Colour Should Your Stairs Be?

10 December 2018

The staircase is a crucial part of every home. Not only do they play a vital role in the day-to-day use of the property, but they are often one of the home’s most prominent features. Wherever they are located in the house, stairs are often a room or hall’s biggest focus, and their appearance can dictate the style of a room – and, potentially, the feel of the whole property.

It is essential that you consider all possible options before deciding on your staircase. Made to measure stairs will help create the perfect design for your space and you will explore a variety of style options, timbers and finishes that will help you turn it into a truly unique feature. One of the most significant decisions you can make for a new staircase is which colour to choose, so here we have created a list of our favourites along with some other things to consider before taking the leap.


Minimalist – Blending with the Background

More people are looking to create a minimalist style with stairs, with many modern homes built to reduce the impact that the staircase has on the wider room. While much of the minimalist style depends on how your stairs are designed, certain colours can help your staircase take on this appearance.

The easiest way to create a more minimalist look for your staircase is to choose a colour that matches the surfaces they are closest to. For example, if you have a curved staircase running alongside a white wall, painting the entire stair the same shade of white will help create the illusion of the staircase disappearing into the wall, helping it to blend into the background and appearing to take up less space. Usually the staircase is varnished or painted to correspond with the wall colour, most commonly white.

Importantly, a colour is only one aspect of stair design. To achieve a minimalist staircase the stair construction must also be stripped to a bare minimum. The floating zigzag staircases tend to be most commonly chosen for a minimalist constructions, although staircases created just by steps floating off the falls are equally minimalist. Glass balusters are usually the choice here, although stainless steel spindles are also growing in popularity.

White floating zigzag staircase with glass by WoodenStairs


Traditional – Rich and Warm Colours

On the other hand, you may wish to accentuate your stairs and use them as tools to create a comforting warmth and a traditional feel within your home. Houses that contain a traditional staircase design that creates a focal point in the room may look to emphasise its presence, and for that, a slightly darker or warmer shade often work best. By choosing certain shaded woods – such as sapele or walnut – this effect can often come naturally. However, adding varnish to a more traditional hardwood, such as beech or oak, can create an equally impressive effect at a more competitive cost. Staining of timbers such as oak, ash or beech offers a great variety of colours, shades and grains that can achieve a final effect.

If you wish to take this further, consider the lighting in your space. If it is a dark space where the light will often come artificially, then a deep shade of red or brown might help to give the room a cosy yet grand feel. Meanwhile, if the area receives an element of natural light, colours such as orange or light brown can help to create a sense of luxury and statement style.

Stained beech stairs with lights by WoodenStairs


Modern – Natural Contrast

If you have a modern home but are still looking to showcase your new stair design, then using softer colours or a combination of colours will often work best. Allowing the stair to stand out without too much support will showcase its style and design, making it simple to coordinate with a modern room interior. If the room receives a lot of natural light, often keeping the wood’s colour, particularly if it is a light shade, will work well for the stair.

Alternatively, creating statement areas on your staircase by incorporating a mix of colours or materials such as glass or stainless steel is an intuitive way of creating a unique style. Highlighting natural shades with dark components - such as black handrail on a light colour staircase – can inject a sense of modernity that will flow through the room, while also allowing the stair itself to stand out.

Modern Oak stairs with glass by WoodenStairs

The colour you choose for your staircase will have to depend on where in the property the staircase is situated and on the room décor. The stair design and colour can either blend in with the stairwell or “pop” within its space. Although the stairwell remains the same, the effect changes.

Hopefully this guide will point you in the right direction and help you create a beautiful look with your stairs. If you are looking to upgrade your current staircase, why not contact us today and see what our design team could do with your space?

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