The Never-ending Stairs!

Finally, after 3 solid years the stairs leading from the living room to the bedrooms finally got to me. They had to change.

When we bought the house the stairs had hand painted shapes on them. Since it wasn’t a priority like other jobs around the house, the staircase was left alone. Our home is a side split, meaning the stairs are a focal point in a high traffic area. They look like this…


Sooo…. as you can see not really my style. I like the concept of the raisers being white and the step being stained wood, just the added detail had to go.

Backing up the truck a few months, when we were thinking of selling our house and had it on the market, we had to redo the bottom entry way staircase. Reason being, our dog rips down them and had marked them up very badly. We needed to fix them quickly, which wasn’t easy being a very high traffic area. Since time was of the essence, my husband sanded the step part just so I could re-stain them. With the final result looking like this…


Even though we love our dog to pieces and he is like our child, he isn’t allowed upstairs in the bedrooms. Therefore, the second staircase isn’t as marked up.

First problem- The livingroom floor is a light colored wood. The type of wood on the floor and the staircases are different, meaning the color of stain won’t turn out the same. I discovered this when we did the first set of stairs. Instead of trying to color match I decided to do a complete contrast. We have many piece of furniture with the same color of dark wood, so it flows nicely.

Learning from our first experience, we decided not to sand the stairs with an electric sander. Honestly, it made a complete and utter mess! I am grateful I did not have to sand or clean up the first set of stairs, my husband did it all. So, this second set is all ME!!! 😉

The raisers have been painted a few times. Multiple layers of paint never looks great. I was hoping to strip both the stain and paint. Only thing, paint strippers smell SO bad!!! We didn’t want that in our home for weeks on end. I sourced a paint and stain stripper that was eco-friendly and did not smell. I purchased the remover at Benjamin Moore.

product-smartstripA downfall of the product is it takes significantly longer than a normal paint stripper. The consistency is like a gel and you need to let it sit on the paint or stain for hours. BUT… it does not smell, a trade off I am willing to take!


The project has taken a month with 2 more stairs to go. It is a very slow process but I am hopeful it will be worth the time and effort in the end when the finish is clean and fresh!

Stay tuned for the final result!



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