Friday, May 16, 2008


The way the front of the house is set up, the first thing you see stepping in the door is the stairs. That's all well and good, but it's rather dull, even with a set of bookshelves at the top.

Those bookshelves are now filled with books, of course - we've been moving books since we got the keys, since they're the largest single category of stuff we own. I've been looking for a few ideas on what we can do with the stairs. The first idea was from my wife, rather than me, and that was to put bookshelves up along the right-hand side. Busyboo has a very good example of staircase-with-bookshelves, (with a great idea about drawers in steps, too) but that's not going to work for us, at least not on both sides. And the staircase is already narrow, so shelves might reduce it too much. On the other hand, it'd look great, and it's not really a public-use staircase, being as the only room up there is the master bedroom. So as long as they were only one paperback deep, we might be ok.

There's plenty of advice out there as to what to do with the space under the stairs, but very little on what you can do with the stairs themselves. One of the long-term proposals is to put a porch on the front of the house, and remove the wall between the hall and sitting-room, and that would allow us to do a bit more with the steps themselves.

The stairs are carpetted at the minute. Ordinarily, I'm much more in favour of wooden steps, but in this case, they're quite steep, so the carpet allows a bit more grip for the feet. Finally, the dark wooden bannisters may need replacing with something a bit lighter in colour, or possibly even painting. I'm starting to be greatly in favour of painted wood; it reminds me of a lot of old country houses I saw as a kid.

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