Whatever size or style of house you are renovating, staircase decorating ideas are one of the best ways to make a design statement. Dramatic paintwork, lively wallpaper, unusual use of materials or contemporary metalwork will transform your space, whether you are working with a narrow Victorian terrace or a split-level, warehouse-style apartment. After all, the staircase is more often than not the first thing you see and a property's most significant architectural feature, an integral part of modern interior design. We've delved into the Livingetc back catalogue to unearth these stunning staircase decorating ideas to inspire your project - this is your chance to raise the bar, one tread at a time...
Feel the blues
This contemporary new-build home on the outskirts of Stockholm is all about double-height ceilings, dazzling artwork and sleek details. "Every great house needs a great staircase," owner Matt enthuses. "It was too expensive to carpet and another wood would have competed with the plywood window frames." This wide design takes the eye straight from the front door up towards the window and right out into the forest canopy. For a similar paint shade, see Little Greene's Tivoli intelligent eggshell.
The modern plywood staircase in this Victorian terrace by architect David Money sits on a backdrop of exposed reclaimed brick, which brings warmth and texture into the home. Add on the glass roof, and you've got a pretty spectacular space. The bike on the wall? A practical solution that also looks good. "I did choose the best-looking bike," says David.
In this Victorian villa owned by photographer Paul Craig, function and form combine to transform the staircase into a striking centrepiece. "Think gentleman's club," says Paul. "This is designed as a comfortable spot to read a book." The library shelves were imagined by Paul and made by Andwoodcraft, then painted in Little Greene's Lamp Black eggshell. The chair is Matthew Hilton's Balzac armchair, covered in Zoffany Quartz velvet in Berry. The light is the Estado pendant by Miguel Mila for Santa & Cole.
For a simple and achievable staircase decorating idea with impact, introduce a bright runner into a pared-back, classic space. This hit of colour will give the room an instant lift. Roger Oates, Crucial Trading and Alternative Flooring are our go-to sources for design-first solutions.
This Victorian three-storey house in north London was decorated by interior designer Peter Mikic, and combines high-end design with quirky and original touches. The dramatic shape of this contemporary light fitting echoes the decorative wrought iron staircase railings to great effect.
This 17th-century former mill in Gloucestershire throws out the design rulebook and is a masterpiece in contemporary meets classic design. Interior designer Nia Morris worked with architect Richard Parr to create the dramatic entrance. The sleek balustrade works beautifully with the exposed timber treads.
This moody space is owned by Matt Goss who runs Pure White Lines, an emporium of industrial-style vintage homewares and furniture in London. He has combined a dark wall colour with an imposing Murano glass sputnik pendant. The walls are painted in Downpipe estate emulsion by Farrow & Ball.
Inspired by David Hockney, interiors stylist Hannah Franklin painted large blocks of colour on the wall of this loft-style contemporary home. These chalky sorbet hues are Pink Perfection, Twice Shy, Spring Gentian, Ultramarine and Cheerio, all Valspar at B&Q. The Stay Swivel armchair, Gubi, is available from The Conran Shop.
This sweeping staircase is in a five-storey townhouse in Antwerp, Belgium. Bare footboards are a clever foil to the decorative balustrade, ensuring the overall scheme remains elegant and contemporary. Source a similar bespoke creation from Arc Fabrications.
Round the bend
Designer Harriet Paterson's eco house in Camberwell features a staircase by former owner, architect John Eger. The property is very narrow, making this curvaceous oak design a space-conscious solution. It replaced a lift.