How do I fix this eyesore?

One ugly stair case
q how do i fix this eyesore
  6 answers
  • Leah Leah on May 21, 2017
    Paint would be my first choice. Paint and then stencil. Paint the stairs brown , and the kickboard (board between the risers) whatever lighter house color that you use throughout your house. I would then stencil numbers from No. 1 upward in an old script font in a DARKER color on the kick board for a rustic look. I would then draw a line perpendicular to the stairs midway up and nail a flat and sanded piece of 2x4 there, somewhat delineating a “top” and “bottom” I would paint the bottom a darker color, probably whatever I used for the stencil color and the “top” I would paint in a lighter warmer color. I’d also probably strip and stain/gloss polish that handrail as well. Paint is an amazing thing. Good Luck!
    • Kathleen Bruno Kathleen Bruno on May 21, 2017
      Thank you Leah, I did see a video somewhere with stenciled stairs and it was pretty. I've used strippers before and never really had good luck with them and the smell was something horrible. Do you think they might make a better stripping agent than they used to several years ago?
  • Rhonda S Rhonda S on May 21, 2017
    How to fix it depends a lot on your existing decor, your taste, and your buget. Some swear by carpeting to quiet and very quickly improve the looks of stairs, but I like "easy care" options. I'm not sure what your buget is, but you can buy stair treads ready made and ready to finish with a stain and sealer of your choice at almost any home improvement store. They can be painted. Those look very torn up. If they are just stained, you could prime and paint them. If they are rough, I would cover them with a new tread set and possibly new riser (the "kick board" part parallel to walls, perpendicular to floor or tread.) I've seen hombre paint jobs that had a nice feel to them, if that is what interests you. I'm a big fan of simple, so for me, replacing the treads at a cost of $15 to 25 each plus stain and "gym coat " or an equivalent durable finish, white risers. I'd also paint the walls and think about installing a hand-rail. If your only goal is to beautify, even all dark paint would be better than what is there now. I've seen tutorials on using torn and crumpled craft paper to approximate the look of leather; I've seen a collection of bottle caps put to use as mini-tiles; I've seen mosaics and paintings on the risers. How you make it look better depends on what "better" is to you.
    • Kathleen Bruno Kathleen Bruno on May 21, 2017
      Thank you Rhonda, Do you think it might be possible to install a small stone to the staircase to give it an upgraded look? I just don't like carpet on stairs, and want a wow effect.
  • Sandy Sandy on May 21, 2017
    You can always try wall paper.
  • Rhonda S Rhonda S on May 21, 2017
    It is absolutely possible to use a stone treads. However they might be expensive. Contact a stone dealer in your area to see if broken or return countertops from other customers could be cut down at a bargain price if budget is an issue. We used 24 "x24" Granite floor tiles on our counter tops as a budget-friendly alternative to a solid granite countertop. It might be possible to use tiles like that directly on the existing treads. This will only work if the existing Treads are firm and do not give. If they sag or bounce when you walk on them, the grout and possibly the tile itself will crack. The tiles we used came in 12 by 12 inch forum and we used a ceramic wet saw to cut them to size. You might need to put a 3/4 or even 1 inch plywood base under the tile to stiffen the tread. If by stone you mean smooth flat stones popular in some spas right now, I don't see why not if you stiffen the treads first. Those use a lot of grout. And where a subfloor gives, grout cracks. For wow factor wothput acyisl stone, Have you thought of painting them using faux marble or faux granite techniques?
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    • Rhonda S Rhonda S on May 22, 2017
      The limited time to take care of it adds a wrinkle to the job. Hmm. "floor and porch" paints are very durable, but of course not indestructible. I noticed you have a handrail, already. If you do paint the treads, I would paint the handrail to match. I didn't notice it when I answered before. So eveything is painted now? Well, I've never done it, but I would think factory sealed flooring of some kind, like laminated wood planks would be faily quick and possibly less expensive than actual oak treads. I don't know how you would handle the lip of the tread, though. Search on line for Home Depot or Lowes (or the reatiler of your choice), go to the plank flooring, and ASK them if it is a suitable use. The Q & A people are knowledgeable and willing to help, in my experience. The flooring options are amazing. One note for stairs - stone or tile can be very slippery when wet, so think about texture for safety. A fresh coat of paint on the walls will also "clean up" the look. How sound is the finish now? Are the treads smooth and strong, or are they pitted, ssplintered, or sagging? Do they "bounce" or squeek when you walk on them or are they sturdy and firm? Those answers will make some of your other choices more clear.
  • Rhonda S Rhonda S on May 22, 2017
    I just did a search of Home Depot with "stone flooring" as the search term. (I dout the retailer will matter, but that is where I started.) There are some wonderful options out there in laminates as well as in real stone. Good luck with this! It will depend on your style, your pocketbook, and your time, now!

  • Kathleen Bruno Kathleen Bruno on May 22, 2017
    Thank you Rhonda.
    • Rhonda S Rhonda S on May 22, 2017
      One additional thought....stone on the riser and wood on the tread might give you the Wow you are looking for, and the risers don't take the beating the treads do, so cracked grout and slippery when wet wouldn't be nearly the concern....Mosaic stone tiles are available at most home improvement stores, and would give you something more than plain Jane. Have fun with it!