DIY Chevron Painted Stairs

Kristy Robb
by Kristy Robb
6 Hours
Hello black and white pattern lovers out there! I know there are some of you who have tired of chevron, but it remains my favorite geometric pattern to date! In fact, I made it a permanent fixture on this little set of stairs in the kitchen that leads up to our main staircase. Painted in black and white hues makes this a pretty bold and busy pattern so if your staircase is much larger, you may want to skip every other or every two stair steps so the pattern doesn't overpower the area. Let's get started!
My home is over 100 years old and these stairs are original! And while the top of the stair treads had never been painted, the kickplates had been painted white at some point it our home's history. However, I love the contrast of the stained wood with the painted pattern.
You'll want to start by gathering some tools and supplies: Exacto Knife (sharp) Triangle Template (stiff - like foamboard) Pencil 1" Painter's Tape
I wasn't too worried about the size of my template. I simply measured the height of the kick plate and cut out a triangle that fit within that measurement. I knew I would be using 1 inch tape so I made sure my triangle stencil was roughly 1 inch in width as well. I only used this stencil for the first triangle. For the smaller triangles I just eyeballed the angle I needed and overlapped my tape.
I find that painter's tape works best when you paint over it with your base coat so you get a really nice seal between the tape and the surface. Then let it dry... I used a fan to speed up the process.
Once the base coat of white was dry, I painted the whole thing black for the color of my chevron stripes. I painted two coats.
And then the most delicate part... the peeling of the painter's tape. I'm not gonna lie, it takes A LOT patience! And maybe a glass of wine or two... But alas, you will have all the tape removed eventually! And don't fret... there will be paint that peels in the wrong places. That's OK! I simply took out a paint brush with a straight edge and filled in the missing parts. As my husband reminded me, no one is going to have their face up next to the stair kick plates, so take a few steps back to admire your work and don't worry about the little details.
See, no more mistakes!! Yippee! It adds a big impact to a little space.
A few years later and I am still in love with these stairs and the bold pattern. If you want even more details and a few more pictures of the entire process, please visit my blog!
And here's a more recent picture after we updated our chalkboard wall last summer.
If you like using paint to transform a space, then you'll love how I painted this vintage chair - it was so easy and I didn't have to reupholster it.
Kristy Robb
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
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3 of 5 questions
  • Elizabeth Wright Elizabeth Wright on Feb 01, 2016
    do you find the texture under the chalkboard paint makes it hard to write on?

  • Chr2267081 Chr2267081 on Mar 29, 2016
    Love it!!!!! What kind of paint did you use for the white, please? I'm just about tip up all the carpeting on my stairs and landing...I checked out the cost of using floorboard paint and deck paint... WOW! I wondered if there was a cheaper but long lasting kick proof paint out there? Thanks :)

  • S S on Aug 18, 2016
    Why is your bottom riser so much shorter? I realize the 1/4 round molding takes up some of the pattern. Does your kitchen floor have that many layers of flooring?

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2 of 85 comments
  • Aprile Aprile on Oct 02, 2021

    You can also buy riser type wallpaper; probably wouldn't hold up as well as the paint; love it

  • Anne Anne on Oct 03, 2021

    Hi. When you said paint base coat over tape— then paint black, I got confused. Please repeat steps.