One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Staircase Refresh


I should really be titling this post "Refinishing the Stairs - Part 2" since I started working on my staircase SIX YEARS AGO and have left them in their unfinished state ever since. It all started when I wanted to remove the ugly, old carpet and I ended up discovering that vinyl tiles were underneath, glued to both the treads and the risers. When I tried to remove one of those tiles, it left a thick, uneven layer of glue attached to the stairs. So I left the project alone while I decided what to do next. Fast forward six years later and I have two motivating factors to get the job done: 1. a friend of mine and her handy boyfriend are staying with me while they are home for a short time between their world travels, and he offered to finish my stairs as a thank you for giving them a place to stay; and 2. it's ORC season! The ORC, or the One Room Challenge, is a biannual decorating event created by Linda of the blog Calling It Home, where over the course of six weeks, twenty talented design bloggers transform a room and share their progress each Wednesday all the way up to the reveal. The following day, Linda invites anyone else who would like to join the challenge to share their own room transformation as a Guest Participant. The spirit of the challenge is for the participants to provide support and encouragement to one another to finally get that room done, and it's helped me to complete five rooms of my house, starting with my home office in Spring 2014, followed by my living room, my front porch, my kitchen and my principal bedroom. I'm excited to participate once again and finally get my stairs finished! (And yes, I realize that stairs are not technically a 'room,' but when you see the state they were in, you will allow me this exception!)

The Fall 2017 season of the One Room Challenge is actually already in its second week and I'm getting a late start, but the work is progressing quickly. Here we have what the stairs looked like when I bought the house (this photo is from the realtor listing - the previous homeowner cut off the banister to get her furniture to fit up the stairs...I don't blame her - I had to saw off those remaining posts to get my queen bed frame up there!):


Here are a couple of photos I pulled from my 2011 blog post. On the left, how I purchased the home. On the right, the red vinyl tiles that were under the carpet (and a laser-eyed Penelope). I'm embarrassed to tell you that I've lived with the stairs in the condition at right for the last six years!!!

And now, here are some progress pics!!! This is thanks to my handy house-guest (let's call him Handy John). He removed the carpet from the bottom two steps and landing (I had left the carpet on the lower part only because it's the first thing you see when you walk in my front door, and I didn't want everything to be ugly while I decided on next steps.) He then removed the vinyl tiles and sanded the glue off. Talk about good timing - I had attended BlogPodium, (design & lifestyle blogger conference) at the same time that Handy John started this project, and as fate would have it, one of the sponsors, Black + Decker, contributed an electric sander in the swag bag! I haven't tried it out myself, but Handy John said it was amazing and made quick work of getting the glue off. Thanks BlogPodium and Black + Decker!

The painting is currently underway and all steps now have at least one coat, but I'm going to save those pics for another post. Next week I'll show you some inspiration photos, a peek at how the painting is coming along, and some helpful tips on painting your stairs without cutting yourself off from getting up or down them!

In the meantime, please go check out the Week 2 progress of the rooms that the featured designers are working on here, and follow along with my fellow guest participants here. And be sure to follow me on Instagram for the sneak peeks and behind the scenes fun that I share on my Stories!