How Modern Staircases Can Make a Difference to Period Properties, Architecture and Interiors Images

How Modern Staircases Can Make a Difference to Period Properties

Beautiful materials and arresting forms give these designs the wow factor – Architectural Article by Houzz

7 Nov 2017

Staircases Can Make a Difference to Period Properties

Beautiful materials and arresting forms give these designs the wow factor

Full article first published on Houzz

Sarah Warwick, Houzz Contributor

‘You shall go to the ball’ fantasies pretty much have to feature a sweeping staircase – with the house naturally of the proportions and style to match. But with period homes encompassing everything from this grandly sized package through handsome Victorians to tiny cottages, a staircase that makes an impression and complements the building can come in many forms. In concrete, stone, glass and wood, these elegant designs will give you plenty of inspiration if you’re considering adding a new staircase (up to an extension, down to a basement or simply for the love of good design) to your own pre-1950s pad.

Cover all angles
The staircase in this apartment has a sculptural quality that makes it a beautiful feature of the through living-dining space. The timber finish has appealing grain and colour when seen from above and below. Note how it complements the herringbone of the wood floor, with the angles repeated in the shape of the stairs themselves.

If you have a through room, opt for a glass balustrade like this one to avoid blocking the view along the space.

See how a reconfigured staircase can unlock your interior

Wind down
Concrete was used for the ribbon-shaped staircase of this 18th-century coach house in Waterford, Ireland. The smooth surface contrasts spectacularly with the rough stone of the walls and the plain finish with the patterned floor tiles. Note how warmth is added to the lofty space with the earthy tones of the tiling and wood of the stairs.

Take a look at punchy tiles to freshen up floors

Light up a room
Introducing a wonderful pattern of light and shade, this staircase creates a new access to the floor above in a period house. Designed to barely intrude on the space in the living room, it marks the divide between seating and dining areas with room for the table under the slope. Follow this room’s example and use wood with a gorgeous grain that will be brought to the fore when the light casts patterns on your floor.

Photo by Fraher Architects

Climb the tree
This staircase links four storeys at the centre of a listed home, and gives the impression of growing organically through the building. Half landings add to the notion of tree branches. It’s always worth considering lighting for a staircase, whether in the form of the long pendants shown here or for handrails, where adding an LED strip within the design may be an option. (For another idea on lighting a staircase, see the last photo.)

See 8 contemporary ways to use natural materials in your home

Save space
The neat dimensions of a spiral staircase allow a clear view through the window in this refurbished barn conversion, and emphasise the height of the hallway.

If you’ve fallen for a spiral staircase, bear in mind that while they’re winners when it comes to saving space and are enduringly stylish, they do make getting furniture upstairs more difficult.

Make an entrance
A cantilevered stone staircase is the central feature of this hallway and it’s completed with custom-made spindles and a curvaceous and tactile handrail. If a dramatic staircase is your dream, stone is a classic choice and it’s a good solution for those who prefer stairs that give the impression of solidity rather than lightness.

Talk to staircase professionals near you to discuss adding a new staircase to your property

Sweep round a curve
The staircase in this renovated farmhouse uses traditional materials repeated elsewhere in the room to pull the look together.

Remember that if you don’t have the budget for a new staircase, it’s possible to replace chunky spindles with narrow metal versions like these to create more light in a hallway or a better view through an open-plan room.

Take a bite
The rich chocolatey tones of American black walnut are enhanced by the inset lights on this staircase. Used for steps, posts and handrail, as well as flooring, the timber creates an impression of luxury.

Stairs can be lit with strip lights beneath the overhang of each tread or with a series of lights, as here.

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