The staircase is symbolic of so many different things depending on which end of it you are staring at. It could either signify ascent or descent or even just a turn towards a new direction! But moving away from the world of philosophy and clairvoyance and delving into the realm of design and architecture, a stairway is often perceived as a mere ergonomic addition. Not many think of its aesthetic value and fewer tend to appreciate its presence. In fact, in the more and more lethargic world, it is seen as a painful little hindrance – Let’s face it; not many are excited about the prospect of dealing with a staircase!

Choosing the right staircase for the contemporary home

But choosing the right staircase can make a big difference to the overall ambiance of your home and your lifestyle. The first question comes with whether you want one at all or wish to have a single level residence that spares your knees the strain. For both spatial and practical reasons, most of us do need a multi-level home and so the inevitable staircase makes its presence felt. Today, we are here to guide you through the process of deciding what stairway you should have along with offering ample inspiration. Time to take things up several notches –

1. Decide on your Budget

You start with the most basic aspect of it all – deciding the budget for the staircase and the resources you would like to allocate for it. Spending more does not necessarily mean that you will have a more beautiful or eye-catching stairway. But it surely gives you greater options and an ability to decorate the staircase and the stairway wall in a more exuberant and striking fashion. While your budget can be a bit more flexible while planning for a new home, in case a staircase remodel or alteration, you need a more stringent estimate.

Eclectic staircase full of colorful wonder and brilliance [From: Rikki Snyder]
Space-saving spiral staircase with unique accent wall in the backdrop

2. Working with Space

Once you have the budget earmarked, it is time to think about the space you can afford for your new staircase and where it needs to go. Often, homeowners realize that the staircase they want is just too large and would not fit in one section of the house and move it entirely to a different spot! A staircase that is far too grand in a modest and diminutive home or one that is too bland in an extravagant residence can feel ungainly and are counterproductive. Size and proportions are a key aspect in the ideal staircase choice.

Gorgeous staircase for the grand entryway
Staircase blends into style and color scheme of the home while providing additional storage space [From: architecture wk]

3. Functionality trumps Form

It is easy to get caught up in the many wonderful choices that stairways offer – from the stylish and delicate floating stairways with glass steps to those more stoic and classic and made from metal. But at the heart of it all is functionality and how the staircase will be use over time. Make sure that the choice of stairway is one that will meet the needs of all your family members and safety is more important than picture-perfect or audacious design.

Brick wall in the backdrop along with stylish spiral stairway give the interior an industrial vibe
Natural ventilation for the woodsy stairway [From: Architecture Factory]
Wooden stairway illuminated using Edison bulb lights

4. Style of Your Home

Maybe your rustic home needs the romantic appeal of a stainless steel or iron spiral staircase with flowery railings and vintage charm or what you need is a floating, minimal staircase with wooden treads and a glass railing! It is all about the existing style of your residence and how the staircase can enhance it with its presence. The backdrop of the stairway also plays an essential role, but we will get to it later. Once home know the model of the stairway and its place in the residence, make sure you get the style spot on.

Industrial staircase offers multiple storage options [From: Specht Architects]
Dark wall behind the stairway lets it shine through [From: CG&S Design-Build / Paul Finkel]

5. Materials and Backdrop

The material you choose for the staircase does more than just affect its aesthetic. It also alters the weight of the stairway and its construction costs. Not every structure can bear the weight of a concrete stairway or one with heavy wooden treads. Check with the local construction codes and understand the structural integrity of your home before getting started. Lighting the stairway and adding additional features like a tranquil little water body under the stairway enhance the ambiance.

Amazing floating staircase with glass treads
Glass staircase inside the New York apartment
Smart stairway for the multi-level Aussie home

6. Comfort and Code!

Understand that a stairway is a permanent commitment and if you have elders and kids in your home, then you need to be extra careful with its design. Non-slippery treads and a safe railing are must in this case. Even if you want a daring little floating staircase with no railing, it is a must to check with local building and safety codes before you start with this little, fancy dream.

Contemporary staircase with stone wall and water feature
Brilliant little storage space underneath the white staircase

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