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Tag: New Staircase

Staircase Makeover: A New DIY Venture Begins

One evening late last week, the Mister and I found ourselves without something on our to-do list, so we finally embarked on the staircase project that I posted about 2 weeks ago.  It took longer than expected to start this project, but I needed my man’s muscles and braun to assist on the beginning stages.

If you remember back, the removing of the carpet was one of my DIY project goals for 2012 and I’m excited that its finally begun.  I initially wanted to remove/replace all the carpet on the second floor (yet it’s not within the budget), but removing the carpet on the stairs is going to be a big improvement since that gets the most traffic. Even though I’ve never been happy with the carpet, it was in place more for safety than aesthetics – now it’s time to say ba-bye!

We’re lucky to have real wood on the stairs instead of plywood, but there are still alot of details to giving these stairs an entire new look, so I’m going to break the process into a few posts. Plus they’re not nearly done and I couldn’t wait to share the “happenings” with you till the end.

Take a look…

Project Details

Duration of Phase One: 1.5 hours
Phase 1 Difficulty: Medium
How Many People Needed: 1

The first phase includes steps to remove the carpet, remove the carpet tack strips, and how to transition the wood steps to the 2nd floor carpet.  But before we begin, here are the supplies that I used.

  • Hammer
  • Cats Paw
  • Needle Nose Pliers
  • Flat Head Screwdriver
  • Muscles 🙂

For this stair makeover, we started by removing the carpet. Every two steps, we used an X-acto blade and cut the carpet where the tread and riser meet. This made the process more manageable with smaller pieces of carpet instead of one large piece.

As we went along and took the carpet off of every two stairs, we removed the carpet tack strips with a hammer and cats paw.  A cats paw is a great tool that we use for alot of projects.  For the stairs it worked well to get under the tack strips, yet didn’t damage the wood on the stair tread.  I highly recommend it 🙂

Watch your toes on those tack strips – they’re sharp!

Once the carpet was removed from the entire stair case, it was time to remove the staples from the carpet pad…  and boy, there were alot of them! For this step, it’s best to use a needle nose plier and/or a flat head screw driver.

The last step for this first phase was to cleanly transition the existing carpet and the newly exposed wood stair at the second floor landing.  Using an X-acto knife, we trimmed the carpet so there would be enough to wrap around the top step.

It didn’t need to be perfectly cut, but it was important that there was enough carpet to wrap it around the top stair nosing.

The carpet pad also needed to be trimmed.  Using a scissor, we trimmed the pad to be at the same edge as the stair nosing.  Trimming it at this point instead of wrapping it around the nosing (like the carpet) made it easier to staple the carpet under the nosing.

Lastly, using a staple gun we stapled the carpet under the top nosing.  It’s important to use longer length staples so each goes securely through the carpet and into the wood.

The result is a clean transition from wood to carpet…

There is still much more to do to get these stairs to completion, but we’re on our way.  Many of you have asked what we plan on doing on the stairs (thank you for taking interest) – stain, paint, stair runner…  so many options.

After lots of thought, I plan on staining the treads a dark walnut finish, painting the risers and balusters a crisp white, and painting the banister and newel post a taupe color (same as my kitchen – BM berkshire beige). Wouldn’t that be amazing?!

1. source unknown 2. Centsational Girl 3. Benjamin Moore Berkshire Beige 4. Walnut stain

Again, here’s a peak at the changes from phase one.