20 Stunning Stairway Decor Ideas for Every Style

Check out these ideas that will really step up your stairway decor game.

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September 04, 2019

Photo By: Design 4 Corners

Photo By: Amber Thrane

Photo By: Halstead Real Estate, a member of Luxury Portfolio International

Photo By: Nicole Franzen, Architecture By: Martha Picciotti of Picciotti Design

Photo By: Jacob Hand Photography

Photo By: Jenn Feldman Designs

Photo By: Halstead Real Estate, a member of Luxury Portfolio International

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: Parks Realty, a member of Luxury Portfolio International

Photo By: Ball & Albanese

Photo By: Tria Giovan

Photo By: Julie Soefer Photography

Photo By: Tessa Neustadt

Photo By: Ashley Gilbreath

Photo By: Ashley Gilbreath

Photo By: Donna Dotan Photography

Photo By: Werner Staub

Photo By: Max Burkhalter

Inviting Entry Bench

Become the hostess with the mostest by adding a cozy, custom bench to the wall of your stairs. This bright-white staircase features an inviting, built-in bench, three coat hooks and handsome live-edge shelf. A pair of industrial sconces shine above the shelf and provide a glowing welcome for homeowners and houseguests, alike.

Tiles + Texture

A little color goes a long way. Faded aqua and French blue tiles bring an unexpected, bohemian-coastal touch to the risers of this classic white staircase. The alternating tiles bring color and character underfoot while a dreamy driftwood bench topped with five, blue-and-white linen pillows brings natural texture to the staircase wall.

Modern Mix

Let the architecture of your home guide your approach to styling your staircase. This minimalist-style Upper West End home calls for unembellished accents and modern art. A large skylight washes the staircase with sunlight and showcases an edgy and oversized black-and-white painting, the sunny seascape print and collection of sleek, circle mirrors.

From: Halstead Real Estate and Luxury Portfolio International®

Curated Collection

Dust off your inherited art and long-forgotten travel treasures and put them to work above your staircase. This modern-meets-bohemian home shows how it’s done. A striking black-and-beige global tapestry is surrounded by a unique collection of family heirlooms above the staircase base. The curated display adds texture and dimension to the ultra-white walls and offers insight to the homeowners’ personality and style.

Personality-Packed Gallery

Doesn’t this dreamy, deep-emerald staircase make you want to hop in the car, head to your local home improvement store and load up on daring paint samples, ASAP? Us too. Follow interior designer Lauren Svenstrup’s lead and add a head-turning hue to your staircase wall. Use sleek black frames and pigmented abstract prints to create a dimensional gallery display along your stairwell.

Big + Bold Artwork

Not sure how to style your modern stairs? Less is more in this urban home. Its minimalist-style, steel-framed staircase is accessorized with a single, striking abstract painting with fiery pigments and graphic strokes. The oversized art balances the airy, open staircase and brings interest to the walls without distracting from the design’s sleek, streamlined aesthetic.

Glamorous Grid

A floor-to-ceiling grid gallery wall pairs with a vibrant runner to infuse whimsy and femininity into this transitional staircase. The crisp, white frames are uniformly hung on the wall and showcase airy watercolor prints that pick up the lively hues of the staircase runner, below. Use a grid-style gallery wall to fill the soaring walls of your stairwell. To achieve a similar, cohesive design be sure to use the same style, size and finish frames throughout your gallery display.

From: Halstead Real Estate and Luxury Portfolio International®

Juxtapose Styles

Don’t be afraid to mix different design styles to elevate your staircase design. This fresh foyer features a traditional, sloped staircase with board-and-batten molding ascending the stairway wall. A periwinkle and peach abstract painting packs panache onto the classic molding and a glam settee pairs with a gilded floor lamp and geometric, turquoise room divider to bring contemporary flair to the base of the stairs.

Elevated Architecture

Not big on clutter? Skip the tchotchkes and let the bones of your home do all the talking. This contemporary staircase features a mix of gray-washed wood and chic, geometric-style steel balusters. Oversized board-and-batten molding dresses the stairwell wall and adds architectural interest to the home. Achieve a similar look by installing molding to your stair walls or update your Colonial staircase with contemporary newels and balusters.

From: Parks Realty and Luxury Portfolio International®

Local Charm

Consider the location and style of your home when sourcing accessories for your staircase. This beach house's tall, slender stairway is decorated with a surfboard and some sea-weathered oars. The navy blue trim of the runner rug brings the space together and gives the stairwell a crisp, tailored finish.

Timeless Pairing

Our suggestion for a foolproof staircase makeover? Achieve a timeless and classic design by layering black-and-white elements in the space. Interior designer Ken Gemes dresses this handsome staircase in an inky and elegant runner rug. The handrails are stained to match the carpet and a luxe, charcoal velvet settee provides a plush spot to sit at the base of the stairs.

Classic Catch-All

Add a beautiful catch-all station at the base of your stairway with a small chest or dresser. The transitional foyer features a custom birch and bamboo dresser with a marble top that provides hidden storage space for the on-the-go homeowners. A sleek black lamp sits on the dresser and illuminates the stairwell, emphasizing the handsome stair railing and banister overhead.

Opt for the Unexpected

Show off your design chops and put a personal twist on traditional gallery walls by using unexpected objects or materials. Designer Susana Simonpietri replaces typical framed photos with dozens of vintage shoes to create an instant conversation piece in this tailored stairway.

High-Style Shelving

Well-styled shelves can elevate any space in your home — yes, even the awkward empty wall leading up your stairwell. Interior designer Marie Flanigan adds charm to these entryway stairs by installing breezy-white built-in shelves to the staircase wall. Vintage books pair with sun-bleached coral figures and framed nautical prints to give the shelves a coastal touch.

Natural Beauty

House plants. They are the key to achieving a drool-worthy staircase design without putting a single hole in your wall. A large indoor plant allows you to skip the pricey gallery frames and tricky installation, while still making a stylish impact on the space. The designers at Blackband Design add a lush fiddle leaf fig to the base of the stairs to add texture to the walls and enhance the height of this bohemian foyer.

Playful Neutrals

Give your traditional staircase a youthful twist by incorporating playful patterns in neutral tones. This staircase by Ashley Gilbreath walks on the wild side with a head-turning, tiger print runner. The exotic runner is crafted with muted brown and beige hues and makes a subtle, spunky statement in the otherwise understated entryway.

Theatrical Details

Amp up the drama and enhance your second-story foyer with an opulent staircase curtain, suspended from the ceiling. Designer Ashley Gilbreath uses sheer drapes to anchor the table and chair tableau at the base of the stairs and accentuate the height of the space.

Color Along the Lines

If you have an open foyer, resist the urge to install art that ascends vertically along the stairs. Instead, hang art horizontal to the second story landing railing. This immediately brings attention to the height of your foyer and brings interest, color and brilliant views to the second story.

Wow With Wallpaper

Save your art collection for your living or dining room and update your traditional staircase, instead, by applying a bold, patterned wallpaper. This foyer uses a swirling, silver and blue wallpaper to enliven the walls and enhance the traditional white chair rail that frames the stairs. Commitment-phobe? Be sure to use temporary wallpaper to try out a punchy hue and/or flashy pattern.

Clever Vignette

Create an elegant and enviable vignette at the base of your staircase no matter how teeny-tiny your space is. Use a small side table or upcycle a night stand to serve as your foyer table. Add stacks of glossy coffee table books to the table and polish off the display with a thrifted vase, overflowing with fresh-cut foliage from your garden.

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