Stepping up in style

Last Updated 30 May 2013, 14:20 IST

The staircase in your home could either be the biggest strength or weakness, depending on how you do up the space. A collection of pictures of family and friends, vases of flowers, artwork in frames that complement each other in colour and shape are ideal options to be showcased on staircase walls, suggests Vinaya Govind.

Usually staircase walls become one of the most neglected and bare areas when it comes to home decor. However, if done up well, staircases can lend a charming look to your home. 

Here are a few points you need to take into consideration before you decide to spruce up your staircase walls:

Trace and cut out the shapes of your framed artwork on a tracing paper. Arrange these papers on the wall and check if the arrangement is aligned and blends well with the decor. Tape the papers and then drill holes in the wall to hang up the pictures.

A collection of pictures of family and friends, vases of flowers, artworks in frames that complement each other in colour and shape are best to be showcased on staircase walls. You could also turn this space into a gallery by displaying your favourite pictures or your personal images. You could experiment with frames that differ in colour and shape, but make sure the pictures work well together on the wall and don’t give a cluttered look.

Family portraits can find a place on the staircase walls. Artworks by your favourite artist can be eye-catching. Figurines and tiny sculptures could also adorn shadow boxes or mantle-pieces.

Alignment is of prime importance when you put up pictures. Ideally, pictures should be kept at least four feet off each stair for an orderly look. The measurement should be taken from the step to the bottom of the frame. Each stair could be used as a measuring point if you have plenty of pictures to put up. A horizontal pattern that ascends with the stairs is aesthetically pleasing rather than the vertical arrangement. 

For a symmetrical look, hang pictures of the same size. However, if you want to display larger pictures, hang them high up on the wall. Surround a larger frame with smaller frames in a circular pattern as a variation. Stairways are frequently used and vibrations thus caused can result in the frames falling down, if not secured well. Though a single picture hanging hook is sufficient to hold the frame in place, the use of wires behind the frames or extra hooks to support the frames is suggested. 

Trendy chandeliers on the landings of staircase and overhead spot lights can lend staircases the elegant look apart from ensuring safety.

A large vase, an indoor plant or a tall floor lamp in the corner can be perfect at the landing of the stairway. Do not add too many things in the stairway space for it can look messy.

If the stairway is constructed in an awkward angle or has limited wall space, photographs can be spread out. A built-in book shelf underneath the staircase area is definitely a clever use of space.

(Published 30 May 2013, 14:20 IST)

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