A Frugal, Simple Staircase Remodel

Back in early February, when John was going on his 8th week in Arkansas, I got antsy. If any of you have a spouse who travels for long periods of time, you know what I mean. 

I get this feeling to tear shit apart and change things. 

I blame this on a genetic trait from my sweet Grandma Carol, who tackles a home improvement project or a furniture shopping spree every time my Grandpa Steve leaves the farm. She does this all by herself. I swear, the gal doesn't sleep! She's always moving and so busy. I am so much like her in this aspect, it's a little odd. 

So, you know, John is gone for nearly 8 weeks, and I was eyeballin' my carpeted staircase and thought to myself, "Self, you can do it. Just tear that carpet up. Do it. DO IT!"

So I did it

Conveniently, my mom and dad were coming to town (we live about an hour away from them) to get some bee keeping supplies. I was able to enlist their help pulling up carpet staples for an hour. After I tore the carpet up and we pulled all those staples out, this is what I saw: 

So. Much. Painted. Wood. 

After I regained my composure (and after John got home from Arkansas), we busted out our belt and palm sanders and got to work. I'll be honest with you, though, and tell you that it was about 2 more weeks before he came home, and then another 3 weeks before we started sanding. For those of you who know me, leaving a project unfinished (in the middle of our home, nonetheless!) is a huge exercise in self-control.

I had to visit a therapist. (Kidding. Kind of.)

Because we decided to refinish the actual step, and paint the kick board, we focused most of our efforts on the former. Starting with an 80 grit sandpaper, and working our way down to 220, we managed to get the steps feeling like butta (that's 'butter' for those of you who don't speak my love language).

Then, I gave the kick boards a rough sand and filling as many holes as possible. I bought 2 quarts of Dutch Boy's Homespun Linen, but with Clark and Kensington paint from my favorite Ace Hardware down the street. I had a coupon… :)

I taped off the steps and painted, using about a quart and a half.

I am in love with the clean look of our new, old steps:

If I were to do one thing over, I would pay more attention to filling the knicks and holes on the kick boards. Although our home is old, built in 1840, so we want to showcase a bit of wear-and-tear. I also love how the kick boards match the spindles. Especially because there was no way I was painting all those spindles. I mean, you see how big our staircase is, right?!

When I am at my makeshift standing office at our island in the kitchen, this is my view. I love, love, love it. 

Manny, though? He could care less.

What home improvement project are you most proud of? Tell me about it in the comments!

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  1. It looks so nice! Makes me wonder what's under the carpet on my stairs :)

  2. Looks great, I had my doubts when you pulled up the carpet. You could fill in the holes you see know and with the left over paint touch them up.

  3. Wow, just wow. They look beautiful! Good job.

  4. Great job! Oh and I love the "wall" on your stairs. That woodwork is fab!

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  7. Hello, Staircases photos are awesome In my house just simple (straight) staircases. I think that we would take a look at a few dramatic staircases that surely make a good statement!
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