Day 4: Stairway to Dreams

home reno
Tackling the stairs was a very urgent task that needed to be completed when we moved in.


The carpet on them smelled rancid.  Jamie’s friend came over one night before move in and ripped up all of the nasty carpet and nails.  We had just naked wood for a month or two and finally Jamie got to work on them.  We knew it would be hard with the fumes for the baby and we would not be able to walk up and down the stairs for a few days.  He put plastic up to keep all of the fumes and sawdust from sanding contained.


The first task was to sand all of the wood down and fill in all of the holes.  Their were a lot of them.  Jamie kept asking if it was alright that some holes just would not be perfect.  After a few months of stairs trying to give me splinters, I was fine with imperfections.  I like distressed looks anyway.  Jamie borrowed my dads electrical sander which saved a lot of time but it still took a few afternoons to get those bad boys into decent shape.

The second step after prepping the stairs was to paint the treads.  He painted every other one so that we could still walk up and down them during the process.  We went to Lowes and at first wanted to just stain them a charcoal grey but apparently no one sells grey wood stain.  Go figure.  So I said we could just paint them.  Jamie was hesitant about painting and not staining from the get go because he didn’t want to have to do a polyurethane layer.  The fumes would have been terrible with a newborn in the house.  My guys at Lowes (I know most of them by names now… sad I know) suggested an indoor/outdoor paint that works on wood and concrete.  Valspar sells exterior paint and primer in one in many colors that would not need a polyurethane layer on top to protect them from wear and tear.  Since it is supposed to be outside it can withstand a lot of traffic.  They had my perfect grey in the swatch book.


Jamie then had to wait two or three days before he could take the tape off the risers to paint them.  I chose to do a contrasting white like the molding to make the grey pop.


We could have put a polyurethane layer on top to make them more glossy but I love how they look!  They aren’t perfect and that’s what I like about them.  Reminds me of their original state and all of the work we have done.

What do you think?
If you would like to see more of our renovations, check out:



3 thoughts on “Day 4: Stairway to Dreams

    • It’s called Silver Sand by Olympic. It is the best neutral color I have ever found! Depending on the time of day it will turn purple, blue, grey, silver, taupe… You name it! It gives our living room and stairs a different personality.

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