Before & After: Stairs


Remember the previously hideous hallway? It extended down the stairs! We’d been living with the bad carpet on the stairs for a long time after the hallway had been done, partially because the cats use it as a scratching post. Why do I let the cats get away with everything bad? I don’t know. The carpet was disgusting, sticky, and probably 30+ years old. Having it out & finishing the central stairway makes the whole house feel lighter.

I’ve had some crazy thoughts about painting the walls gold, or wallpapering with this wallpaper, but I haven’t found the right paint & Sean isn’t into wallpaper. My brother tore out all the old frosting swirl plaster and replastered with just the right amount of non-perfection, so I’m kind of into the white farmhouse-y walls right now.

We ended up with the West Elm Bursa rug as it comes “pre-distressed.” Although I’ve started trimming the cat’s claws, they still are giant destructive forces of evil. I’m pretty sure that the amount of time I spend decorating around the cats qualifies me as totally insane.

Wall Paint – Benjamin Moore non-VOC Natura in Steam

Stair Paint – Benjamin Moore non-VOC Natura in Silver Fox

Runner – West Elm ‘Bursa’ – 3 runners





  1. Looks really lovely. I really like the runner. I’m with you on designing around cats. I keep trying to propose building cute cat trees and it keeps getting vetoed. Obviously if they had their own furniture they would be less likely to mess up ours, right?

  2. This looks so refreshing! Congratulations! I was hot on wall paper too, but did a secret paint the walls white mission while my husband was away and the white walls make me so happy it’s hard to think about next steps (That said, the white/ pewter otami is still on my wish list. Also the peony or inked peony wallpaper from anthropologie – but like your working around cats, I’m working around 4 boys… )

  3. Oh man, taking out all the carpeting from our upstairs and the staircase made such a huge difference in our house! It’s a good feeling. I haven’t been able to cover them up with anything else yet though, I just like seeing them looking clean and open – the runner is great on yours and is making me second guess myself!

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