Design Spotlight: Stairways

Three award-winning architects and designers share how they transform a prominent, functional element of the home into a distinct custom look.

July 23, 2014

Three award-winning architects and designers share how they transform a prominent, functional element of the home into a distinct custom look.

Jamison Howard
Max Crosby Construction
Charleston, S.C.

 
Interior staircases, whether a grand foyer architectural element or a necessary functional element, will certainly be a focus of any client. As a custom builder, offering a guiding hand and helping clients make confident decisions with all of their selections builds trust, especially if you are properly meeting your clients’ expectations in terms of aesthetics and budget.
 
 
There are so many options and products available that can allow a distinct custom look for clients without busting a budget. Wrought iron continues to be a favorite from the most elaborate custom scroll work to simple straight iron pickets. Consider meeting your clients’ expectations and budget by integrating pre-manufactured scrolls or panels to achieve the features you envisioned.
 
 

Cindy McClure, ASID, MCR, CKD, GCP
Grossmueller’s Design Consultants
Washington, D.C.

 
Stairs are defined as a set of steps leading from one floor to the next consisting of the steps, a rail, and balusters. Functional and necessary, yes; boring, no. In many homes stairs are a prominent feature, so why not make them more interesting? Whether the stairs are hung from the roof rafters to become a sculptural work of art...
 
 
...or the bottom steps are flared out and invite one to explore the next level...
 
 
...the staircase can be visually pleasing. Rail and baluster choices vary from wood to iron to steel cable or glass. Treads and risers can be made of the same materials or contrast to tie in other elements. In any case, the staircase is one location to have fun and show your style.
 

Luis Jauregui, AIA
Jauregui Architecture Interiors Construction
Austin, Texas

 
Subtle sophistication is found in the smallest detail of this staircase, such as the copper fleur de lis accenting each stair riser:
 
 
Earthy materials set off this simple stairwell. The architecture is kept simple throughout this modern urban-loft-meets-Hampton-chic-style home:
 
 
A functional stairwell is transformed into a sculptural piece of architecture featuring a prominent stained glass window along with alcoves:
 
 
A magnificient Chilhuly fixture highlights this flowing staircase:
 
 
CB

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