23 stunning staircase design upgrades

Give your entrance a step up with these genius decorating ideas.

Most staircases are overlooked when it comes to decorating, yet it is one of the first areas you see when you enter a house or maisonette flat. Whether you’re thinking about replacing or installing a brand new staircase, or just want to jazz up your space with some simple DIY ideas, make the most of the space you have. You could incorporate some extra storage under the stairs by fitting shelves, cupboards, drawers or even a whole pantry or wardrobe, create a new living space such as a compact home office or reading corner, or display a wine collection or home bar area. Or, for a more contemporary and minimal interior, floating or glass stairs can create a fresh, clean look. Whatever your style, upgrade your steps with these gorgeous staircase ideas.

1. Make a dreamy home office space

You don’t have to sacrifice a bedroom to create your own home office. Use the space under the stairs, add shelves and a desk to make the most of the space and create an area that’s just for you.

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2. Create a cosy reading corner

The area of space underneath stairs is an ideal spot to create a cosy reading corner. Add comfy cushions and blankets to make the space even more inviting.

Image via dailydreamdecor.com

Image via cushionsource.com

You could also use the landing to create a cosy nook.

Image via Achica.com

3. Give your pet a home

Create a cosy corner for your pet. Most animals love to climb into den-like spaces as it makes them feel safe, and gives them a sense of privacy and personal space.

Image via onekindesign.com

Image via onekindesign.com

Image via achica.com

4. Floating stairs

Floating stairs allow stairs to seemingly float unaided thanks to a clever feat of engineering that ensures most of the treads’ weight is supported by one wall. These are perfect if you love crisp architectural lines, minimal design and maximum impact.

Image via dezeen.com

Image via dezeen.com

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5. Decorate with wallpaper

Use wallpaper or even wrapping paper or old maps to add interest to each tread. You could mix and match different patterns, or continue the same design with a flowing image.

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6. Painted steps

Painting underneath each step is a playful way to decorate and can really open up dimly lit spaces.

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Image via Design Sponge

7. Paint a stair runner

Lay down a stair runner to add pattern and interest to your steps – or just paint one, for a fun touch.

Image via paintedtherapy.blogspot.com

8. Add a quote

Give your steps a quote using a set of simple stencils, a tester pot of paint, and a steady hand – you can find many options on Etsy.

Image via ohohblog.com

Image via Etsy

9. Store your shoes

Who needs a cupboard under the stairs when you can have neat, sliding drawers for all your footwear storage needs? Shoe. Heaven.

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10. Create a bookcase

Build built-in shelves to display books and ornaments. See how to style your shelves, and the best ornaments for shelf styling.

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Image via dailydreamdecor.com

Image via dailydreamdecor.com

No space? Add diagonal book shelves to run along the shelves like this:

Image via bookbub.com

11. Wall of glass

A glass screen is perfect for modern homes, and will create the effect of a floating staircase but is safer for homes with children and pets.

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12. Built-in wine cellar

Unfortunately, not every home comes with its own wine cellar (if only, sigh). But you can build your own wine “cellar” under the stairs! Perfect for showcasing your wine collection. Don’t have one? Time to start one.

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Image via dailydreamdecor.com

13. Home bar

No space at home for a bar cart? Create a fun home bar area under the stairs. Display fun glassware and cocktail shakers, and store bottles and mixers in cupboards. Then show off your cocktail making skills with my super easy Margarita recipe, these big-batch party cocktail recipes perfect for party entertaining, and these lovely warm mulled sloe cocktails during colder months.

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14. Pantry

Instead of cluttering your kitchen with all those tins, cans, oils and spices you rarely use, create a handy pantry under the stairs.

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Image via Apartment Therapy

15. Drawer storage

Drawers hide away clutter and are perfect for storing things like dog leads, hats and gloves, and lost bits and pieces.

Image via onekindesign.com

16. Cloak room 

Hide away jackets, coats, wellies, trainers, dog leads, hats, gloves and other clutter by building a wardrobe under the stairs, freeing up the hallway and making your home feel instantly tidier and more organised.

Image via dailydreamdecor.com

17. Stairs of glass

Maximise natural light and create an airy, spacious feel with a show-stopping glass staircase.

Image via adelto.co.uk

18. Gallery wall

Line your stairs with framed prints, posters or photographs for a homely touch. Read how to create a gallery wall and where to find the best affordable art, and real abstract paintings for under £100, or statement artworks to suit every taste.

19. Spiral stairs

A spiral staircase is always arresting and a great solution in tight spaces, and a great design for outside staircases in particular. Spiral staircases are not only great space-savers, they can make an interesting design statement too.

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20. Decorate with tiles

Stick decorative tiles on the side of your steps for instant impact, and a slightly more bohemian vibe.

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21. Map of the world 

Create instant interest by piecing together a map of the world on the side of your steps – or use maps of places that you have visited together!

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22. Room for a loo 

If you’re lucky enough to have space, add instant value to your home with an extra loo. A downstairs loo is always handy!

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Image via thrifdecor.com

23. Clever built-in storage

Finally, even if you don’t have much space under the stairs at all, or have a floating staircase, you can still get creative with storage:

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