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16 Stunning Staircase Ideas to Inspire Your Own Staircase Design

Want to transform your home by moving the staircase but don’t know where to start? Check out our examples of stare-worthy staircases that will step up your home’s layout and familiarize yourself with staircase lingo and design principles.

Staircase with blue accent wall
Linda White

Staircases might be one of the most functional architectural features of your home. Their purpose, after all, is to carry you from one floor to the next, but that doesn’t mean they need to be utilitarian. One way to step up your home’s style is a staircase design that makes the stairs a focal point of your interior design.

Cantilevered steps, minimalist railings, glass balustrades, timber treads. The possibilities are endless but don’t get discouraged. The RoomSketcher App is an easy-to-use home design and floor plan tool that allows you to create a staircase design and see how different styles and finishes will look in your home in 3D.

Staircase Design Ideas

Staircase With Glass

The warm, natural wood steps and black framed glass wall are a perfect blend of form and function. The glass wall offers welcome sound reduction and reflects or allows natural light to pass through, making the interior feel more spacious.

glass design stairs

Staircase Design With Lighting

This floating timber staircase is in a dimly-lit space, so the circular lights installed at each tread and at the landing ensure safety. 

staircase design with light

Small Space Stairs Design

This white floating staircase delivers a barely-there design and is almost invisible against white walls. It’s suspended to the ceiling with a white metal hanging bracket. 

stairs in small space

Staircase Design With Granite

Granite is a natural rock that’s often used for kitchen countertops because of its elegance and durability. Those same qualities make it a great option for staircases. Granite slabs are heavy and require sufficient support. 

granite stairs

Staircase Design With Wood

This stunning blonde wood straight staircase incorporates hidden storage to help keep clutter at bay. It features lit niches to display potted plants, as well as shelves to showcase treasured keepsakes. 

wooden staircase design

Staircase Design With Bathroom

Tired of lineups to use the washroom? Create a powder room underneath the staircase in a space that would otherwise remain unused. 

small bathroom underneath stairs

Desk Under Stairs

If you work at home at least part of the time or your kids need a dedicated space to do their homework, the space under the stairs offers untapped potential. 

Stairs with desk underneath

Staircase Design With Brick Wall

This straight staircase is nestled against an exposed brick wall that provides warmth, character, and texture. Thanks to a floor-to-ceiling metal rod guardrail, the brick wall is a stunning backdrop to the living room. 

industrial brick wall stairs

Design With Seating Below Staircase

The last tread of this natural wood staircase turns the corner and morphs into a convenient bench that can be used as a reading nook or a place to sit while putting on or removing shoes.

Stairs with seating below

Staircase Design Black and White

This striking black and white staircase feature decorative risers. A built-in bench has been added to the wall of the stairs and provides welcome storage. 

black and white stairs with photo wall

Staircase Design Marble

This luxurious staircase is surrounded by marble walls. Lights at the base of each riser emphasize the staircase’s beautiful treads. 

marble stairs

Staircase Design Modern

This modern staircase features a minimalist design and floating stair treads that allow the expansive windows to flood the space with natural light. 

architectural stairs

Staircase Design Metal

A metal rod guardrail attached to each stair tread and suspended to the ceiling provides safety while ensuring the staircase is a focal point of the home’s minimalist design. 

metal stairs

Wine Storage Under Staircase

These under-the-stairs wine storage units take advantage of unused space and show off favorite vintages. Kick things up a notch by creating a climate-controlled unit. 

wine storage underneath stairs

Staircase Design Railing

Vertical wood slats create a sense of separation between the staircase and the room and allow light to pass through. 

railing design wood

Spiral Staircase Design

Spiral staircases require just a small footprint, making them a great option if you don’t have a lot of space. They’re also fun and whimsical and prove that less can be more. 

turquoise spiral stairs

Standards for Staircase Design

You likely walk up and down the staircase in your home countless times a day without giving any thought to its many components but when planning a staircase design, it’s important to understand a staircase’s anatomy.

For starters, the stringers are the main framing component of a staircase and hold the treads and risers. Most people call the part of the staircase that you walk on the steps, but in staircase terms, they’re called treads or run.

The vertical part of the stairs in between each tread is called the riser and it supports and connects successive treads. Modern architecture often incorporates staircases without risers to achieve an open-air, minimalistic look.

stair components

The rise is the vertical height between two consecutive treads. The landing is the horizontal platform between two successive flights of a staircase and facilitates the change of direction of the flight. A landing that extends for the full width of the staircase is known as a ‘half-space landing,’ while one that extends half the width is known as a ‘quarter-space landing.’

The nosing is the part of the tread that projects beyond the face of the riser and its length is equal to the width of the stair. Choose from a variety of designs, such as bull nosing, waterfall nosing, and square nosing. But a nose is not an essential part of a tread. Plenty of staircases, especially contemporary designs, are constructed without a nose.

Other components of a staircase include the flight, headroom or headway (the vertical height between the tread of one flight and the ceiling of the overhead construction, handrail, baluster, balustrade, pitch or slope, run, soffit, newel post, string or stringers, and spandrel.

What Are the Different Types of Staircases?

When choosing a staircase design, you’ll quickly discover there are numerous types of staircases, many of which have unusual names like ‘switchback stairs.’ Here’s a sample from a long list of stair types:

Straight staircase

This is the simplest staircase design and the easiest type of stair to ascend and descend as well as build. Choose from one of two types: straight or straight with a landing.

L-shaped staircase

This is basically a straight staircase with a turn or a 90-degree bend. It’s sometimes referred to as a ‘quarter-turn stair’ because its landing is either closer to the top or bottom.

U-shaped staircase

This staircase consists of two parallel flights of stairs joined by a 180-degree turn landing. It’s also known as ‘switchback stairs’ or ‘half-turn stairs.

Spiral staircase

In a spiral staircase, the steps attach to a center pole. Though it’s a space-saving design, it’s not easy to ascend or descend.

Winding or curved staircase

These terms refer to a staircase that makes a turn without including an intermediate landing or platform to provide a flat rectangular turning space.

What Are the Typical Dimensions of a Staircase?

Staircase dimensions are an important part of staircase safety. Here are the answers to three common questions regarding standard dimensions for staircase design:


Next Steps

With the RoomSketcher App, you can create high-quality floor plans and 3D visualizations quickly, easily, and affordably. What are you waiting for? Make the stairs a focal point of your interior design and take your home’s entryway to a whole new level!

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