antique hardwood stair runner

For over 15 years I have visited customer’s homes, attended home shows, enjoyed business networking events, been approached at every possible school event of my children and the flooring discussions always start like this, “So what is the latest style in flooring?”  What, you may ask, is my response? Well this short article, geared towards flooring for stairs, will answer this question.

I am a huge proponent that everyone should select flooring that fits with their lifestyle, not with the trendy ideas of the day.  Let me give you an example.  Last year (and in reality a few years before and many months since then), the wide variety of DIY TV shows displayed these beautiful wood stairs – no carpeting, just gorgeous wood.  Ah, what a lovely clean view!  So rich looking – and what joy, just wash off any dirt and it looks beautiful again!  So, what does America do?  Why, pull off the carpet and go with this beautiful wood look.  And it does look beautiful.  And it is easy to take care of keep looking clean.  The joy lasts for usually 24 hours or less.  Then the first person slips.  Usually the discussion goes like this:

  • Phase 1: “Whoa, aren’t these new stairs great?!”
  • Phase 2: “Holy cow are these suckers slippery!”
  • Phase 3: “Dad, Jimmy fell again! We have to do something!!!”

And then, it is time to call Floor Coverings International of Wheaton and Naperville.  In this situation, when wood has already been installed on the stair treads, then a stair runner needs to be selected and installed.  Selecting the correct colors, texture, pattern and fiber type are all the tricky decisions that Floor Coverings International can help guide you through.  After all, the goal is to select flooring that fits your lifestyle.  A stair runner that is the correct quality, style and color can make a beautiful accent and turn your stairs into a safe haven for all!

Now, if you have not installed wood stairs in your home yet, be aware that not every set of stairs was originally constructed to have wood installed over them.  Many construction stairs (ones that were built out of 2” pine planks and then nailed separately over pine risers) were not put together straight and square.  This makes it difficult to build a quality looking set of stairs over a product that was not originally constructed straight.  It can get quite expensive to make this happen so that then end result is beautiful.  Many times, installing a beautiful patterned, good quality broadloom carpet on the original stairs is the best options in these types of situations.

Finally, whatever you do, do NOT let anyone “build” stairs out of strip (2 ¼” wide pieces) wood.  If you are going to go for hardwood stairs, then be sure to have solid wood treads installed.  Then, depending on the finished style you are going for, you can put in paint grade risers or solid wood stained risers.

Hopefully you have found the above information somewhat helpful.  Feel free to call 630-653-6100 or email anytime for more information on stair coverings!


Donna Teagle

Floor Coverings International – Serving Wheaton and Naperville, Illinois

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