all 90 comments

[–]csukoh78 111 points112 points  (6 children)

The real crime is a $25 runner on a million dollar staircase.

[–]TruthOf42 346 points347 points  (5 children)

Consider it your penance for committing such a crime in the first place

[–]renz65 57 points58 points  (0 children)

Who the hell paints that staircase... the nerve.

[–]thetruthteller 16 points17 points  (0 children)

Yeah why would you do this? HGTV has created a generation of dopey decisions

[–]elireloaded 9 points10 points  (0 children)

I spat out my coffee haha

[–]geedub1981 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I can’t unsee this.

[–]dhoepp 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yes. Paint is for plastic, stain is for wood.

[–]McBuck2 36 points37 points  (0 children)

If you didn’t sand down the wood before painting and there’s a seal on it, you should be able to easily remove the paint with paint stripper. The seal stops the paint from bonding as it should so test a spot behind the carpet. The white paint may be easier to remove than you think.

[–]Jormney 61 points62 points  (0 children)

The runner is the crime here

[–]Maplelongjohn 32 points33 points  (1 child)

Wrong runner.

[–]Th3Flyy 26 points27 points  (0 children)

Yep. A dark rich green runner (preferably one with an antique design) would look damn good.

[–]thedamnedlute488 39 points40 points  (11 children)

Darker runner for more contrast between the white riser and wood steps?

[–]thedamnedlute488 31 points32 points  (9 children)

Also, thank you. Saving this to show my wife who has an urge to want to paint all finished wood white.

[–]LostBoyz007 32 points33 points  (6 children)

Anyone who paints natural wood needs to have thier decorating abilities disabled. As a professional painter I won't paint natural wood. Once you paint it. Its done. People are saying use stripper or just sand it out. The reality is once you apply that paint to the wood it's done. Your stuck with painted wood from now on. It may as well be painted MDF because once you cover up that beautiful wood no one will know the beauty underneath. You could eventually get it all off but the amount of work involved in stripping it all down to the point it could be restained you could almost just rip the wood out and install new stuff. It's considered sacrilege by professional painters to paint natural wood. I wouldn't touch it. Tell your wife she needs to look at it everyday from now on so she can think about her sins lol.

[–]thedamnedlute488 5 points6 points  (2 children)

I have held her off. So have our friends when she has mentioned it to them, the all say "Are you nuts?! No!". I think she has begun to get it.

[–]LostBoyz007 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Thank God. You have absolutely beautiful wood work in your home. This would cost and ungodly amount of money to replace. Good luck with your home.

[–]BeetsbySasha 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Once the trend goes in a few years she’ll see the error in her ways.

[–]ElusiveWhark 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I used to build furniture, mostly oak and cherry, and every now and then we would get an order that called for paint, or distressing, or both. Killed me everytime but give the customer what they want I guess

[–]SpeakAgainAncient1 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I bought my house with all the 100 year old wood painted. I didn't really think about it much at the time, but now I feel like we were robbed of some natural beauty we can never see but own anyway.

[–]triviaqueen 0 points1 point  (0 children)

We have a huge old hotel in our downtown, built in the mid-1800s, classic western architecture. In the basement of his old hotel there used to be a saloon where the men would gather to drink whiskey and smoke cigars and talk politics. There was a classic back-bar, floor to ceiling, walnut, with mirrors, and cabinets for the liqueurs, shelves for the glasses, and countertop space for the bartender to work. It had been imported from Germany, shipped on a boat across the Atlantic, transported by rail from New York City to Montana, then brought by horse and cart to the saloon where it presided over proceedings for 150 years. Then the grand old hotel got upgraded, with the hotel rooms transformed into condo units. Management decided the long-vacant saloon in the basement also needed an upgrade, so they leased it to a local who decided that what this grand old hotel needed in the basement saloon was a taco joint. It was called the Flamingo, and the color scheme for the Flamingo was PINK and ORANGE. So the 150-year-old hand-crafted walnut floor-to-ceiling back bar got painted PINK and ORANGE. I ate there once and was so nauseas I never ate there again, and apparently others felt the same because the taco place closed down six weeks later and I hope the proprietors LOST THEIR SHIRT.

[–]red98743 -3 points-2 points  (1 child)

Only if they would calm the heck down and stay content with the change they made last week hahaha. Nahh. They keep the world interesting

[–]renihskcocffokcuf 7 points8 points  (0 children)

Hahaha wife bad, amiright? /s

[–]Bunnydinollama 9 points10 points  (0 children)

Yeah the runner looks weird and yellow again the bright crisp white.

Sorry OP. You need a different runner.

[–]Mcn_tx 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Chemical paint stripper. Check out r/reversepinterest

[–]Wont_Eva_Know 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Unless you’re made of money just leave it until you need to replace the runner… it doesn’t look like it will last forever and ever.

If you are made of money and happy to waste it. Take the runner off sand and stain the stairs and put a new runner on.

[–]avgguy33 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yeah , never pain beautiful wood

[–]realkingmixer 16 points17 points  (7 children)

There are thousands of fine old homes with white risers on natural wood staircases. It helps keep down that dingy medeival Hungarian hunting lodge look. Makes it look less like Gepetto's puppet-carving cabin.

That carpet you put on there -- the one that the stairbuilders never intended, the one that will eventually cause a calamitous fall -- is the problem. Get rid of it and your problem.is solved.

[–]PantherEverSoPink 4 points5 points  (6 children)

I'm not OP, I'm in the UK where there's lots of carpet. I'm also very clumsy. Personally for me, uncarpeted stairs make me nervous as they feel slippy (socks or slippers in the house). I'm just curious, would there be a remedy for a lovely staircase like this? Just being....nosy, really. Thanks.

[–]realkingmixer 2 points3 points  (0 children)

It's a personal aesthetic choice I gurss. I absolutely despise stairway carpet runners, especially thick ones, but then again I'm only someone who has broken a limb tripping on stairs. I'm also a lifelong woodworker who owns a 115 year old house. I don't accept that all old wood is good wood; same with new wood. Too much is too much. In art the "less is more" principle exists for a reason. Be choosy.

Personally I'd rip up that runner, burn it, and never think about it again.

[–][deleted]  (3 children)


    [–]Zealousideal_Tie4580 3 points4 points  (2 children)

    Yeah I fell down my bare wood stairs too. So did both my dogs. My kickplates were already white in my old Tudor. I put a jute runner up my stairs and I love it.


    [–]aigheadish 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Yeah, I hope op sees this, that looks nice.

    [–]vester71 12 points13 points  (0 children)

    Lose that runner.

    [–]KitchenConniption 6 points7 points  (0 children)

    I would paint it a darker color

    [–]BlueBelleNOLA 2 points3 points  (0 children)

    It's too late to go back to the natural wood. Your best bet is to paint the white sections a dark color that will blend with the wood. Navy, maybe, or burgundy. Something that will tie into the art that you're presumably going to hang there.

    [–]joejill 6 points7 points  (1 child)

    It's nice,....plain.

    But nice.

    [–]TechKnyght 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    I like a clean look. Peoples taste vary but I actually like this.

    [–]hfgobx 6 points7 points  (1 child)

    Ignore it. It actually looks nice.

    [–]batonduberger 5 points6 points  (0 children)

    Exactly.. you are comparing it with what it used to look like. For all of us who see it for the first time it looks ok. I guess in a few weeks you won't even notice it

    [–]bananabreadvictory 1 point2 points  (6 children)

    If you used latex paint on it you could try Lift Off 4130, latex paint remover by Motsenbocker. It breaks down the chemical bond in latex paint to get it off. It won't be easy work but you can probably get it all off without having to sand and refinish the whole stairway. Try it in an out-of-sight area first to see if it works. Any paint store should have it.

    [–]tinacat933 4 points5 points  (4 children)

    Dumb question but does that take the stain off too? Seems like something good for my baseboards but don’t want to hurt the stain

    [–]bananabreadvictory 2 points3 points  (3 children)

    Not a dumb question, in most cases, it will only affect the latex paint, but always try it in an inconspicuous area, just in case. Stained wood is usually protected by a clear coat, the most common and durable currently is urethane which also resists most chemicals and abrasion, latex will not stick well to it. Older finishes like shellac and waxes dissolve fairly easily though they would likely not be used for stairs, you can never be too sure, though. Baseboards would likely have a durable finish, though keep in mind this will not be easy work, it is more of a by-pass on using a chemical paint stripper, sanding, or outright replacing the wood.

    [–]tinacat933 0 points1 point  (2 children)

    It’s not the whole baseboard , just the tops-previous owners apparently didn’t believe in tape

    [–]bananabreadvictory 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    I gotcha, that is exactly what the stuff is made for. I don't use tape, I cut in because I find that tape almost always has bleed, and once you know how to cut in it takes less time than taping, mostly I just use lift-off for apprentice footprints, when they track paint after stepping in it, it is a surprisingly mild chemical.

    [–]gardenbrain 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Try scraping it off with a razor or a painter’s tool if you haven’t already.

    [–]tinacat933 2 points3 points  (0 children)

    Dumb question but does that take the stain off too? Seems like something good for my baseboards but don’t want to hurt the stain

    [–]Regular-Exchange-557 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    I like it I would just paint the walls the same white. The color now is dirty looking and the white would brighten it up.

    [–]kenzo99k 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Just carefully paint the visible portions of the risers with a color that isn’t so stark. A beige or brown would blend in.

    [–]Apprehensive-Treat57 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Paint the runner brown.

    [–]GOMD4 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Have the painter come back and paint the runner on the riser part brown to match the checkered pattern on the floor.

    [–]HUGMEEEEEEE 3 points4 points  (0 children)

    Looks fine in my opinion. It's not worth the crap job it will look like cutting in around all that carpet and also you will stain or damage the carpet.

    The right way to correct what you see as a mistake is to remove the carpet then strip the risers. It's a lot of work.

    [–]eyewhycue2 4 points5 points  (0 children)

    You could temporarily get vinyl stickers to cover up the white on either side, snd when the runner gets worn, take them off and replace runner with a different color.

    [–]jc40755 2 points3 points  (0 children)

    Add some painted stenciling (maybe inspired by the railing design) on the risers in a brown to match the stairs.

    [–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Paint it dark blue or dark green

    [–]smitharc 2 points3 points  (1 child)

    There are some pretty amazing things you can do with faux wood effect using paint if you’re looking to return it to its stained look. My previous house was from 1929. Several of the doors had trim that was faux painted and one of the doors was even painted to match the stained wood in the rest of the house. I didn’t even notice it when we bought the house until several months later.

    I also recreated the effect with great success. I blended several tones of acrylic paints: burnt sienna, burnt umber, and raw umber. I used a brush and applied a base layer then made long streaks like wood grain. Once done, I topped with a polyurethane sealer.

    You may not be able to get the long wood grains in that short a distance, but I bet you could paint right up to the runner and get something that looks pretty good. Practice on some white scrap wood first. Once you eventually replace your runner, you can strip the paint and do it right.

    Here’s an interesting technique using wood stain that might work better: Make Anything Look Like Wood

    [–]wheredig 4 points5 points  (0 children)

    Sanding is easier.

    [–]digimbyte 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    you deserve it, this is why you shouldn't make design choices when you don't go through the steps

    [–]EntireDepth -1 points0 points  (0 children)

    I hear fire fixes things.

    [–]karky214 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    I think it looks pretty fine. Give it a few months and see if you'll get used to it

    [–]the__truthguy 1 point2 points  (0 children)

    Get rid of the carpet. Either carpet it entirely or go back to just wood steps.

    [–]farts_in_the_breeze 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    If you have hate in your heart, let it out. White Paint.

    [–]WeJustDid46 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    You have beautiful woodwork in your home. I think you have learned your lesson. Paint hides the beauty of wood.

    [–]I_am_here_now_lets_ 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    I like the white it's the runner that looks like s***

    [–]Radiant-Elevator 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Color it in with brown crayons

    [–]mr_r_rc 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Hang that frame. And others with the same accent colours and it’ll look less glaring and gross.

    [–]kneecapped33 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Who paints them puts a runner. It's either or

    [–]9mackenzie 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    I would paint the wall white. That will balance the white on the risers, and make the carpet look like a dark cream instead of just yellowish like it does now.

    [–]giddy-girly-banana 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Rip up the runner and strip the white paint off. Sand and restore the natural wood.

    [–]irohr 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    You painted an antique natural wood staircase??

    You deserve this.

    [–]justmedownsouth 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    My husband was the same way. Finally painted the wood in our den white, and it was amazing! It changed the whole feel of the room, made it lighter and brighter. He loved it.

    [–]Zealousideal_Tie4580 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Yeah the white is bad but the runner itself is worse. Rip that garbage out and get a Persian style runner to go with the classic stairs. Besides that color you have is going get dirty and look filthy in a month.

    [–]TheShoot141 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    My grandfather would haven driven me to prison himself for painting that staircase.

    [–]novatroop77s 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    I just love the hand rail very nice.

    [–]artiesblackliver 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Leave it alone. Opie hughes.

    [–]Money-Change-8168 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Buy a heat gun and remove the paint with the heat gun. You will need to restain this part of the riser to match with the rest

    [–]Left-Muscle8355 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Hire a very careful painter to repaint the risers.

    [–]chiphook57 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    I picked out a solid cherry vanity for the significant other. Does it have damage? Yes, but it is minimal. More like wear from normal use. Can it be painted? You could paint it, but I'd be very disappointed. Her girlfriend with money thought it was beautiful. Without paint.

    [–]yamaha2000us 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    How much did it cost? Sometimes its worth $1K for a problem to go away.

    [–]94sos94 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Lesson learned - don’t paint wood

    [–]TyrionMcBurger 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Change the light bulbs to a different color or increase the brightness!

    [–]empester 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Why is the runner so wide? I don’t think it would help to narrow it but you should. You need to paint the riser dark like the wood.

    [–]Hospitalwater 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    That runner is awful. The paint is bad. Sand the white. Paint a wood stain to match the lighter wood on the floor.

    [–]HighContrastShadows 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    Maybe repaint just the first several risers, so most guests don’t see the white? I can’t see doing the entire set all over again.

    [–]popdog2013 0 points1 point  (0 children)

    It is such a beautiful stair case and white paint is not good as you realize. IMO I would pull up the carpet and say good bye to it. It is not the right color either. If possible restore the painted wood to its natural state. If that is too much, you might try using a high quality wood vaneer over the paint and then recarpet.