Thursday, September 4, 2014

the stair runner

I am soooooo excited about how this project turned out!! It's been a long time coming, and the end result was even better than I hoped it would be.

You may remember that a couple of months after we moved in, Jon took a little tumble down the stairs and broke his ribs. Turns out bare wood floors and socks aren't a good combination. Since then, we've been planning on adding a stair runner. We wanted the safety factor, but I also loved the idea of adding some design interest to the otherwise plain, boring stairs.

The problem is that we have a lot of stairs. The two upper staircases that connect the three main floors of the house are within eyesight of each other and you see them as soon as you open the front door. Whatever we chose to cover them with would have a major design impact on the entire house. I was completely overwhelmed by choosing a stair runner that would set the tone for everything else in our home.

It all started with a little entry rug.
Enter the Dash & Albert zigzag rug. My In-Laws bought us the 2'x3' version of this rug to use as our front door mat last fall. I walked by it every day for at least 6 months before the lightbulb finally went off - I should use that rug to cover the stairs!

I mean, why not?! I knew I loved the rug and how it looked with our wood floors. I loved the colors and graphic chevron pattern. Not to mention that since the rug had been serving as our heavily used front door mat for months, I could vouch for it's high quality and excellent dirt-hiding abilities. Luckily for me, the rug came in a runner length, and it was the exact width I needed for my stairs. I was so happy I almost cried.

I called my favorite carpet installer to see if it would be possible to retro-fit the rug as stair runner. He said he could make it happen so I ordered six (6!) rugs and crossed my fingers. This was either going to be really great or really horrible.

Installation day was a bit nerve-racking. Per usual, we ran into a few minor glitches. I was nervous so I hid downstairs and vowed not to look until they were finished. Ta-Da! It looked amazing! They did such a great job matching the pattern and retro-fitting six individual rugs to look like one seamless stair runner. I was completely blown away. It also helped that the installers loved it too. The poor guys were thrilled to be installing something other than the norm beige carpet.
Now that wall nook is just dying for some attention.
Don't worry, little buddy, I haven't forgotten about you.
These colors. Swoon.
The 2nd staircase leading up to our master bedroom got some runner love too.
Getting dizzy yet?
It makes such a fun statement. My stairs went from boring to fab in one afternoon. Since the rug is a flat woven wool, it also has great traction. Looks great + added safety = win, win. Now I plan on using the colors in the rug as a starting point for the color schemes of the living room and dining room. It's almost more inspiration than I can handle.

I really didn't know I could gush this much about a rug, but apparently I can. I think I'm just proud of myself for pulling the trigger on a bold design. Playing it safe is for the birds. I'm so happy I took the chance. I love walking into my home. It makes me happy to have a space that is really starting to reflect our personality. If you are having trouble being brave....just go for it. You might surprise yourself.