The $81 Stair Makeover….REVEALED!

 You’ve been so patient….so encouraging…so excited for me. Thanks! I am still in the middle of polyurethane all the coats on the treads….but you can see the final product.
A few of you have asked how many hours this project has taken me…well the first phase (clearing out the carpet and pulling all staples and tacks) took me 2.5 hours–mind you I did this by myself on a Friday. Phase 2 took Bill and I from about 11:30 on Saturday morning till about 4:30 (that includes prep work, sanding, and cleaning up all the dust!). And on Sunday I took about an hour and did all the scraping with the stripping remover stuff. Phase 3 was the painting process and that took about an hour per coat…then I would let it dry for 3 hours and a re coat. So I think you could accomplish this in one weekend (minus the polyurethane step…because that requires some dry time).
If you haven’t seen the first few post on these stairs you can read all about it here…. Phase 1, Phase 2, Phase 3 …..
Electric candles people…not to worry—wouldn’t advise real candles on newly lacquered stairs…just sayin
Ta Da!

I am coating the stair treads with Minwax Fast-Drying Satin. I am doing every other step. I put one coat on, let it dry 4 hours; then placed another coat. I am doing 3 coats on just the treads. I placed a small piece of tape on the steps that I was allowed to step on (just a mental note for me!) I am using a foam brush. Place a fan at the bottom of stairs to aid in quick drying. It is about $11 for a can.
I know they look dark here but I wanted to show how pretty they look at night with these electric candles on…

He’s impressed….my biggest supporter ;) We feel so satisfied knowing how much we saved and that fabulous feeling that comes from doing something with your own bare hands.
Goodbye worn out carpet….HELLO pretty wood stairs!
I would say they look like a million bucks—-but then again….I only used $81…and a bit of sweat—but that is always a good thing!!
Video Tutorial is here….
Coming up….more foyer remodeling…including new paint color and some fabulous trim projects!!
 Stay tuned…
Giveaway still up on the sidebar! Happy Weekend!!!
Sharing Today:
Couldn’t have done it without my Purdy Paint brush!!!!
WhisperWood Cottage

Be Inspired to be Clever ;)
Tracie Stoll is a wife, mom and has a passion for creating new things. On her blog she is constantly sharing ways to inspire her readers to be clever in their own home. Since 2010 Tracie has been sharing DIY projects, crafting, remodeling and decorating along with some easy tasty recipes…all on a mindful budget. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton where she studied visual art and communications. Tracie has been featured on popular sites such as Country Living, CNN living, Good Housekeeping, Better Homes and Gardens, Huffington Post, Apartment Therapy, Seventeen and Design Sponge. She is also a member of the True Value Blog Squad & Martha’s Circle of trusted bloggers.
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60 thoughts on “The $81 Stair Makeover….REVEALED!

  1. Lori@KitchenFunk

    Beautiful!!!! And wow, SUCH a dramatic change. You must feel you're living in a fancy new house! What a great job you did, it looks absolutely professional! ~Lori

  2. JBarone

    What a awesome job you guys did. I love the new look clean and updated. Congrats on your new stairs!

  3. Stitch a Wish Designs

    WOW!! What a fantastic job you did, they look beauty-ful! I have been wanting to paint our stair treads darker…I'll have to show this post to my man to see what he thinks. Thanks for your inspiration!

  4. Three Sisterz

    Wow! They look so beautiful and elegant. I love the clean look of the paint. I don't think I could have tackled such a job myself, but you make it look so easy. Can't wait to see what's in store for the foyer!

  5. Kindra-At Home With K

    I just went back and started reading from phase one. What a wonderful transformation! I really want to do this to my steps!

  6. Veronica Hill

    Oh, WOW!!! They are just beautiful! Right now the steps from my main level to my basement (that soon will be a finished basement) are soooo ugly ~ this inspires me to do the extra work to make them lovely like yours! GREAT JOB!

  7. 1ne Proud Mama

    I have been waiting for the REVEAL! It looks so awesome. You did a great job. I wish i had the energy to take on projects like that!

  8. Galexi Cupcakes

    OMG..the stairs look amazing. You have so inspired me to go home and start sanding, painting and staining!! Great job!! I'll send pics when I'm done, which at this rate will be in the Spring.

  9. Safe and Healthy Solutions

    Great job! I have been thinking about re-doing our stairs and I think your post just confirmed my decision. They look great! Quick question…how deep are your stair treads? My husband thinks ours are too narrow without the carpet on them.

  10. Centsational Girl

    Awesome Tracie, aren't you so so happy? Wow, what a difference, well done girl, look what a little DIY can do !!!! Fantastic!!!

  11. Hi, I'm Suz!!

    You did a great job!! What an inspiration!! Thanks so much for sharing the whole journey with us!!!
    I'm afraid I'm going to start doing all of these wonderful projects I'm finding to our house, then we won't want to move!! hhmmmmm maybe that's not a bad thing!!

    Have a wonderful weekend!!

    Hugs ~~ Suz

  12. Hi, I'm Suz!!

    Oh – – Tracie – I just posted your Stair project on my blog! I LOVE how they turned out! Come visit me!!

    Hugs ~~ Suz

  13. Jenni

    That is absolutely gorgeous! The difference between the before and after is stunning, and the result beyond amazing! :) I love how you added the (electric) candles to each step, too. :) Now I just wish I had stairs!

    I am so glad I found your blog, and am following you now! :)

    {Beautiful Nest}

  14. Jena @ Involving Color

    Tracie, your stairs look fantastic! I love how they turned out. So glad I came across your blog. I'm a new follower.

  15. Rachael

    Wow gorgeous transformation! I'd love it if you came by and shared on my weekend linky party today! Were you lucky enough to have real wood treads underneath the carpet? I want to do mine so badly, but I peeked and it's mdf :(

  16. Amy of WhisperWood Cottage and Junkologie

    Amazing! I've been loving watching the progress through each of your posts! Such a great transformation!! Thanks for linking up again at WWC!

  17. Susan

    WOW Tracie!
    You did a fabulous job on the stairs!
    I too have carpeting on my stairs.. thanks for the inspiration!


  18. Handy Man, Crafty Woman

    This looks really great! We had some old carpet on our stairs, too, and we peeled it off and redid our stairway. Much better!

  19. Angel

    This was so inspiring. I'm send it to my hubs to read too. We are SO doing this! But I have a feeling that our steps under our same nasty beige carpet, aren't as pretty as yours. I think they are particle board so we'll have to reface them. Grrr…

  20. Shelly

    This looks so awesome. You make me wish I had stairs so I could do this too. (Minus the blood sweat and tears because I'm sure it took a lot of those) It looks beautiful.

  21. Kim @ NewlyWoodwards

    This is beautiful. I love that you painted the steps instead of staining. So rich. I've been thinking about trying this on our stairs, but you've just totally put me over the edge. Gorgeous.

  22. Lisa

    Awesome! Beautiful! I'm inspired to get started on my treads – thank you! (I already pulled up the carpet, painted the risers & spindles, and saved the fun job of the treads for the warmer weather.) Now that I see your final product I'm actually excited to get started! Thanks for sharing!

  23. MrsJenB

    SO beautiful and dramatic with those candles! My husband is NOT gonna be happy when I tell him that this is going on my project list – which is already a thousand miles long! haha

  24. Its So Very Cheri

    Check out our TOP 10 Post and be sure to check out EXCITING CHANGES at THE DIY CLUB post as well–REALLY EXCITING!!


  25. Jenni

    Congratulations on making the Top 10! Your stairs are so beautiful and you did a wonderful job on them! :)

    belle & sparrow

  26. Chris

    Great job on the stairs! We are fixing to do ours as well (I think I have the same carpet as you!) and I can't wait to see the transformation! Thanks for sharing!

  27. Sarah

    Beautiful job! I have been dying to do the exact same thing to our staircase. I have a feeling ours may be a bit more work because not all of the wood is in tact. I am definitely inspired by this!

  28. Pine Tree Home

    Don't you just LOVE it! I do. I did almost the same thing on my basement stairs and couldn't be happier. I wonder what took me so long. I do need to go back and add some poly on mine–spring project.

  29. M and M plus 3

    I just finished doing this for my daughters stairs to her room. I need to go back yet and do some touching up from where I pulled the tape off. I haven't varnished mine, haven't really thought about it since I used porch paint. I love the look, yours looks great!

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  31. Dan

    Hi there. I am painting the steps down to my basement and locking into sealing them. I was wondering since you did this over a year ago, how the steps are holding up?

    Thanks for your time.

  32. Kachy

    Can I ask why you decided to paint and not stain the treads? I’d also like to know how they’ve held up for you as I have three little boys running around! Thanks!


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