Sunday, November 21, 2010

Before and After in the Stairwell

Before renovation, skylight with light fixture

Skylight removed

View from the top of walls, chandelier, new iron stair rail.

The transformation in the stairwell is amazing. 

Before: How it looked
The wall of the stairwell is curved as shown in the view of the ceiling.  The railing was a honey yellow oak.  The ceiling included a blue and clear colored stain glass skylight which was surrounded by oak and from which a light fixture (glass and gold colored metal) was suspended.  The skylight was odd because the actual skylight in the roof was not centered over this feature.  Therefore, during the daytime it always looked half-dimmed.  The shape of the skylight didn't compliment the curved walls.

Possible Solutions
My architect suggested changing out the stained glass with a specialty glass and having the oak trim of the skylight painted white to blend into the ceiling. A decorator who was helping me suggested removing the skylight and dry walling the ceiling. I thought the decorator's suggestion worked best for me because I would not be left with a feature which would compete visually with other elements in the stairway.

After:  What we did
Once I decided to remove the skylight, I realized light fixture would be the focus; I found a very beautiful antique which was rewired.

Additionally, we decided to replace the old oak stair rail with one fabricated from iron. We wanted some scroll work but tried to keep the design more simplified because the curve of the staircase is fairly tight. The iron fabricator painted the ironwork a dark brown/black color.We were very pleased with the results.

We used Dunn Edwards paint "Gourmet Honey" on the walls.

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