There are indeed many components to consider in the design of a staircase, ranging from – what materials to use, what style of balustrading, what colour, tone and texture you want, right through to what aesthetic you are trying to achieve. Most importantly, and as staircases are often ‘big expenses’ in any home, it is important to ensure the staircase complements the architecture and interior design of the broader scheme. For example, a glass and steel design lends itself to more modern, contemporary and even minimalist interiors, whilst all timber staircases are typically a more traditional look.

However, if you are after a modern, bold yet traditional style staircase, then a variation on black and white could be for you. Thanks to Interior Designers like Mary Macdonald, Jeff Andrews and Australia’s Greg Natale we have been given some great guidance on how to achieve a look of ‘Modern Glamour’ using traditional architectural features and colours. These can often be ‘toned down’ or enhanced simply through the use of varying gloss levels or by having one colour more pronounced than the other. It is hard to get it wrong when using such strong classic colours as black and white, however as a guide for colours on your black and white staircase, I find that this is, generally speaking, the most common colour combination – black stair treads, white risers, black handrails, with white baluster and/or either a black or white newel post. Should you go for a white newel post, you can also do a black newel cap, or finial, which will make the cap appear as a seamless continuation of the hand rail. Below are a few images illustrating various existing black and white stair cases.

Mary Macdonald stairs

A staircase designed by Mary Macdonald with a beautiful sisal floor runner and brass stair rods


A Jeff Andrews designed staircase with all black wrought iron balustrading



Hand rail and newel post in gloss black


black and white staircase 2

A statement staircase in gloss black contrasts beautifully to this modern interior


black and white staircase designs

A touch of green adds life to this space


black and white staircase design

Timber stair treads, white balusters and end post with gloss black handrail and end cap


black and white staircase

Black and white lends itself to most other colours, and looks fabulous with the navy blue used on this interiors wall paneling


traditional entry with black and white stairs

The black and white checkered floor in this entry really sets off this black and white staircase.

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