Whether you're building a home from scratch or refurbishing an run down older building, one of the most important features in your new home will be the staircase.
So much more than just the means of moving between levels, the staircase is a statement of your personal style, and arguably the most important design element in your new home. It's also the first thing visitors will see on entering the hallway, as well as the most architectural element in your home.
As the centrepiece of your home, a feature staircase will enhance the beauty, form and function of your living space, creating something unique and iconic.
You may be wondering: what other function can stairs have? But as the available space to build and develop get smaller, especially in the capital, designers, architects and homeowners are finding new ways to get more out of their staircases than simply going up and down.
The most common example of this is combining the stairs with shelving. If you've got an attic full of books but no room for bookcases, why not have a shelf under each stair? And they don't have to house books – you can put whatever you like on them: ornaments, art, photos, collectables – or for a more traditional look – drawers.
The ultimate solution for a confined space has to be the spiral staircase. Modern designs based around a simple metal or wooden frame can fit into surprisingly small spaces. But they don't have to feel cold and mechanical.
Creating your stairs from the same wood as your flooring or other furniture is a great way to bring your stairs into the bigger picture of your home. Using natural materials will add warmth and style to your spiral stairs, without compromising on their strong architectural appeal.
In both large and small spaces, the curves of your spiral staircase will provide an interesting contrast to the rest of your home's straight lines and rectangular shapes, creating interest, warmth and atmosphere.
In contrast to traditional staircase design, a floating staircase seems to simply be an extension of your hallway wall, unsupported from beneath.
With or without a hand rail, a floating staircase will create an impressive sense of space, drawing the eye to the areas around it.
If you're after a statement staircase suitable for construction in a wide range of natural and man-made materials, the floating design is a strong contender.
If your furniture and linens can all be 'shabby chic', then why not your stairs, too? Except there's nothing shabby about a solid timber-built rustic staircase.
What it lacks in curves, round edges and moulded fittings it makes up for in simple, functional appeal, and striking visual appearance. Giving either a distressed or unvarnished finish will certainly add to the rustic appeal that's going to add bags of charm to your older house or timber-frame building.
Why not build in matching under-stair storage for the maximum impact of style and utility?
If your home is all about the light, then a glass staircase is perfect for you. Offering an opulent, high-tech look, glass stairs are an excellent choice for large, architectural spaces or industrial building conversions.
Combined with more traditional staircase materials such as timber and steel, a glass staircase can deliver the best of both worlds: a meeting of modern and traditional that creates an impressive sense of light and space.
Specially strengthened glass means that safety is no more a concern than with any other staircase, so you can relax and enjoy the stunning centrepiece of your home.
If you're interested to know what kind of staircase would suit your home, why not get in touch for a no-obligation, informal chat.