That moment when we realized I made a big mistake on the measurements for our stairs, but we were already too far into the project, and too cheap to redo it. Therefore we were forced to get a bit creative!
It’s my fault.
I take TOTAL and COMPLETE blame for this one!
Our D.I.Y stair remodel (oops) happened like this…
Mr. Hubs, (bless his dear little heart) was at Home Depot and called me.
Mr. Hubs – “Hey, can you measure the stairs for me so I can pick up the materials?”
Me- “Um.. sure!” (although I was a bit apprehensive about this because math, numbers and I don’t mix well!)
So I grabbed the measuring tape and measured the top step because I was upstairs at the time. I gave him that number and he did the math to purchase as many boards as we needed to complete this D.I.Y stair project.
Mr. Hubs came home and got to work outside cutting the wooden boards to the stair measurement I gave him.
Once again, bless his dear heart for having complete and total trust in his dear, dear, wife… but Mr. Hubs should have double-checked my measurements before cutting!
I mean, this isn’t our first rodeo guys. We’ve done now two house flips, so remodeling projects aren’t foreign to us.
Check out these recent projects in our current house:
So you would think, surely, SURELY, I can measure stairs correctly. ?
But like I said, I still take FULL responsibility for this D.I.Y stair remodel (oops).
Here’s what the stairs looked like when we first moved into this old farmhouse:
We painted the walls white, added new lighting, and then removed the old carpet and tack strips from the stairs.
Now we were left with the exposed wood, and that means we were dealing with some major old house stench.
For the floor area, I did a few coats of Kilz primer…
Before we could begin installing the new stairs, I needed to lay down the small area of flooring on the floor. Mr. Hubs removed the first step so I could get to work.
The reason we were completely removing the steps, was because we were going to build new ones just as we did at our first house.
Our first home’s black and white stairs that we built:
In our old house, I absolutely LOVED the black and white stairs we built, so we wanted to mimic this.
But in our current house, we have more of a grey-ish color flooring, so we decided we were going to do dark grey and white stairs for this stair remodel project.
While I was laying down the laminate flooring, Mr. Hubs was busy staining the stairs outside.
TIP- When staining stairs, make sure to stain underneath a few inches, like we did in the photo below. This needs to be done, because if not, the unstained wood will show underneath each stair overhang.
And so, the installation of the new stairs began. Removing one old step and riser at a time, and then replacing with new white stair risers and stained grey treads.
The first few went in okay, but then Mr. Hubs started noticing something…
He noticed that the white riser was having some gaps issues between it, and the wall.
Nothing major. Nothing some caulking couldn’t fix!
Or at least that’s what we thought!
He called me over and asked about me my measurement skills, and I just kinda looked at him like:
Well, here’s the thing — we live in an old house, which means lots of random wavy walls and no wall is the same, which makes measuring super difficult.
I literally should have measured EVERY.SINGLE.STEP!
But, I didn’t.
Notice the little gaps between the white stair riser and the wall?
Well as we moved up the staircase, the gaps got bigger…
And then it hits us!
Houston, we have a problem!
…because oh boy, I’m going to be in BIG trouble!
Now I know what you’re thinking.
You’re thinking, why didn’t we stop what we were doing when we noticed the gaps, and just go buy more wood to do it right?
Well, that’s a dandy idea!
I mean, it really is! And you should totally get a gold star for thinking of that brilliant idea…
But see, what you might not know about us is that we are just a little bit on the cheap side. Therefore, we didn’t want to pay for more wood. So, sorry, no thanks, but great idea!
So we had to get creative!
In the midst of doing our D.I.Y stair remodel, it was about the same time that we were doing all our new flooring in the house, as well as the trim work.
Mr. Hubs grabbed some pieces of trim, made a little cut here and a little cut there. Did a little bit of this and a little bit of that, and came up with this:
Bye, bye gaps, and hello “trimmed??” stairs!
Well, I think I can safely say that our D.I.Y (oops) staircase remodel was fixed, and I think the stairs look just fine with their “fancy??” trim work.
I also don’t think anyone would know why it’s truly there unless we told them the story. They’ll probably just assume we wanted fancier stairs.
Now before we go, let’s do a before recap and then some grand finale afters.