Home Tour: Staircase Makeover + Refinished Hardwoods

Outside of our master bathroom renovation I think our staircase makeover and flooring have been among our biggest transformations in our new home! Let’s take a look at what we were working with…




Hardwoods Refinishing
We knew refinishing our hardwoods would be a pretty penny to do but we are beyond happy we did it now…because had we not, we probably would have never done it! Also, this project (and interior paint) really transformed the house into home for us. It made our new space feel clean, updated, and more like us!

Originally we had planned to go super dark on our floors. In fact, Matt and I were both split between Jacobean for his vote and Dark Walnut for mine. But after receiving so many comments on my insta-stories advising us not to go dark, we reconsidered our stain. I owe you all a huge thanks for the stern warnings against being slaves to cleaning dark floors. So we asked for 4 more colors to review…

And then we had the kids run all over them to give them the ultimate dirt test and polled our friends a million times before selecting…

 50% Dark Walnut mixed with 50% Provincial. And we’ve been REALLY happy with them.

I almost cried happy tears when our hardwoods guy sent me this picture of the freshly stained floors (still very wet here)! A tremendous improvement from the well loved honey stained floors. We also replaced all of the floor return registers throughout the house. Most of the original vents were either broken or severely rusted out and disgusting…

I loved the wicker design on these registers. You can buy them from Amazon or if you’re frugal like me you can go to ebay and buy a set of $15 off $50 printable Lowes coupons for .99 and then buy your registers in quantities of 4 at a time from Lowes. It may not sound like much, but when you need like 20 registers, this savings adds up quickly! I placed all of my orders online for in-store pick-up and I also used ebates for cash back on all of my Lowes purchases! You can sign up for ebates here!

Staircase Banister

The next project was painting the banister. I knew painting the banister was a risky move but it was one I was
willing to take — and I’m so glad I did. I am obsessed with how it turned out. I wanted to go dark for a nice contrast, but not too dark since my walls were painted a super light grey. I spent many, many nights scrolling through Pinterest and researching paint colors. It finally came down to Benjamin Moore Wrought Iron and Sherwin Williams Tricorn Black.

We selected Benjamin Moore Wrought Iron and love that it’s a super dark grey instead of black! It perfectly contrasts our wall paint and flooring.



And because I just can’t get over the transformation, a side by side before and after picture:

The last few wish list items for this space are to find an entry way rug, a light pendant and something to put in the wall niche. Suggestions welcome!

Hardwood Floor Company: Hudson Hardwoods
Wall Paint Color: Benjamin Moore Gray Owl cut 50% in cashmere finish
Trim Color: Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace
Banister Color: Benjamin Moore Wrought Iron
Hardwood Stain: 50% Provincial + 50% Dark Walnut
Floor Registers




  1. Kathleen
    May 2, 2017 / 10:44 am

    Love it. Perfect balance of color! I am one of those who said don't go too dark…It looks fabulous!

  2. Kristen [Playground Prepster]
    May 2, 2017 / 10:59 am

    Looks wonderful!! Love the banister! We moved a year ago and did the same – refinished hardwoods/new paint. It really does make a difference!! I keep trying to find new registers but they seem to be a weird size 🙁 boooo!

  3. Sara Elizabeth Miller
    May 2, 2017 / 11:20 am

    absolutely gorgeous!!! It really changes the room!! I'm obsessed with your wall color against the floors!! What a difference these changes make to the room!!

  4. Beth Behme
    May 2, 2017 / 11:49 am

    Love them! And thank you for letting me know your stain colors…I did the same and absolutely think it is the perfect color!

  5. Kate
    May 2, 2017 / 12:01 pm

    Looks great!! Totally changes the entryway!

  6. Adrienne at Bentley, Like the Car
    May 2, 2017 / 12:21 pm

    I'm obsessed! Please come assist with my house…on a next to nothing budget. HAHA.

  7. Meredith
    May 2, 2017 / 12:54 pm

    Love it!! It looks amazing!

  8. LHWinstead
    May 2, 2017 / 1:03 pm

    This looks AMAZING — I absolutely love it!! Good choices!

  9. Laura LeaMond Nielson
    May 2, 2017 / 1:04 pm

    Looks wonderful! I would do a pretty mirror or a tobacco basket in wall nook

  10. Annie
    May 2, 2017 / 1:36 pm

    Oh my goodness, what a transformation! It looks SO good!!!! PS – I'll be referring back to this when the hardwood color decision has to happen!

  11. Owen Davis @ Davis Duo
    May 2, 2017 / 2:00 pm

    So gorgeous!! Love that wall color!

  12. Sarah Elizabeth
    May 2, 2017 / 2:21 pm

    The cubby we had in the home we just sold started holding some of our most beloved books, then we switched to our family Bible, a picture of five generations of family with my husband as an infant, and a small shadowbox from my Pap's funeral. We made it reflect our personality and values, since it draws so much attention naturally.The floors and banister are beautiful – such a refreshing and modern update!

  13. Lindsay Bononno
    May 2, 2017 / 2:23 pm

    It looks beautiful! I love the slightly darker floors and the contrast of the banister! Maybe find a way to incorporate a family photo into the niche?https://hotmesscoolday.wordpress.com

  14. Jessi @ Jessi's Design
    May 2, 2017 / 2:27 pm

    W-o-W! What a difference! Ob-sessed! xo

  15. Kate
    May 2, 2017 / 2:41 pm

    Wow! Love the updates. It looks amazing. Congrats on your new home. Oh! We had a cubby like that and it sat empty for a year before I went to zgallerie with pictures and measurements and they set me up with a large flat vase full of magnolia blooms! I had joked I wanted to drywall it in because it was stressing me out so much when it was empty!

  16. Rachel Pursley
    May 2, 2017 / 2:53 pm

    Looks amazing!! It's incredible how much just changing a color (via paint or floor stain) drastically changes a house! It looks like a new build now! Also, my friend always keeps some flowers and a bowl of candy in her alcove. Now with toddlers, that might not work as well, ha! But it's super nice when she has guests over. Everyone knows that the candy bowl is a free for all! Can't wait to see the rest of the house transformations!

  17. Kiki Nakita
    May 2, 2017 / 3:06 pm

    Looks beautiful!

  18. Kate
    May 2, 2017 / 3:07 pm

    I'd want to change that wall niche for holidays, but that would probably end up being much work. A large vase or some candles/frames and a large mirror could look nice!

  19. Lauren Honeycutt
    May 2, 2017 / 3:19 pm

    The house is looking AMAZING!

  20. Just Jess
    May 2, 2017 / 3:52 pm

    I love it! The darker floors with the clean paint are gorgeous. Jess at Just Jess

  21. Hanging with the Hirsts
    May 2, 2017 / 4:01 pm

    It looks SO amazing!! I'm loving following along on your new house journey 🙂

  22. April of Smidge Of This
    May 2, 2017 / 4:21 pm

    Friend it is AMAZING. What a transformation! That nook … it would look so great with an arrangement inside. But definitely something low-fuss. For a live arrangement, how about an orchid — it would get perfect indirect light from the windows on the side and above your front door. Or, a cool vase filled with an arrangement of cotton bolls!

  23. Chelsey S
    May 2, 2017 / 4:38 pm

    Looks so beautiful!!!! And I definitely never knew that eBay has coupons! Total game changer for our kitchen remodel! ?Thesmalltownrose.blogspot.com

  24. Lindsay at Lindsay'sSweetWorld
    May 2, 2017 / 5:08 pm

    Thank yourself for not going extra dark on the floors!!!! We did that when we built our house seven years ago and I want to kick myself every day for doing it. They look dirty all. the. time. I can sweep and mop and literally 30 minutes later they look dirty again. It's so annoying!! And now that we have two little nuggets, well, I just gave up cleaning them altogether. Haha.

  25. Abbi Hearne
    May 2, 2017 / 6:38 pm

    This looks so good!!! I can't wait to see the final reveal!

  26. Laura Darling
    May 2, 2017 / 8:55 pm

    Oh my gosh it looks AMAZING! Such a huge difference! The floors are gorgeous.

  27. Caley-Jade Rosenberg
    May 3, 2017 / 6:21 am

    Amazing!!! it looks gorgeous – love how its all come together x

  28. Alex K
    May 3, 2017 / 5:29 pm

    Is no one going to mention the awesome link to those lowes coupons!?!?!?! Thank you for that!!!! Of course, the makeover is fab!

  29. lauren alford design
    May 3, 2017 / 6:27 pm

    WOW! looks amazing, beautiful updates!

  30. Brittany
    May 3, 2017 / 7:13 pm

    I am LOVING the house posts! Please keep them coming! Would also love to see more about the moving process, everything from packing tips to how you managed the renovations plus the move in with kids. Your house is so beautiful! I'm sure you're thrilled with how it's coming together.

  31. Corie @ Life in the Mitten
    May 4, 2017 / 1:53 am

    What a transformation! It looks great!

  32. rox
    May 4, 2017 / 5:54 pm

    This is GORGEOUS!!!!!! We have the same registers, and our floor color looks super similar, too! EEEEK! So exciting!

  33. Jessica | Being Bradfords
    May 5, 2017 / 12:19 am

    Wow! Great stain choice and I love the paint color for the bannister!

  34. vanilj3
    May 5, 2017 / 7:53 pm

    Wow, this is absolutely gorgeous! Well done!xx Rapunzelwww.rapunzelthepsychologist.com

  35. DetroitDuchess
    May 8, 2017 / 3:24 am

    Wow! Beautiful! I can't wait to see how you decorate that staircase for the holidays, so many options!

  36. Julie @ Just the Joy's
    May 8, 2017 / 11:14 am

    I love transformations! Gorgeous!

  37. Catie
    February 15, 2018 / 5:03 pm

    if your budget will allow you to spend a lot of money then there is nothing stopping you

  38. Anonymous
    February 26, 2018 / 11:12 am

    Your new home looks terrific and I also like the rooster wallpaper. Everything look so good and you need your things from your sold house – it makes it more like home. Garage Door Repair & Installation Services In Long Beach

  39. Debbie
    March 4, 2018 / 10:17 am

    Would love to know if your floors are red oak or white oak as I love the color combination but I have red oak and not sure it would come out looking the same if yours is white oak. Thanks.

  40. Leah
    July 18, 2018 / 10:37 am

    Over a year later, do you still like the floor color? I have to make the decision soon for our new house!

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