Stairwell Makeover: ORC Week 4

We survived the weekend!! Hallelujah! I can’t begin to thank my parents for hosting us and my husband being so flexible and putting his life on hold for a couple of days while I knocked out the staining and sealing of the stairwell.

If you are just joining me I’m giving my Stairwell a Makeover. I’ve ripped up the carpet here, sanded the steps here and now I’ve stained and sealed the floors.

I was dreading this part of the reno. I’ve never stained such a large surface before so I was rather nervous. I consulted my father who is a pro at all things construction. I always feel better after talking with him, he breaks it down for me and answers all my absurd questions and frantic phone calls.

After the floor was sanded and cleaned of all dust I began staining. Because my space wasn’t super enormous I just used a 4 inch brush to brush on the stain and wiped away any excess stain with a clean white t-shirt that I stole from my husband’s drawer, shhhhh! It took me about an hour to apply all the stain, mainly because there were so many corners due the fact I’m staining stairs.






I think the stain turned out beautifully! The color could not match the first floor better, which is especially nice considering I didn’t want to mix a custom stain, I’ve done it before for projects and it’s a long process, unless you get lucky. I ended up using Rustoleum Ultimate Wood Stain in American WalnutRustoleum Wood Stain American Walnut

For the polyurethane I went the route of water based as opposed to oil based and use Rustoleum Ultimate Polyurethane. It is supposed to dry in less time and clean up is a breeze with water. And it lived up to all the hype.


The recoat time was 2 hours and I was able to do just that. The stain was another story. It claimed to dry in 1 hour, however the day I stained it was raining outside and the humidity in the air wasn’t helping me out at all. It ended up taking 6 hours before I could add the Polyurethane.

After the first coat of Polyurethane I filled 14 billion tiny holes from where the carpet had been tacked down. This is just a time suck. There is no quick way to do it. I’ve tried in the past filling with a sand-able and stainable filler but I don’t much care for the look. I much prefer the wax pencils from Minwax.

Wk 4 Filling-Holes-FancyFreeMe

After the holes were filled and my fingers were brittle I applied 2 more coats of Polyurethane. And let me just tell you my steps are looking mighty fine!



Up next is painting! I’m doing the risers and all the trim on the second floor in the hall.



I also have plans for stripping the banister and painting the balusters white. It’s going to be awesome. I mean seriously, look at those steps, it can only get better.

Thanks for visiting! Come back next week to see what kind of progress I’m making. I’m so excited to paint the risers! You can hop over to Calling it Home to see who else is linking up in the One Room Challenge here.

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