Stain Color Question - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 12-20-2008, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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Stain Color Question

As part of a renovation, just about ready to finish installing some new red oak stairs. All red oak see pic below. Have already installed red oak floors stained English Chestnut color with a Semi Gloss Poly on them. Also getting ready to replace and upgrade all the trim in the house. All the wall paper will be removed and the whole inside of the house will get a new coat of paint. Again more pics below.
I have been looking at many houses and noticed that in very expensive top of the line homes they paint the floor trim, door trim, and window trim white. It seems to make things pop more because it gives separation between the two colors. I do not want to paint all the trim white, I like the stained look a lot better, but want that separation and pop. My question is this, "Is it possible to stain all the trim, skirt boards, and risers a darker color than the floors and the treads. Kind of a reverse type thing. Then paint the walls a lighter color than both of them. Any suggestions, opinions, places where I could see this already done.
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post #2 of 3 Old 12-21-2008, 06:52 AM
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You could do any combination of colors that pleases you. What you describe done in "high end" homes is likely done in taste and coordinated closely with the color scheme used. Whatever differentials are used, was likely approved as a color palette.

Dark risers may show more scuffing than lighter ones. What I suggest is that the "popping" you want to create may appear too "happy", or overdone, which may draw attention to specific areas. Some of those differentials in colors and shades are done to minimize certain areas, or create a visual felling of expanse.

You might make up samples and place them in the desired areas to see what they look like. When designers and architects do "renderings", they draw the rooms with all the colors in place to get the overall effect.

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post #3 of 3 Old 12-21-2008, 11:50 AM
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Like Cabman said, you can do what you want, it's your home. I don't think however I would stain the stairs two different shades. Most people would think you screwed something up. When I was building homes, we did a number of different finishes, depending on what the customer wanted. A home with painted base, casing, crown, has a somewhat more formal look and does have a tendency to bring out the wall colors more. If you were to trim out a house in all oak and stain it, it has more of an early american or country feel. For a more formal look on the stairs, paint the skirts and risers white, stain the treads. If you have a spindle railing to go along with it, stain the rail and base of the rail, paint the spindles.
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