Everything I Learned About Stair Carpet Runners And What We Ended Up Installing (Including What It Cost)

This course of may very well be a 500-page e book. Probably the most boring e book ever, however for design nerds like me I’d learn it. I’ve by no means carried out a stair runner earlier than and realized SO MUCH, nevertheless it was a reasonably arduous course of as we went by means of so many choices to be instructed “no” again and again and over. Right here’s the way it went down.

We pulled up the carpet, discovered that the wooden flooring was completely tremendous (traditional 2″ fir), and determined to color as a substitute of changing them. Nice. We at all times supposed on a stair runner for consolation, slippage, and noise discount. Must be straightforward, proper? Probably not. It was way more difficult than it appears to be like. You see, our stairs are two totally different widths – on the backside they’re 70.5″ huge, then it turns and it narrows to 47″ huge. I had wished to purchase readymade runners and set up them, however with the totally different widths, it grew to become very difficult.

Thought #1: Runners + Then Wider Rugs In A Fairly Woven


I wasn’t essentially phased by this measurement distinction factor (that a lot). I figured I’d purchase three runners for the size and a bigger rug for the touchdown and the primary three wider steps. I’d have the bigger rug minimize down and certain. I spotted I’d need to have at the very least 9′ of size and the rug I wished didn’t are available a 6’x9′ so I figured I’d order an 8’x10′ and minimize it right down to 4’x10′. I used to be going to run it straight in opposition to the steps on the touchdown and cease it the place the runner would begin going up the second run of stairs (does that make any sense??). Nice. I ordered the rugs after which referred to as round to get them minimize and certain. As quickly as I began calling I bought pushback concerning the rug that I had chosen, saying that it’s what “decorators love to do” however no installer will do it as a result of it received’t final as a stair runner. I used to be admittedly irritated on the mansplaining however I additionally have a tendency to love to take knowledgeable recommendation. I despatched photographs/video of the rug so they might see the weave and so they mentioned that it was simply means too free, that it could give means an excessive amount of when individuals step down with ahead power and that this might make the stripes wonky. These appeared like honest factors. They, in fact, wished us to go the industrial route which I’m not against however I wasn’t impressed by. I wished fairly rugs!

Thought #2: Runner + Rug Combo In A Hand-Knotted Rug (Not Woven)


Nonetheless hoping to work with Rejuvenation I assumed perhaps one among their extra certain and hand-knotted Persian-style rugs would work. I had one available from the pantry reveal and checked out them on the steps. It was fairly, however since they didn’t promote 3’x5’s or 4’x6’s we’d once more have to chop down a a lot bigger rug. Additionally, these patterns could be a lot tougher to chop and paste, what with the border and the sector sample.

Thought #3: Enkay, A Strong With So A lot Texture


Across the similar time, Enkay despatched our household room rug which was so gorgeous that I assumed perhaps we use them on the steps. They offered runners that will work (or so I assumed) however once more we’d have to chop down a bigger rug to suit the bigger touchdown. I put the pattern on the steps and it was simply so lovely – calm, with a lot coloration variation, and tender. However once more, as quickly as we began calling round we bumped into the identical problem (it’s too free). ALSO, the binding wouldn’t match as they self-bind (with the identical yarn because the rug). We may rebind all of them (runner included) to make the binding match however man, this was getting difficult.

Thought #4: Classic Persian Rugs

Whereas we didn’t need this rug to be loud or tremendous patterned, in fact, I like classic/vintage Persian rugs. Okay, I thought of amassing classic Persian carpets and mixing them. I didn’t discover this for lengthy sufficient TBH as a result of looking for 5 that regarded good collectively (three runners and two rugs for the touchdown) felt nearly unattainable, or else I’d find yourself spending $15k. I’m VERY choosy about my classic/vintage rugs and like them in cooler-toned colorways. We additionally didn’t need it to seem like a carpet showroom and if this wasn’t completely carried out, it could. One other problem is that classic runners aren’t all the identical width – they’re normally off by just a few inches. Some rugs could be minimize off at bizarre factors, slicing the sector sample with out the border, and so on. This might all completely be tremendous nevertheless it felt prefer it was going to take months or years to gather the proper ones, tens of hundreds do get those that I would like, then troubleshoot the set up – the danger of it not trying good could be excessive. If I had an limitless funds and time that is doubtless what I might have carried out, however to do what I wished would have taken an excessive amount of cash and an excessive amount of time. I may have purchased a bunch and had them shaved and dyed to match, however once more would it not have been value it? Thought, nixed.

Thought #5: Sure Wall-To-Wall Carpet – I.E. Business/Residential Grade

We lastly began giving up on utilizing a fairly rug and went to a carpet place on the town. I used to be legit impressed with a number of the choices and we introduced again samples. I didn’t love them as a lot as any of the opposite choices above, however the carpet itself was tremendous. A salesman got here to the home to measure and we bumped up in opposition to the difficulty of the place to cease the carpet on the touchdown. I assumed that the decrease carpet would primarily meet the underside stair on the touchdown – with NO Hole. The very skilled salesman mentioned that this isn’t one thing he has ever carried out and suggested in opposition to it – “It’s simply not the way it’s carried out”. Y’all I like listening to consultants, individuals who have carried out one factor again and again for 20 years. Whereas we’d not typically share the identical model, their experience is so legitimate. At that assembly, we lastly determined to get a quote on a lightweight blue, certain possibility and have the carpet make the flip to go up the steps. Fantastic.

The quote got here in round $5k and never solely did I really feel like that was lots, however extra importantly, I simply wasn’t enthusiastic about it. I regarded for HOURS on the web for stair runners that I preferred and virtually none of them that I beloved have been certain wall-to-wall carpet – or at the very least didn’t seem like it. It didn’t have to be an enormous assertion however I didn’t need it to seem like a industrial house. I talked to Brian about it and he supported me and mentioned, “Simply do no matter you wish to do, no matter will probably be prettiest and make you cheerful”. Now, I don’t wish to do one thing that may have to be changed in 5 years, however I really feel like we may nonetheless select a fairly rug that will final 10 years (which is an honest time for carpet, no?).

I reached out to my contact at Annie Selke and despatched them choices, asking what they assume would have essentially the most longevity for stair runners. She despatched me again these two choices.

Malta Navy Handwoven Wool Rug | Denim Plaid Handwoven Cotton Rug

Thought #5: The Winner!!! Tight Weave Runner + Sure Rug

These felt sturdy and whenever you tried to stretch them they have been stiff. Any of them may have labored however we ended up going with this one. We partnered with Annie Selke and ordered three 2.5’x8′ runners and two 3’x5′ rugs. We finally determined that the touchdown stairs solely wanted to be 6″ wider than the extra slim stairs. So subsequently two 3×5 rugs would do it. Had we paid full worth for this the rugs themselves could be $1,058. Preserve that in thoughts as we add up the labor…

Time to Bind

After being instructed “no” and “unattainable” just a few instances about binding our rugs collectively, Gretchen discovered a man who not solely would do it however documented the entire thing! He needed to match the sample and ideally make it look seamless. WAHOO!!! This price $180 and was carried out in just a few days by the nice of us at Ray-Burt’s. He additionally instructed and minimize our carpet pad to go beneath it which price one other $165. So at this level, we have now spent $345.

Prepared To Set up

I lastly discovered a crew of installers that will do that carpet (they’d beforehand mentioned no to the woven one). They felt that it was tight and sturdy sufficient. They needed to troubleshoot a bit (we ran out on the high, thus the hole that doesn’t trouble me) however they have been such execs and made it look good. They laid out the carpet pad (solely on the treads, not taking it up the risers) and commenced expertly stapling them down. They matched the stripe sample on the longer run of stairs. WAHOO. The set up took 4 hours and value $600.

Stair Rod

Then they added the stair rods, with the lovable little finials (that don’t actually have a perform, however look so fairly and ornamental and assist it from trying like certain carpet). We realized that we have been lacking two 36″ ones that are actually on order from Rejuvenation. We selected the black to be much less blingy (Rejuvenation has all totally different metallic finishes) however brass may very well be so fairly, too.

The Reveal

We love the way it turned out and I’m SO MUCH HAPPIER than if we had carried out a industrial carpet. We determined to take the certain 3’x5’s (so the three’x10′ runner) and simply have it go straight again, with a niche on the touchdown earlier than the riser. We very very like how this appears to be like, regardless of it not being the “norm”. I believe it simply appears to be like extra like they’re rugs on stairs as a substitute of business carpet if that is smart and is extra the look we have been going for. Whereas we wish to take heed to consultants they’re additionally typically caught in doing issues the way in which they at all times have and I personally assume rethinking views can get you one thing extra fascinating.

I wish to additionally acknowledge that this course of took a lot of my time (and my crew’s time) – had I been charging myself (or in case you have a designer) know that doing these troubleshooting moments in an effort to do “one thing fascinating” can price within the hundreds in time. So I totally get how and why a contractor or designer would convey of their carpet man with their samples and get it carried out in a single appointment. I’m glad we went this manner and I assumed that it could be useful for these at house trying to do one thing comparable, nevertheless it actually took lots of time to troubleshoot which lots of people don’t have.


When strolling on the steps it feels extraordinarily strong, i.e. not slippery in any respect. That is most likely because of the staples and non-slip carpet pad, but when I needed to guess I’d say that this might final for a lot of a few years. Additionally, it’s darkish and tremendous forgiving. This carpet itself is wool so it’s not this loopy tender texture however we knew that going into it and it’s nonetheless very tender. Whereas we don’t enable footwear in the home we additionally know that at instances children will overlook, so I like that is the primary line of protection earlier than they get to the touchdown (which could have a painted gentle sample) and their gentle carpet of their bed room (which does scare me TBH).

How A lot Did It Price?

Okay so the rugs would have been $1,058, the binding was $180, the carpet pad was $165, and the set up was $600. So in complete, it could be about $2k. Far lower than the $5k quote for a product that I simply wasn’t enthusiastic about. If I have been to do that once more, I might skip all these troubleshooting concepts and go for a really tight weave or hand-knotted rug + runner combo, have them certain (if mandatory – the hole may hit at a riser and work, however ours was going to hit on the touchdown so we needed to go certain), and name a smaller mother/pop set up firm that isn’t making an attempt to make their cash off of the sale of the industrial carpet. Now our touchdown was bizarre, however most of you most likely have stairs which might be all the identical width, subsequently, decreasing this troubleshooting SO MUCH. I additionally wish to make clear that nothing is unsuitable with commercial-grade certain carpet, however the place I don’t like it a lot are the “turns” of the steps that may find yourself trying actually company (IMHO) as a result of they observe it virtually too completely. I just like the simplicity of it simply trying like a rug on a stair, not an enormous overly designed set up if that makes any sense.

Thanks for coming to my one-woman present on stair runners. Please in case you have different perception for different individuals depart it within the feedback. I’ve solely carried out this as soon as so have info solely based mostly on my private expertise in Portland. xx


Rug: Annie Selke
Stair Colour: Smoky Blue by Sherwin-Williams
Wallpaper: Scandinavian Wallpaper
Wall and Trim Colour: Further White by Sherwin-William
Image Mild: Rejuvenation
All {Hardware}: Rejuvenation
Wooden Flooring: Oregon White Oak by Zena Flooring

*Pictures by Kaitlin Inexperienced

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