Thursday, May 22, 2008

My stairs

I found out a valuable lesson today: whine a little, come up with a creative solution, and you will get your way. Well, maybe not all the time, but it sure worked this time!

The problem was the space we had left for a stairway. It was small enough that, to build a conventional, boxy stairway, we would have had to construct a landing and do a 180 degree U turn that would have taken up a lot of space. The other option was to move our bedroom doorway over a foot or so. I disapproved. I whined a little. And I put something else on the table.

I had started thinking, a while back, about a stairway based on this one I found at the blog Lichenology. I liked its conservation of space, and just the aesthetic pleasure of working a curve into a square corner. When we got into the hard realities of rise vs. run, I pointed out that the corner space could be used to create vertical drop instead of just a level turning point. I didn't know if our carpenter would approve.

He did, and I most definitely approve!

This really ties the room together. (yeah, another Big Lebowski quote.)

In exchange, I only had to agree to The Hermit's choice of exterior stain color. Actually, I think he made the best choice.


MojoMan said...

Pretty elegant solution! They're called "winders" and are not uncommon here in the the East, mostly in older, smaller homes and in basements with tight clearances. I don't see them much in newer homes, I guess because those houses are bigger and have room for straight stairways or landings. I wouldn't be surprised if they are one of those things young carpenters don't learn how to do anymore.

Lynne said...

Very, very nice Deb! It shows your creative thinking.

Kathie said...

Love those stairs!

Floridacracker said...

Those stairs are great... so are the stair munchkins.

While there's still time ... you might think about built in storage for under the stairs, but you probably already have.

jan m said...

your house is really coming together - how exciting for all of you!

Deb said...

MojoMan- I guess our carpenter had heard of them, but most textbooks on carpentry just don't explain them well enough (he taught high school shop for a number of years). But we had a book, The Independent Builder, published by RealGoods, that had good diagrams of how to do winders. I would recommend that book to anyone thinking of building their own house. It has been incredibly helpful.

Lynne- Thanks! I like that I was able to "think outside the box" on that one.

Kathie- Thanks!

FC- The stair munchkins are showing way too many signs of maturing. But I love Starflower's smile in that photo.

I had hoped we could have a little computer nook underneath the stairs, but I guess it has to be walled in for some reason, so I'm going for a closet of some sort. I'm sure it will be that.

Jan M- Thanks. The Hermit and I just sit in lawn chairs inside our future family room when I come home from work lately, admiring all that's been done and looking towards the future.

pablo said...

I'm glad you puzzled out a solution, but I have to tell you that this is exactly the point in staircases where I have the most trouble coming down. I guess my mental map is just not accustomed to it.

Deb said...

Well Pablo, when you come to the housewarming party I'll have warning signs taped to the stairs.