Parts of a Staircase: Understanding the Components for Your Home

Learn about the different parts of a staircase, essential to understanding the components that make up this important element in your home. By familiarizing yourself with each part, you’ll be better equipped to make informed decisions when planning a staircase remodel or construction project.

In this comprehensive guide, we cover various staircase components, such as treads, risers, handrails, balusters, newel posts, and more. Discover the function and significance of each part, and how they come together to create a safe, functional, and aesthetically pleasing staircase.

By understanding the parts of a staircase, you can make well-informed choices when selecting materials and designs, ensuring your staircase is not only visually appealing but also meets safety and building code requirements. Explore the world of staircase components and elevate your home design with the perfect staircase.


Parts of a Staircase

Parts of a Staircase


What is a handrail bracket?

A handrail bracket is an essential component in staircase design, serving as the connecting point between the handrail and the wall or another supporting surface. Its primary function is to securely attach the handrail, ensuring it remains stable and sturdy for those using the stairs. This piece of hardware is not only functional but also contributes to the overall aesthetic of the staircase.

Composition and Functionality of a Handrail Bracket:

  1. Main Bracket with Mounting Plate: The core of a handrail bracket is the main bracket, which includes a mounting plate. This plate is typically affixed to the wall or the supporting surface using screws or bolts, providing a stable base for the handrail.
  2. Bracket for Handrail Attachment: Attached to the main bracket is a smaller bracket or an arm that connects to the handrail. This part of the bracket ensures that the handrail is securely mounted and aligned with the wall or supporting surface.

Variety and Customization:

  • Styles and Finishes: Handrail brackets come in a wide range of styles and finishes, allowing them to complement various types of handrails and staircase designs. Whether your staircase has a contemporary, traditional, or modern design, there is a handrail bracket style to suit it.
  • Material Construction: These brackets are commonly made from durable metals like steel or aluminum, ensuring longevity and strength. The choice of material also impacts the bracket’s appearance and its ability to complement different handrail materials and finishes.
  • Size Options: Understanding that handrails come in various thicknesses, handrail brackets are available in different sizes. This versatility ensures a proper fit for different handrail profiles, contributing to the safety and stability of the handrail.

Importance in Staircase Remodels:

  • Support and Safety: Handrail brackets play a crucial role in providing additional support and safety to the handrail, an important aspect, especially in staircase remodels or updates.
  • Aesthetic Contribution: While often overlooked, the style and finish of a handrail bracket can significantly impact the overall look of the staircase, adding subtle but noticeable detail.

In summary, a handrail bracket is a vital, multifunctional element in staircase construction and design. It not only ensures the structural integrity and safety of the handrail but also contributes to the aesthetic appeal of the staircase. At our company, we offer a diverse selection of handrail brackets, catering to various design preferences and functional requirements, ensuring that your staircase is both safe and stylish.

Shop our handrail brackets here.

What is an iron newel install kit?

An iron newel install kit is a comprehensive package designed to facilitate the secure installation of iron newel posts in a staircase. Newel posts are critical structural elements in a stair railing system, often placed at the beginning, end, or at turns in the staircase, providing essential support to the handrail. These kits are tailored specifically for iron newel posts, ensuring a reliable and visually appealing installation.

Components of an Iron Newel Install Kit:

  1. Mounting Bracket: This is the foundational component of the kit. The bracket is designed to robustly anchor the iron newel post to the floor or stair tread, providing the primary support.
  2. Bolts and Set Screws: The kit includes bolts and set screws, which are used to secure the newel post to the mounting bracket firmly. These ensure a stable and enduring connection, essential for the safety and longevity of the staircase.
  3. Shoe: A decorative element, the shoe is designed to cover the mounting base of the newel post. This not only enhances the post’s appearance by concealing the installation hardware but also provides a clean, finished look to the base of the post.
  4. Epoxy: For an even stronger bond, especially in high-stress areas or for heavier posts, the kit may include epoxy. When used, the epoxy adds an extra layer of adhesion, reinforcing the stability of the installed newel post.

Benefits of Using an Iron Newel Install Kit:

  • All-in-One Solution: The kit provides all the necessary components for installation, eliminating the need for additional hardware purchases.
  • Designed for Compatibility: These kits are specifically designed for iron newel posts, ensuring that the components are perfectly suited for the material and weight of the posts.
  • Ease of Installation: With the inclusion of all required parts and clear instructions, these kits make the installation process more straightforward, even for those with limited experience in stair construction.
  • Aesthetically Pleasing Finish: The inclusion of a shoe and the potential for a neat epoxy finish ensure that the installed newel post not only is structurally sound but also enhances the staircase’s overall aesthetic.

Our iron newel install kits are designed with both functionality and aesthetics in mind. They provide a secure, reliable solution for installing iron newel posts, ensuring that your staircase is both safe and visually appealing. Whether you are a professional installer or a homeowner engaging in a DIY project, these kits offer a practical and efficient way to achieve a successful installation.

Browse our iron newel install kits here.

See our official installation guide here.

What are RetroFit Tread kits?

RetroFit Stair Tread Kits are specifically engineered for stair remodeling projects, providing an efficient and effective way to transition from carpeted stairs to hardwood treads. These kits are an excellent choice for those looking to update their staircase with the elegance and durability of hardwood, while ensuring compliance with building codes regarding stair rise and run.

Composition and Features of RetroFit Stair Tread Kits:

  1. Hardwood Treads: The kits include high-quality treads made from either Red Oak or White Oak. These hardwood options offer both durability and a classic aesthetic appeal, enhancing the overall look of your staircase.
  2. Ease of Installation: Each kit comes with moulding or trim pre-attached to the treads, streamlining the installation process. This feature is especially beneficial for DIY enthusiasts or professionals looking for a quick and efficient remodel solution.
  3. Riser with Dual-Sided Design: A unique feature of these kits is the inclusion of a riser with a dual-sided design. One side is prepared for staining (stain grade), while the other is suitable for painting (paint grade). This versatility allows homeowners to customize their staircase to match their specific design preferences and interior decor.
  4. Removing Old Treads: Unlike solutions that fit over existing treads, RetroFit Stair Tread Kits require the removal of the old treads and carpet. This approach ensures that the new hardwood treads fit correctly and maintain the staircase’s proper rise and run dimensions, keeping it within building code standards.

Benefits of RetroFit Stair Tread Kits:

  • Aesthetic Upgrade: Transitioning from carpeted to hardwood stairs significantly enhances the visual appeal of your home, adding a touch of elegance and sophistication.
  • Compliance with Codes: By sizing the treads to accommodate the existing staircase structure, these kits ensure that the renovated stairs comply with safety and building codes.
  • Customization Options: The ability to choose between staining or painting the risers, as well as selecting from different types of wood, offers considerable customization to align with any home style.

Our RetroFit Stair Tread Kits are designed to simplify and streamline the renovation process, making it easier than ever to achieve a refreshed and modern look for your staircase. Whether you are a professional contractor or a homeowner embarking on a DIY project, these kits provide a practical and stylish solution for upgrading your staircase.

Shop our 11.5″ RetroFit Tread Kits here.

Shop our 10.5″ RetroFit Tread Kits here.

What are the types of staircase trim and moulding?

Staircase trim and moulding are key elements that add decorative flair and a finished look to your staircase. These details can significantly enhance the aesthetic appeal of a stairway, complementing its design and the overall interior style of your home. There are several types of staircase trim and moulding, each serving a specific purpose and offering a unique visual effect.

1. Baseboard Trim: This type of trim runs along the bottom of the wall adjacent to the staircase. It provides a clean, finished transition between the wall and the floor or stair treads. Baseboard trim can range from simple designs to more ornate profiles, depending on the desired aesthetic.

2. Handrail Moulding: Handrail moulding is applied to the handrail and is a critical aspect of the stair’s appearance and safety. It can vary in shape and size, with designs ranging from sleek and modern to more detailed and traditional.

3. Tread Brackets: These decorative elements are attached to the exposed side of each stair tread, right beneath the nosing. Tread brackets often feature ornate carvings or patterns, adding an elegant touch to the staircase.

4. Skirt Boards: Skirt boards run along the wall on the open side of the staircase, framing the treads and risers. They provide a polished look by covering the gap between the stairs and the wall.

5. Rosettes and Finials: Rosettes are decorative accents typically placed at the end of handrails or at key transition points in the railing. Finials are decorative caps placed on top of newel posts, adding a finishing touch to the staircase.

6. Shoe Moulding: Shoe moulding is a small, curved trim piece that sits at the bottom of the baseboards. It covers the seam where the baseboard and floor meet, providing a smooth and finished appearance.

7. Panel Moulding: This type of moulding is used to create decorative panels along the staircase wall or on the stair risers, adding depth and character to the staircase area.

8. Crown Moulding: While not directly part of the staircase, crown moulding in the stairwell can enhance the overall look. It is installed between the wall and the ceiling, providing a graceful transition and a touch of elegance.

Our company offers a wide variety of staircase trim and moulding options to suit different styles and preferences. Whether you’re aiming for a subtle enhancement or a dramatic transformation, these elements are crucial in creating a cohesive and beautiful stairway design. We ensure that our products are of high quality, adding both charm and value to your home.

Shop our trim & moulding here.


Types of staircase trim and moulding example image

Types of staircase trim and moulding example image

What is a wood newel post installation kit?

A wood newel post installation kit is a comprehensive set of tools and materials designed to facilitate the installation of a wood newel post in a staircase. Newel posts are the larger, often more decorative posts found at the beginning, end, or at turns in a staircase, providing structural support to the handrail system. These kits are essential for ensuring a secure and proper installation of the newel post.

Key Components of a Wood Newel Post Installation Kit:

  1. Mounting Hardware: The kit typically includes all necessary hardware for mounting the newel post, such as bolts, screws, and nuts. This hardware is designed to firmly anchor the newel post to the floor, stair treads, or the staircase framing.
  2. Alignment Tools: Tools or aids for ensuring the newel post is perfectly vertical and aligned with the rest of the stair components might also be included. Proper alignment is crucial for both the aesthetics and safety of the staircase.
  3. Installation Instructions: Comprehensive instructions guide you through the installation process. These instructions are especially useful for DIY enthusiasts or those new to stair installation.

Benefits of Using an Installation Kit:

  • Convenience: The kit provides all necessary components in one package, eliminating the need to source individual parts.
  • Compatibility: Kits are often designed to be compatible with specific types or styles of newel posts, ensuring a seamless fit and installation.
  • Quality Assurance: Using a kit designed for wood newel post installation ensures that the components are of appropriate quality and strength for the task.

Our Wood Newel Post Installation Kits:

  • At our company, we offer high-quality installation kits that are tailored for the specific newel posts we provide. This ensures that when you purchase a newel post from us, you have the option to get a perfectly matched installation kit, making the installation process as straightforward and reliable as possible.

A wood newel post installation kit is a valuable resource for both professional installers and DIY homeowners. It simplifies the installation process, ensures stability and safety, and helps maintain the aesthetic integrity of the staircase. With our carefully curated kits, you can confidently install your wood newel post, knowing it will be a secure and visually appealing addition to your staircase.

Shop our wood newel installation kits here.

View our official installation guide here.

What kind of glue or epoxy do I use for stair remodeling?

When embarking on a stair remodeling project, choosing the right adhesive is crucial for a successful and lasting result. At our store, we understand this need and offer a comprehensive selection of Glue & Epoxy Adhesives tailored for various stair renovation needs.

Our Epoxy Solutions for Stair Remodeling:

  1. Non-Drip, Clear-Drying Epoxy Tubes: Ideal for iron baluster installations, our epoxy tubes ensure a clean and efficient application. They are non-drip and dry clear, preventing any unsightly residue or mess.
  2. Efficient Usage: A single tube of our epoxy can secure up to 20 balusters, with just a dime-sized drop at the top and bottom. This efficiency makes our product both cost-effective and convenient.
  3. Single-Use Epoxy Can: Designed for iron newel post installation, these cans are perfect for a one-time project, ensuring you have the right amount without any waste.

For Wooden Stair Parts – TiteBond Wood Glue:

  • Industry Standard: Our TiteBond wood glue is the industry standard for all wood installations. Its strong bond ensures that your wooden stair parts are securely fastened, providing durability and reliability.

Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or a professional contractor, our selection of adhesives is designed to make your stair remodeling project easier, more efficient, and cost-effective. We pride ourselves on providing products that are not only reliable but also enhance your work’s quality and longevity. Trust us to be your partner in creating beautiful, sturdy staircases that stand the test of time.

Shop our epoxy and adhesives here.

What is an iron panel?

An iron panel is a decorative element that can significantly enhance the aesthetic appeal of your stairs or balcony. Our Rebecca Iron Panels exemplify this, offering an ideal solution for those seeking to infuse elegance and sophistication into their home décor.

Understanding Rebecca Iron Panels:

  1. High-Quality Material: Each panel is crafted from superior materials, ensuring durability and a lasting visual impact.
  2. Versatility in Design: Our collection boasts a variety of styles, enabling you to find the perfect match for your home’s interior design theme.
  3. Application Flexibility: Whether you aim to create a stunning focal point in your stair or balcony railing or prefer a fully custom-fabricated system, Rebecca Iron Panels are versatile enough to meet your needs.

Customization Options and Lead Times:

  • Raw Metal Variation: For those who prefer the raw, unadorned beauty of metal, we offer Rebecca Iron Panels with a lead time of up to 2 weeks, plus shipping.
  • Powder Coated or Faux Finished Panels: For a more tailored appearance, our powder-coated or faux-finished panels are available, with a lead time of up to 4 weeks plus shipping. These finishes add an extra layer of personalization and durability to the panels.

Our Rebecca Iron Panels are more than just accessories; they are a statement of style and quality. We encourage you to contact us for more detailed information, and we’re here to assist you in making the best choice for your home. Let our expertise guide you in adding a touch of timeless elegance to your stairs or balcony with our exquisite Rebecca Iron Panels.

Shop our Rebecca iron Panels here.

What is a wood baluster?

A wood baluster is a vertical post that forms part of a staircase’s handrail system, functioning as a crucial structural and decorative element. These balusters are typically lined up in a row, extending from the stair’s treads up to the handrail, providing support and stability to the handrail while also contributing to the overall aesthetic of the staircase.

Key Characteristics of Wood Balusters:

  1. Material: As the name suggests, these balusters are made of wood, which offers a classic and warm aesthetic. The natural wood grain adds a touch of elegance and can be customized through staining or painting to match your home’s interior design.
  2. Design Variations: Wood balusters come in various designs, ranging from simple and sleek modern styles to more intricate and ornate traditional patterns. This diversity allows homeowners to choose balusters that best fit their home’s architectural style and personal taste.
  3. Alternate Names: Wood balusters are also commonly referred to as wood spindles or wood pickets. Despite the different terminology, these terms all refer to the same staircase component.

Our Offerings and Customization Options:

  • At our company, we pride ourselves on providing a wide selection of high-quality wood balusters. Our balusters are meticulously crafted to be free of knots and defects, ensuring a smooth, premium finish ready for custom staining or painting.
  • We cater to various preferences, offering both modern and traditional designs. While many of our designs are readily available in stock for immediate needs, we also specialize in custom-made balusters. These are crafted by skilled Amish artisans per order, offering a unique, personalized touch to your staircase.

Investing in our wood balusters means choosing durability, safety, and aesthetic appeal. They comply with all building code standards, guaranteeing not just a visually impressive staircase but also a safe and reliable one. With our diverse range and customization options, you can find the perfect wood balusters to enhance the beauty and functionality of your staircase.

Shop our wood balusters here.

What is a stabilizer newel post?

A stabilizer newel post, an integral component in staircase design, plays a vital role in both the structural integrity and aesthetic appeal of a stairway. It’s a specialized type of newel post designed primarily for added stability and support in certain stair configurations.

Key Characteristics of a Stabilizer Newel Post:

  1. Structural Support: The primary function of a stabilizer newel post is to provide additional support and stability to the handrail system, especially in longer or more complex staircases where extra rigidity is needed.
  2. Placement: These newel posts are typically placed at critical points along the staircase or landing where extra support is necessary. This could be in the middle of a long stair run or on a wide landing to ensure the handrail remains firm and secure.
  3. Design Integration: While they are functional, stabilizer newel posts are also designed to seamlessly integrate with the overall aesthetic of the staircase. They often match the style and material of other newel posts and balustrades in the stair design.

Our Stabilizer Newel Posts:

  • At our company, we offer stabilizer newel posts that are not only structurally sound but also visually appealing. They are crafted to complement the design of your staircase, ensuring that they blend in perfectly with your chosen style, whether it’s modern, traditional, or something in between.
  • We ensure that our stabilizer newel posts are made from high-quality materials, providing the necessary strength and durability for long-lasting support.

Incorporating a stabilizer newel post into your staircase design can significantly enhance both the safety and appearance of your stairway. It’s a wise investment for those looking to ensure the longevity and integrity of their staircase, especially in designs that demand additional support. With our selection, you can find the perfect stabilizer newel post to meet your structural needs without compromising on style.

Shop our stabilizer posts here.

What is a starting newel post?

A starting newel post is a prominent and essential feature in many staircases, particularly noted for its position and design. It is a type of newel post, which is a large, vertical support post used in staircase construction. The starting newel post specifically refers to the post located at the very beginning of the staircase, usually at the bottom landing or the first step. This post serves both a functional and an aesthetic purpose in the staircase design.

Characteristics of a Starting Newel Post:

  1. Location: As its name suggests, the starting newel post is situated at the start of the staircase. Its placement marks the beginning of the handrail system and sets the tone for the staircase’s design.
  2. Design and Shape: Standard newel posts, including starting newel posts, are typically rectangular in shape. They often feature a block top design, which adds a distinctive architectural detail to the staircase. This block top can be simple or can include more elaborate carvings or moldings, depending on the overall design aesthetic.
  3. Focal Point: The starting newel post is often considered the most focal part of the stair. Its design and prominence make it a key architectural feature, setting the stylistic theme for the entire staircase and, by extension, the surrounding space.
  4. Use in Post-to-Post Systems: Starting newel posts are commonly used in post-to-post handrail systems. In such systems, the handrail maintains a consistent height as it runs from one newel post to another, with the starting newel post being the initial point of this sequence.

Importance in Staircase Design:

  • Structural Support: The starting newel post provides critical support for the handrail, ensuring stability and safety in the staircase.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: Beyond its structural role, the starting newel post offers significant aesthetic value. Its design can range from simple and modern to intricately detailed, allowing it to either blend seamlessly with the home’s interior or stand out as a decorative statement piece.

In summary, a starting newel post is a key component in the design and function of a staircase. It provides essential support for the handrail and contributes significantly to the staircase’s overall aesthetic. Whether you are building a new staircase or renovating an existing one, the choice of starting newel post can have a substantial impact on both the style and the structural integrity of your stairway.

Shop our wood newel posts here

What is a box newel post?

A box newel post is a distinctive type of newel post used in staircase design, known for its unique construction and aesthetic appeal. Unlike traditional turned newel posts, which are generally shaped from a single piece of wood, box newels are constructed from several pieces of wood joined together to form a hollow, box-like structure. This design allows for a variety of styles and customization options, making box newel posts a popular choice in both contemporary and traditional staircase designs.

Key Features of a Box Newel Post:

  1. Construction: Box newel posts are typically built with four sides, creating a hollow, box-like form. This structure can be plain or adorned with decorative panels, moldings, or carvings, offering a wide range of design possibilities.
  2. Visual Impact: These posts are often larger and more robust than traditional newel posts, making them a focal point in staircase design. Their substantial size and presence can add a sense of grandeur and solidity to a stairway.
  3. Customization: The flat surfaces of a box newel post provide an excellent canvas for customization. They can feature intricate designs, including fluting, beveling, or other architectural details, allowing for a high degree of personalization.
  4. Versatility in Design: Box newel posts can be designed to fit a wide range of architectural styles. Whether it’s a sleek, minimalist look for a modern home or a richly detailed post for a more traditional setting, box newels can be adapted to suit various aesthetics.

Applications in Staircase Design:

  • Structural Role: Box newel posts serve an important structural function, anchoring the handrail system at key points such as the bottom and top of the staircase or at landings and turns.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: Their distinctive design and the potential for customization make box newel posts not only a structural element but also a significant decorative feature in a staircase.

In summary, a box newel post is a stylish and versatile option for those looking to add a statement piece to their staircase. Its robust construction and customizable design make it a favored choice for homeowners and designers seeking to create a staircase with both architectural interest and structural integrity. At our company, we offer a range of box newel post designs, catering to various tastes and architectural styles, ensuring that your staircase is not just a functional element but also a key part of your home’s aesthetic.

Shop our box newel posts here.

What is a mitered return tread?

A mitered return tread is a specific type of stair tread commonly used in open staircase designs. This tread style features a finished look on one or both ends, achieved through a mitered edge and a return piece that wraps around the side of the stair. It is particularly favored in staircases where the sides of the treads are visible, as it offers a polished and refined appearance.

Key Characteristics of a Mitered Return Tread:

  1. Mitered Edge: The ‘mitered’ part of the name comes from the miter joint used to connect the main part of the tread to the return piece. A miter joint is an angled joint that creates a seamless and aesthetic connection between the tread and the return.
  2. Return Piece: The ‘return’ refers to the small piece of wood that extends from the mitered edge of the tread, wrapping around the side of the stair. This return piece gives the tread a finished look on the exposed side, enhancing its visual appeal.
  3. Use in Open Staircases: Mitered return treads are ideal for open staircases where the sides of the stairs are visible. The finished edges ensure that the staircase looks complete and elegant from all angles.
  4. Customization: These treads can be customized in terms of wood type, finish, and size to match the specific design and aesthetic of the staircase and surrounding space.

Benefits of Mitered Return Treads:

  • Aesthetic Appeal: The mitered return adds a sophisticated touch to the staircase, making it an attractive feature in open-plan homes or spaces where the staircase is a focal point.
  • Versatility in Design: These treads can be crafted to suit various architectural styles, from modern to traditional, thanks to the wide range of customization options.
  • Enhanced Safety: The return piece also serves to cover the end grain of the wood, which can help in preventing splintering and wear over time, thereby enhancing the safety and durability of the stair treads.

In summary, a mitered return tread is a beautifully crafted component that brings both functional and aesthetic value to a staircase. It is particularly suited to open staircase designs where the finished sides of the treads contribute significantly to the overall look and feel of the space. Our selection of mitered return treads offers a range of customization options, ensuring that your staircase can be both a stunning and cohesive part of your home’s design.

Shop our mitered return stair treads here.

What is a skirtboard?

A skirtboard in staircase design is a decorative and functional component that runs along the side of the stairs where they meet the wall. Also known as a stringer board or stair stringer, it serves as a trim piece that covers the gap between the stair treads and risers and the adjoining wall. Skirtboards are a key architectural element in both the construction and the aesthetic detailing of a staircase.

Key Features and Functions of a Skirtboard:

  1. Covering Gaps: The primary function of a skirtboard is to cover the space or gap between the wall and the edges of the stair treads and risers. This not only provides a finished look but also helps in maintaining the cleanliness of the stairs by preventing debris from falling into the gaps.
  2. Decorative Element: Skirtboards can be simple and sleek or can feature ornamental designs such as moulding details, complementing the overall design of the staircase and the surrounding interior space.
  3. Alignment and Support: While mainly decorative, skirtboards also play a role in aligning the treads and risers properly during the construction of the staircase. They offer an additional layer of support to the staircase structure.

Installation and Customization:

  • Material and Finish: Skirtboards are typically made from wood, and the material can be chosen to match or contrast with the stair treads, risers, and handrails. They can be stained, painted, or finished to complement the overall color scheme and design style of the staircase and surrounding area.
  • Customizable Design: Depending on the architectural style of the staircase, skirtboards can be custom-designed. Whether it’s a traditional, contemporary, or a more elaborate design, the skirtboard can be tailored to enhance the aesthetic appeal of the stairway.

Importance in Staircase Design:

  • Aesthetic Integration: Skirtboards help in creating a seamless transition between the stairs and the wall, enhancing the visual flow and cohesion of the space.
  • Enhanced Finish: By covering the gaps and providing a clean edge to the stair treads and risers, skirtboards contribute significantly to the polished and complete appearance of the staircase.

In summary, a skirtboard is an essential component in staircase construction and design. It not only serves a practical purpose by covering gaps and adding support but also greatly contributes to the overall aesthetic and finish of the stairway. Our range of skirtboards offers various options in terms of material, design, and finish, allowing for customization to suit any staircase design and home décor style.

What is an iron baluster?

An iron baluster, also commonly known as a spindle or iron picket, is a slender vertical post that forms an essential part of a staircase’s balustrade. The balustrade, which includes the handrail, base rail, and balusters, is a critical safety feature that also significantly contributes to the staircase’s aesthetic appeal. Iron balusters, in particular, are favored for their strength, durability, and versatility in design.

Key Characteristics of Iron Balusters:

  1. Material: Made from iron, these balusters offer robustness and longevity, making them a popular choice for both indoor and outdoor staircases. Their metallic nature allows for a range of finishes, including matte, glossy, or textured.
  2. Design Versatility: One of the most notable features of iron balusters is their versatility in design. They can range from simple, sleek lines to more intricate patterns, including twists, scrolls, and other decorative shapes. This makes them suitable for various interior styles, from modern minimalism to classic or ornate designs.
  3. Structural Role: Iron balusters provide essential support to the handrail, contributing to the overall stability and safety of the staircase.
  4. Aesthetic Appeal: Beyond their functional role, iron balusters are often used as a decorative element. They can serve as a focal point in a staircase design, adding elegance and character to the space.

Alternative Terms for Iron Balusters:

  • Iron Spindles: This term is interchangeably used with ‘baluster’ and refers to the same component. ‘Spindle’ is often used in a more casual context but carries the same meaning.
  • Iron Pickets: Another alternative term, ‘picket’ is sometimes used, especially in regions where this terminology is more common in the context of fencing and railing design.

In conclusion, iron balusters are a key element in staircase design, offering both functional support and aesthetic versatility. They are an excellent choice for those looking to add a touch of elegance and strength to their stairways. With a wide range of designs and finishes available, iron balusters can be tailored to suit any architectural style and personal preference. Whether referred to as balusters, spindles, or pickets, these iron components play a pivotal role in enhancing the beauty and functionality of staircases.

Shop our iron balusters here.

View our official installation guide here.

What is a handrail?

A handrail, specifically referring to a wood handrail for interior residential staircases, is a key component in staircase design that serves both functional and aesthetic purposes. It is the part of the stair railing system that people hold onto for support and balance while ascending or descending the stairs. In addition to its primary role in ensuring safety, a wood handrail also contributes significantly to the overall look and feel of the staircase and the interior space.

Key Characteristics of Wood Handrails:

  1. Material: Made from wood, these handrails offer a natural, warm aesthetic that can complement various interior styles. The type of wood used can range from common species like oak, pine, and maple to more exotic or luxurious varieties, each bringing a unique texture and color to the design.
  2. Design and Shape: Wood handrails come in various designs and shapes, from simple and sleek lines to more elaborate profiles with intricate carvings or mouldings. The shape of the handrail is not only a design choice but also a functional one, as it affects the grip and comfort of the handrail.
  3. Finish Options: The versatility of wood allows for a range of finish options. Handrails can be stained to showcase the natural grain of the wood, painted for a more contemporary look, or varnished to enhance durability and resistance to wear.
  4. Safety and Compliance: Handrails are essential for safety, providing stability and support. They are designed to meet specific building codes and regulations, which dictate aspects like height, strength, and grip size.

Applications in Interior Design:

  • Aesthetic Integration: Wood handrails can be designed to harmonize with the home’s architectural style and interior décor. Whether the setting is traditional, modern, rustic, or eclectic, a wood handrail can be crafted to enhance the space’s overall aesthetic.
  • Functional Elegance: Beyond their practical purpose, wood handrails add an element of elegance and craftsmanship to a staircase. They can be a focal point in the design, drawing attention to the quality and detail of the woodwork.

In summary, a wood handrail is an essential element of any interior residential staircase, providing safety and contributing to the staircase’s visual appeal. Its material, design, and finish can be tailored to suit the specific style and needs of the home, making it not just a functional component but also an integral part of the home’s design narrative. With a variety of wood types and design options available, homeowners can find the perfect handrail to complement their staircase and enhance their home’s interior.

Browse our wood handrails here.

What is a base shoe?

Base shoes, specifically designed for iron balusters in staircases, are decorative elements that add a polished and refined touch to the staircase assembly. These small but significant accessories are intended to be placed at the top or bottom of iron balusters, enhancing the overall visual appeal and providing a seamless transition between the baluster and the staircase structure.

Key Features and Functions of Base Shoes for Iron Balusters:

  1. Aesthetic Enhancement: Base shoes serve to elegantly cover the junction where the iron balusters meet the stair tread or handrail. This not only gives the staircase a more finished and cohesive look but also adds a touch of sophistication.
  2. Design Versatility: We offer a wide selection of iron baluster shoes in various styles and finishes, accommodating nearly any baluster design. Whether your staircase has a traditional charm or a contemporary edge, our range of base shoes can complement your design vision effectively.
  3. Ease of Installation: Installing these base shoes is straightforward and user-friendly. They are designed to easily slide onto the bottom or top of the balusters before the balusters are secured into place. A dab of epoxy can be added for extra stability, and once it dries, the installation is complete. This process eliminates the need for additional steps like sanding, staining, or gap filling, making it a convenient solution for both professionals and DIY enthusiasts.

Benefits of Using Base Shoes in Staircase Design:

  • Refined Finish: Base shoes contribute to a more refined and professional finish for iron balusters, elevating the overall aesthetic of the staircase.
  • Time and Effort Saving: The simplicity of the installation process saves time and effort, making it an appealing choice for quick and efficient staircase upgrades or remodels.
  • Customizable Options: With the variety of styles and finishes available, base shoes offer the flexibility to match or contrast with the existing staircase and baluster design, allowing for customization according to personal preference and interior décor.

In summary, base shoes are a functional and decorative addition to iron balusters in staircase designs. They enhance the appearance of the staircase, offering a more finished and professional look while being exceptionally easy to install. With our extensive selection of styles and finishes, finding the perfect base shoes to complement your iron balusters and elevate your staircase’s appearance is both convenient and rewarding.

Shop our base shoes for iron balusters here.

What is a tandem cap?

A tandem cap, in the context of staircase design, is a specialized component used in conjunction with newel posts and handrails. It serves a dual purpose in an over-the-post handrail system, which is a style where the handrail runs over the top of the newel posts. The tandem cap is designed to not only aesthetically cover the top of a newel post but also to effectively join two sections of the handrail together.

Key Functions and Features of a Tandem Cap:

  1. Newel Post Cap: The tandem cap acts as a cap for the newel post, providing a finished and polished look. It sits atop the newel post, covering the upper end and enhancing the post’s visual appeal.
  2. Handrail Joining: In addition to capping the newel post, the tandem cap is uniquely designed to facilitate the joining of two handrail sections. This is particularly important in over-the-post systems where the handrail flows continuously over the newel posts. The tandem cap ensures a smooth, seamless transition between the handrail sections.
  3. Design Integration: Tandem caps are crafted to blend seamlessly with the overall design of the staircase. They come in various styles and finishes to match or complement the newel posts and handrails, ensuring a cohesive look.

Advantages of Using a Tandem Cap:

  • Aesthetic Appeal: Tandem caps add a touch of elegance and sophistication to the staircase, enhancing the overall design.
  • Structural Integrity: By securely joining two handrail sections, tandem caps contribute to the structural integrity of the handrail system, ensuring stability and safety.
  • Continuous Transition: The use of a tandem cap in an over-the-post system allows for a smooth and uninterrupted handrail line, which is both visually pleasing and functional.

In summary, a tandem cap is an essential component in over-the-post staircase systems, offering both functional and aesthetic benefits. It provides an elegant solution for covering newel posts and seamlessly joining handrail sections, contributing to the safety, integrity, and beauty of the staircase. With various design options available, tandem caps can be selected to perfectly align with the style and finish of your staircase, ensuring a harmonious and polished appearance.

Shop our tandem caps for wood handrail here.

What is an iron newel post?

An iron newel post is a substantial, vertical post made of iron that serves as a key structural and decorative element in a staircase railing system. Newel posts are typically located at the base and top of a staircase, as well as at points where the stairway changes direction. In the case of iron newel posts, they bring not only strength and stability to the railing system but also contribute significantly to the staircase’s overall aesthetic with their distinct material and design features.

Key Characteristics of Iron Newel Posts:

  1. Material: Made of iron, these newel posts are known for their durability and strength. Iron’s robust nature makes it an ideal material for supporting the handrail and balusters in a staircase.
  2. Design Flexibility: Iron newel posts come in a variety of designs, from sleek and simple to ornate and intricate. They can feature various artistic elements such as scrolls, twists, and other decorative motifs, making them suitable for different architectural styles, from modern to traditional.
  3. Aesthetic Appeal: The use of iron allows for a range of finishes, such as matte, polished, or even painted. This versatility means that iron newel posts can be tailored to complement the interior decor and style of a space.
  4. Structural Role: As with other newel posts, iron newel posts provide critical support to the handrail system, anchoring it at key points along the staircase. This is especially important for longer staircases or those with landings and turns.

Advantages of Iron Newel Posts:

  • Durability: Iron’s inherent strength ensures that newel posts made from this material are long-lasting and can withstand significant wear and tear.
  • Design Statement: Iron newel posts can serve as a striking design feature in a staircase, adding an element of elegance and sophistication.
  • Versatility: They can be designed to suit various aesthetic preferences, fitting seamlessly into a range of interior designs.

In conclusion, iron newel posts are not just functional components of a staircase but also key design elements. They offer a combination of strength, durability, and aesthetic versatility, making them a popular choice for both residential and commercial staircases. With their diverse range of styles and finishes, iron newel posts can significantly enhance the visual appeal and structural integrity of any stairway.

Shop square iron newel posts here.

Shop round iron newel posts here.

What is a stair tread?

Stair treads, particularly wooden stair treads, are a crucial component in both the functionality and aesthetic of a staircase. They are the horizontal parts of the stairs upon which you step. In terms of wooden stair treads, they not only offer a natural and warm aesthetic but also bring durability and strength to the staircase design. Our range of top-of-the-line wood stair treads and risers are designed to suit a variety of needs, whether for staircase remodels or new construction projects.

Key Features of Our Wood Stair Treads:

  1. Premium Solid Wood: Our stair treads are made from high-quality solid wood, ensuring robustness and longevity. Unlike treads made with veneers or laminates, our solid wood construction resists splitting and warping.
  2. Readiness for Customization: Each tread is free of defects and comes with a standard 1-inch thickness, ready for staining to the color of your choice. This allows for seamless integration with your existing decor or the creation of a new desired look.
  3. RetroFit Tread Kits: For homeowners looking to transition from carpeted stairs to hardwood, our RetroFit Tread Kits provide an ideal solution. These kits simplify the update process, eliminating the need for a full staircase remodel.

Advantages of Our Wooden Stair Treads:

  • Industry-Standard Design: Our treads meet all building code standards, ensuring safety and reliability in your staircase.
  • Wide Selection: We offer a broad array of wood species, allowing you to choose treads that perfectly match your home’s style and design.
  • Quality Assurance: Trusted by top home builders in America for over 10 years, our wood staircase treads are guaranteed to have excellent color matching on one side and be free of defects. This focus on quality makes them a cost-effective option for both staircase remodels and new constructions.

Application and Use:

  • Staircase Remodels: Our wood treads are ideal for updating an existing staircase, providing a fresh, modern look while enhancing the staircase’s durability.
  • New Construction Projects: For new staircases, our treads offer a combination of quality, aesthetic appeal, and compliance with building standards.

In summary, our wood stair treads are designed to provide exceptional value, aesthetic appeal, and easy installation. They are suitable for various applications, from staircase remodeling to new construction projects. By choosing our high-quality wood stair treads and risers, you can elevate the design and functionality of your staircase, ensuring it remains a central, enduring feature of your home for years to come.

Visit our collection of Wood Stair Treads to explore our extensive selection and find the perfect wood stair treads for your needs.

What is a riser?

A riser, in the context of staircase design, is the vertical component positioned between each step, connecting the tread of one step to the tread of the next. It essentially forms the ‘face’ of each step, contributing both to the staircase’s functionality and its aesthetic appeal. Our collection of Wood Risers for Stairs is designed to enhance and complement your staircase, offering both practicality and style.

Key Characteristics of Our Wood Risers:

  1. Functionality: The primary function of a riser is to close the gap between the treads of the staircase. This not only gives the staircase a more finished look but also contributes to the safety by preventing objects or feet from slipping between the steps.
  2. Aesthetic Element: Risers present an excellent opportunity for adding a personal touch to your staircase. They can be stained to match the wood treads for a cohesive look or painted in a contrasting color for a bold statement.
  3. Standard Dimensions: Our risers are typically 1×8 in size, meaning they are 3/4 inches thick and 7-1/4 inches high. They come in various lengths to accommodate different staircase lengths and designs.

Advantages of Choosing Our Wood Risers:

  • Versatility in Design: Whether you prefer a uniform look with risers that match the treads or a more dynamic design with painted risers, our products offer the flexibility to realize your vision.
  • Quality Material: Made from high-quality wood, our risers ensure durability and a refined appearance. They are designed to complement both traditional and modern staircase designs.
  • Customization: Given the variety of lengths available, our risers can be tailored to fit the specific dimensions of your staircase, ensuring a perfect fit and a seamless installation process.

In conclusion, risers are an indispensable part of a staircase, providing both structural support and an opportunity for aesthetic enhancement. By selecting our Wood Risers for your staircase, you can elevate the overall design, ensuring that your stairs are not just functional but also a reflection of your personal style. Explore our selection to find the perfect risers for your staircase and take your home’s design to new heights.

Shop our Wood Stair Risers here.

What is a starting step?

A starting step, often a focal point in staircase design, is the first step at the base of a staircase. Unlike the subsequent uniform steps, the starting step usually features a more distinctive and elaborate design. Starting Steps Kits are specifically designed to replace a basic bottom step with one that is more visually appealing and architecturally interesting. These kits are particularly beneficial for stair remodeling projects where enhancing both the functionality and aesthetic appeal of the staircase is desired.

Key Features of Starting Steps Kits:

  1. Elegant Design: Starting steps are typically more ornate than the other steps in a staircase. They often have a curved or flared design, making them wider and more prominent than standard steps.
  2. Visual Appeal: The unique design of the starting step serves as an elegant introduction to the staircase, setting the tone for the entire stairway. It can be a significant design element in a home, contributing to the overall style and feel of the space.
  3. Functional Improvement: While they are primarily decorative, starting steps can also enhance the functionality of the staircase. Their larger size can make the entry to the staircase more accessible and comfortable.

Benefits of Using Starting Steps Kits:

  • Staircase Remodeling: These kits are ideal for homeowners looking to upgrade their staircase during a remodel. They provide a straightforward solution for replacing a basic bottom step with something more sophisticated.
  • Customization: Our assortment of Starting Steps Kits comes in various styles and finishes, allowing you to choose a design that complements your home’s interior and your personal aesthetic preferences.
  • Ease of Installation: Designed for convenience, these kits simplify the process of enhancing your staircase, making them a practical choice for both DIY enthusiasts and professional installers.

In summary, a starting step is an essential component for those seeking to elevate the look of their staircase from ordinary to extraordinary. Our Starting Steps Kits offer an excellent way to achieve this transformation, providing both beauty and functionality. Whether you are undertaking a full staircase remodel or simply looking to make a significant impact with a single change, our kits provide the perfect solution to start your project on the right step. Explore our selection and find the ideal starting step to complement your stair remodel project

Shop Starting Steps here.

What is an opening cap?

An opening cap is a specialized fitting used in staircase design, particularly in over-the-post handrail systems. It serves as a connection point between the handrail and a pin top newel post. The opening cap is designed to integrate seamlessly with our existing handrail profiles, providing both a functional and aesthetic solution in stairway construction.

Key Features of an Opening Cap:

  1. Rounded Cap End: The distinctive feature of an opening cap is its rounded cap end. This part of the fitting is designed to fit over the top of a pin top newel post, which is a type of newel post with a slender, pin-like top.
  2. Compatibility with Handrail Profiles: The opening cap is constructed to attach easily to our existing handrail profiles. This compatibility ensures a cohesive look and a secure connection between the handrail and the newel post.
  3. Use in Over-the-Post Systems: In an over-the-post handrail system, where the handrail runs continuously over the newel posts, the opening cap plays a crucial role in transitioning from the handrail to the newel post, both structurally and visually.

Advantages of Using an Opening Cap:

  • Aesthetic Integration: The opening cap provides a smooth and visually pleasing transition between the handrail and the pin top newel post. It enhances the staircase’s overall appearance by creating a cohesive and polished look.
  • Functional Role: Beyond aesthetics, the opening cap is integral to the structural integrity of the staircase. It ensures a stable and secure connection between the handrail and the newel post, which is essential for safety.
  • Versatility in Design: The design of the opening cap allows it to blend seamlessly with various staircase styles, making it a versatile choice for different architectural aesthetics.

In summary, an opening cap is a key component in staircase construction, especially in over-the-post handrail systems. It offers a practical and elegant solution for connecting handrails to pin top newel posts, ensuring both the safety and the aesthetic appeal of the staircase. With its rounded cap end and compatibility with our handrail profiles, the opening cap is an excellent choice for those looking to achieve a seamless and sophisticated look in their stairway design.

Shop our opening caps here.

What is a quarter turn?

A quarter turn, specifically a level quarter turn, is a handrail fitting used in staircase design to create a 90 degree directional change in the handrail. This component is particularly useful in staircases that require a handrail to make a 90-degree turn, either to the left or right, without changing elevation. It is designed to integrate smoothly with a stair handrail, maintaining both the handrail’s continuous flow and aesthetic appeal.

Key Features of a Level Quarter Turn:

  1. Directional Change: The quarter turn enables the handrail to make a 90-degree turn, either to the left or right, which is essential in staircases with turns or landings.
  2. Compatibility with Handrail Profiles: This fitting is crafted to attach seamlessly to our existing handrail profiles, ensuring a consistent look and feel throughout the staircase.
  3. Includes Mounting Hardware: Each quarter turn comes with two sets of mounting hardware, which facilitates a secure and straightforward installation process.

Advantages of Using a Level Quarter Turn:

  • Functional Adaptability: The quarter turn is a practical solution for staircases that require a handrail to navigate corners or change direction, enhancing the staircase’s functionality.
  • Aesthetic Continuity: It helps in maintaining the handrail’s aesthetic continuity, providing a smooth transition around corners without disrupting the handrail’s design.
  • Ease of Installation: With the included mounting hardware, the installation of a quarter turn is made easier, ensuring a strong and reliable connection to the handrail.

In summary, a level quarter turn is an integral component in the design and functionality of staircases with turns. It not only facilitates a necessary change in direction for the handrail but also does so while maintaining the handrail’s visual flow and structural integrity. Its compatibility with our handrail profiles and the inclusion of mounting hardware make it a convenient and effective solution for enhancing the practicality and appearance of stair railings.

Shop our level quarter turn fittings here.

What is an Over Easing?

An over easing fitting is a stair part designed to provide a downward slope in handrail systems, ensuring a smooth and gradual transition between different elevations or angles. Ideal for integrating handrails that extend from a higher level to a lower one, this component is crucial for maintaining a consistent handrail profile and enhancing safety by eliminating abrupt changes in the handrail path.

Specifically useful in staircases where the handrail needs to descend smoothly to meet another section, over easings play a vital role in staircase design by ensuring comfort and security for users. These fittings are particularly beneficial in scenarios where a handrail transitions from an elevated platform to the start of a staircase or between flights of stairs in multi-level staircases.

Our over easing fittings are tailored to support transitions with up to a 60-degree downward slope and are available for all wood handrail species and profiles we provide. Each over easing comes equipped with two hardware installation kits and detailed instructions, making the installation process manageable and efficient.

What is an up easing?

An up easing fitting is an essential component in stair design, specifically engineered to facilitate a smooth upward slope for handrail systems. This piece allows handrails to transition gracefully from a lower elevation to a higher one, ensuring the handrail maintains a continuous and ergonomic path. Up easings are particularly beneficial in staircases where the handrail ascends to meet a higher section, such as the approach to a landing or the transition between different levels of a stairway.

By providing a 60-degree upward slope, up easings significantly enhance the functionality and safety of a staircase. They ensure a seamless handrail flow, crucial for user comfort and adherence to safety standards. This is especially important in designs where the handrail must rise from the main flight of stairs to connect with another part of the railing system at a higher level.

Our up easing fittings are designed to complement all wood handrail species and profiles we offer, accommodating a wide range of staircase designs. Each up easing fitting includes two hardware installation kits and comprehensive instructions, simplifying the installation process and ensuring a perfect fit and finish.

What is a Returned End?

A returned end is a decorative fitting designed to cap off the end of a wood handrail, providing a polished and complete look. This component is specifically crafted to ensure that the handrail ends smoothly and elegantly, without leaving any raw or exposed edges. The primary function of a returned end is aesthetic, enhancing the staircase’s overall appearance by giving the handrail a seamless finish.

Incorporating a returned end into your staircase design adds a touch of refinement and attention to detail that can significantly impact the visual appeal of your stairway. It’s an essential element for homeowners and designers who value both the functionality and the aesthetics of their staircase components. By smoothly integrating with the existing handrail, returned ends contribute to a cohesive and sophisticated staircase design.

What is a kickboard?

A kickboard, also known as a riser, is the vertical piece that sits between each step on a staircase. It plays a crucial role in supporting the treads, which are the horizontal parts of the stairs you step on. Our kickboards are crafted from professional-grade wood, ensuring both durability and visual appeal. This construction quality guarantees that the kickboards not only provide the necessary strength to support the staircase but also contribute to the overall beauty of the stair design.

Risers offer a unique opportunity to enhance the staircase’s aesthetic, as they can either complement or contrast with the treads. This choice allows for a wide range of design possibilities, enabling homeowners and designers to make a distinct aesthetic statement through their staircase. Whether aiming for a harmonious look or seeking to introduce an element of visual interest through contrast, our kickboards provide the flexibility to achieve your desired outcome.

What is a rosette?

A wood rosette is a decorative element often used in staircase design and interior trim work to add architectural detail and elegance. Typically circular, oval, square or rectangular in shape, rosettes serve as ornamental caps or accents placed at key points where handrails meet a wall or where other architectural features require a visually pleasing termination point. These small but impactful pieces are crafted from wood and can vary in design, from simple and understated to intricate and elaborate, depending on the overall style of the space.

In staircases, wood rosettes are frequently used to embellish the area where the handrail connects to the wall, providing a smooth and finished transition that enhances both the functionality and aesthetic appeal of the stairway. Beyond their practical application of concealing hardware or joinery, rosettes add a touch of craftsmanship and detail that elevates the design of the staircase and surrounding interior.

What is a gooseneck?

A gooseneck is a staircase handrail component designed to connect a lower handrail, running parallel to the staircase stringer, with a higher handrail on a landing or balcony. This fitting is characterized by its distinctive shape, which smoothly transitions the handrail between two different elevations, maintaining the flow and continuity of the railing system. Goosenecks are essential for creating seamless handrail transitions in multi-level staircase designs, ensuring both the aesthetic cohesiveness and safety of the stairway. They are carefully crafted to meet the specific angle and height requirements of the staircase, providing a custom fit that integrates perfectly with the overall design.

What is a landing tread?

A landing tread is a specialized type of stair part used at the top of a staircase or along the edge of a landing or balcony. It serves as the transitional piece between the flooring of the upper level and the staircase itself. Landing treads are designed with a nosing that extends over the riser, providing a finished look and ensuring a seamless transition from the stairway to the landing area. This not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of the staircase but also contributes to the safety and structural integrity of the stair system. Landing treads are available in various wood species and finishes to match or complement the surrounding flooring and staircase components, allowing for a cohesive design throughout the space.

What is a pin top newel?

A pin top newel is a type of newel post characterized by its slender, pointed top, designed to fit into a corresponding hole in the handrail or cap, rather than being topped with a decorative finial or cap. This style of newel is often used in staircase designs where a sleek, uninterrupted line is desired, or in systems that feature handrails connecting directly to the newel post without the need for additional joinery or hardware. Pin top newels are particularly popular in contemporary and modern staircase designs, where clean lines and minimalist aesthetics are prioritized. They are available in various wood species, allowing them to be easily integrated into a wide range of interior design styles and color schemes.

What is a turnout?

A turnout is a stair part used at the bottom of a stairway to provide a graceful ending to the handrail. Instead of continuing straight into the wall or abruptly ending, a turnout curves away from the stairs, creating an elegant, flowing finish. This feature is especially useful in spaces where extending the handrail directly into a wall is not practical or aesthetically pleasing. Turnouts are available in designs that complement both traditional and contemporary staircase styles, adding a touch of sophistication and enhancing the overall visual appeal of the stairway. They serve not only a functional purpose by marking the end of the handrail but also contribute significantly to the staircase’s decorative elements.