Creating Your Staircase – Choosing the Balusters

October 09, 2013 2 min read

Balusters are slender vertical pieces of wood or wrought iron that are attached to the handrail throughout the length of the rail preventing people from falling through the area between the treads and the handrail. Also referred to as spindles, balusters come in a variety of styles and are most commonly offered in wood and wrought iron. Wood balusters are usually 1 1/4" or 1 3/4" wide and iron balusters are usually 1/2" to 9/16" wide at their center point.

When choosing your staircase balusters keep in mind that they not only enhance the beauty of your home, but can add to its value as well. Often it’s the little touches that are seemingly unimportant that are the deciding factors for the purchase of a home. Balusters create an opportunity for homeowners to demonstrate personality and artistic taste. Be mindful that the selection of your balusters will have the greatest impact upon the overall style of your staircase.

Wood balusters are often deemed the more traditional option but offer a rustic and craftsman feel that can be interpreted as a more contemporary look as well. Wood balusters offer a heavier look and warmer feel. Iron balusters are typically smaller and colder but offer more versatility. Although iron balusters’ European roots date back hundreds of years, they are used so widely today that they are thought to give a contemporary look and feel to modern designs.

You should also consider mixing different materials to give a more eclectic custom modern vibe. Wood and Iron baluster combinations are a common theme that increase the possibilities of design. Combining the two materials create a balanced composition as the wood offers warmth and solid structure and the iron allows for more elaborate and versatile patterns.

The style of your home may easily determine the balustrade style. Then all that remains is selecting the specific baluster design within this style.  However, stairs and balustrades are considered a distinct piece of furniture that enhances the stylistic themes within home design.  It may be that you choose to design your staircase to reflect your personal style or the design of a room rather than the style that classifies your home.

Don’t fret too much about selecting the perfect balusters. It is very difficult to make a wrong choice because each decision is a reflection of personal style. Be creative! This is one piece of furniture that you can design and create yourself.



Article by Amber Burkhart

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