If you have a clean sheet of paper and want to design the home of your dreams, you will need to introduce a variety of different elements. If it's a two-storey home, then you will, of course, need a staircase, but you should put some additional effort into its design to truly personalise it. What options are available in terms of style and material?
Of course, you will need to take into account certain practical issues whenever you design a staircase. Fundamentally, you will need to calculate the distance between the two different floors, and this will determine how many risers you need to achieve your objective. This calculation can be quite complex, and you will also need to consider whether the staircase is simply straight or will need to turn to get around an obstacle. You may need to incorporate a half landing within the design, or, if you really want to be contemporary, you could even choose an entirely spiral staircase.
Remember that you will have to live with your design before you get too carried away, especially if you need to move awkward or heavy items up and down. Bear in mind any older family members who may live with you as well.
If you want to make your home as bright and airy as possible, incorporate natural lighting and choose materials that will reflect light rather than absorb. In this case, you may want to incorporate glass panels as a balustrade or even add roof lights to the ceiling above the stairwell. Glass and acrylic can really make a design statement, and they are very strong. This option is one of the more expensive, however, especially if you need to have your panels made-to-measure.
If you want to present a more traditional image, then you should choose timber. This will be very strong as well, and it is quite easy to work with, so this should reduce your installation costs. Talk with your builder to see what options are available, but you can usually choose from hardwoods like oak or something less substantial like an engineered pine.
For those who want to make a significant impression, choose stone. You may be able to design your staircase using precast sections of concrete, or introduce a traditional timber staircase and clad it with stone panels instead.
Making Your Plan
Talk with your installation expert at the beginning of the process. They will be able to help you calculate your needs, begin work on the design and discuss the material options.