Introduction to Staircase Types and Materials
Updated: 2021-10-18
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Staircase is not only a great housing decoration but also a long-term investment. Technically, staircase is a number of steps that lead from one level to another. So what are the types of stairs and what kind of stairs' materials could be used to emphasize the unique style of interior? The more you know about the types of the stairs and the materials itself, the easier it will be to make a decision on the design you want according to your own taste and possibilities. Before you read futher on, go through the main keywords that will be used to describe the stairs.

All types of stairs contain two main parts: the landing and the steps of the stairs. Additional elements of the stairs are balusters, railings and decorative elements.

  • Step - is a short horizontal surface for the foot to facilitate ascent from one level to another
  • Baluster - is a part of the staircase that provides protection on the open sides of a stair
  • Railing - is a barrier consisting of a horizontal bar that supports the stairs
  • Stringer is an inclined member that supports the stairway


First of all let‘s discuss different types of stairs as these can be straight, quadrantal, with a half-space landing, circular, spiral, portable and suspended.

Straight-type staircase

Mostly, the straight staircase can be found in newly-built houses. The advantage of a straight type staircase is that you can make it yourself as long as the project is planned and executed carefully. The design of straight run staircase is most simple as each stair is of exactly the same measure. What is characteristic for the straight-type staircase is that the stairs continuously go straight till the very beginning of the floor. What should be noted next is that the straight-type staircase takes the highest amount of space. But at the same time these stairs are not as expensive to construct as other types of stairs. Thus, if you are considering the do-it-yourself design and don't mind the fact that straight staircase will be space-consuming it is the type of stairs that you could go for.

Quadrantal- type staircase

Another frequently designed type of staircase is called quadrantal which normally has the 90 degree turning angle. The construction of quadrantal type staircase is of a more complicated nature. What is typical for this particular type of stairs is that the turning of the stairs is normally to be made starting on either the very first stair or the higher one. Still, the position of the stairs and the turning angle could be designed according to your own request and the measurement of the walls. The railing can be designed on the right, left or both sides. When it comes to the construction of the quadrantal staircase itself, the advice and supervision of professionals is mostly recommended. But it really pays off as you will end up with the type of stairs that will help you save some space in your home.

Half-space landing type staircase

Half-space landing staircase is the type of stairs that you could go for if you have only a small amount of space. Thus, these are not only practical in terms of space saving but also successful in bringing the cozy atmosphere to your home. The construction of half-space landing stairs gives you some flexibility as the armrests can come in different dimensions, whereas the turning of the stairs can come in different angles.

Circular-type staircase

When it comes to the circular staircase it should be noted that this type of stairs will be a great element of your interior design. However, you should bear in mind that the construction of circular staircase will require a great amount of space. Therefore, these stairs are more to be designed as additional ones which are not being used that often. When it comes to the plan view of the circular stairs, it is known that circular stairs have an open circular form with a single center of gravity.

Spiral-type staircase

Spiral stairs have a closed circular form and a central supporting column. You could definitely go for the spiral staircase if you have little space available. What is important is to let you know is that even though the spiral-type staircase has a nice looking design, the spiral stairs are a little bit risky for safety reasons as generally these have winder steps.

Portable-type staircase

It can be easily recommended to go for the portable staircase if you are in a need to build the temporary stairs until you get ready with the construction of the permanent staircase. The portable stairs are easy in weight as well as volume. The key point here is that you will easily move it from one place to another without any hassle or difficulties.

Suspended-type stairs

Generally, suspended type staircase is a type of staircase which contains only one stringer or doesn't have one at all. These have the feature of being lightweight. What is more, the construction of these stairs is not only economic but also time-saving.

When it comes to materials for the stairs, it goes without saying that stairs can be made of different materials depending on your taste and requirements. Nowadays, the main materials used for the design of the stairs are wood, concrete, marble, granite and metal.

If you choose the wooden staircase, it will be the one of an undoubtedly firm structure. The wooden stairs will bring a unique style to you interior design. Wood is a long-term, lightweight and ecological material. The wooden staircase can come in an open or closed design. Both corners of the stairs can be fixed to the stringers. Another possibility is to have only one corner of the stairs fixed to a stringer.

Nowadays, the variety of wood will satisfy even the most sophisticated architect or amateur as different type of wood can be used for the construction of the wooden staircase. Pine, ash, maple are the most commonly used types of wood. Thus, each will be discussed in short to bring your knowledge to a better extent.

Oak-type stairs. Oak is known as the kind of wood that brings the spirit of nobility to your own home. Thus, oak-type stairs is a strong design of stairs.

Pinewood-type stairs. Pinewood is the kind of wood can be used for different designs of staircase. From one point of view, the kind of wood is fairly cheap; from the other point of view this kind of wood requires more continued attention as it is quite a soft wood.

Ashwood-type stairs have proved to be firm and of an impressive nature as the wood itself contains a natural print.

Maple-type stairs is a more rarely used kind of wood. It has a light colour, slight print and is also known as a firm one.

Other materials to be used for constructing stairs are as follows:

Metal-type stairs are quite popular. They can be run either in a closed or in an open design. The price is a little bit higher than of the wooden ones.

Concrete stairs. Concrete type stairs are very much known for being firm ones. The construction itself is quite complicated; time consuming as well as expensive. This might be the reason why this type is not that popular.

Marble stairs are to be designed only indoors and are resistant to dampness.

Granitic stairs are also resistant to dampness. That‘s why these stairs can be constructed pretty much anywhere. Stone is quite a sliding material; therefore, these stairs should be covered with non-sliding surface.Combined- type stairs is the type of stairs when different materials are being used, e.g. the wooden coat for the stairs, concrete stringer, metal railings and bollards.

Natural wood or plywood are the materials that can be used for the steps of the stairs.

The steps of the stairs can be fumed with different paints, varnished with different varnishers or oiled.

 Find more about stairs in Stairs&Railing

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