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How I re finished my stair railings

We’ve been busy around here lately. After we got the downstairs wall demo’d we started working on the stair railings. I knew the look I wanted, and knew it would take a lot of work. The original railings were a light oak and white. We are putting a dark acacia wood on the floor, so I wanted the top of my railings to match.  We decided that instead of just painting the whole railing, we would try stripping off the varnish and stain and try re staining the wood. We used a citris stripper we found at Home Depot.

We painted it on the wood top, waited the recommended time, and scraped the finish right off. It took a lot of elbow grease, but it worked great.

Here is a picture of the stripped wood. Between the citristrip and a lot of sanding, everything came off and the wood was ready to stain. I only stripped the hand rail. We decided to paint the rest white.

Here’s how it looks after we got the darker stain on it. I used a minwax stain and finished it with a rub on semi gloss polyurethane. That was the easiest part of the project. Next I got to work painting everything else.

I just painted everything else with my ultra pure white wall trim I use on all the trim in my house. I did do a first coat of zinsser primer just to guarantee the paint stayed on and did not chip. All in all with the primer, the railings got three coats of paint.


It was a lot of work, but so worth it.  I love how just by staining and painting, the railings got such a great update.

I'm Erin, a busy mom of three, chauffeur, cook, housekeeper, and wanna be decorator. I love old movies, good books, and a daily trip to Lowes. We have recently bought a new we are fixing up and changing everything. This blog is to record our renovating journey. This is not the first house we have done. Actually, it is our third. My husband and I love a project. Any project. We both love working on our home, have the same taste, (which is great), and love working and re purposing things on our budget. We can show you how to put together a high end and creative look without breaking the bank. Taking something old and recreating it into something new and exciting for any room is my passion. Hope you enjoy this decorating journey with us!