Painting the Banister Black & White

Hello! As you may have guessed, Roger & I have been on a total DIY home renovation spree lately. It's like a domino effect--when one project is complete we can't wait to start another. Instead of escaping down south to an all-inclusive resort this summer, we opted for a "Staycation" in attempt to beautify our home. My job: To tackle the front foyer. I'd like to share with you how I took our banister from too-traditional to modern-excellent. I absolutely adore it!

Sept 3 - Before stairs

Supplies needed for this project:

Tremclad Rust Paint (Black & White)

TSP for stripping

Microfiber cleaning cloth

Rotary sander (I picked up the Black & Decker Mouse) with 80, 120, 220 grit paper

Sanding Blocks - 80, 120 & 220 grit

2 paintbrushes for oil-based paint

Painters tape (I went through 2 rolls)

Drop cloth for spills

Tweezers (optional for picking out stray bristles)

Cost: Approx. $100 if you have to buy everything from scratch

Sept 3 - Supplies

To start the transformation, I had to first prep the wood for painting. I applied a TSP solution to the entire banister and rinsed 3 times with water. When dry, I tackled the hand railing with the electric sander. Which grit you go with depends on how much sanding needs to be done; in our case 80 was necessary to grind out years of abuse and questionable markings. (I discovered various religious symbols etched into the wood.) I then used the 120 grit sanding block on the spindles and less-scratched areas.

Sept 3 - More sanding

Next I taped up my boundaries. I wanted a nice crisp line between shades. I then painted the hand rail and larger spindles black and waited 24 hours before removing the tape.

Sept 3 - Taped Stairs

For unwanted paint spots, I applied a 1:20 solution of TSP and water.

Sept 3 - TSP

I taped again and applied the first coat of white paint to the spindles and base of the banister.

Sept 3 - White tape

I let that dry for 48 hours and applied a second coat of white -- this was a must for maximum opaqueness.

Sept 3 - More stairs

Love it!

I am so pleased with the finished look! Although time consuming (the project took me 4 days to complete), painting the banister is an easy and affordable way to revamp your front entrance. I feel like I've teased myself with what I've done; now I can't wait to rip up the carpet and get some hardwood on the stairs!

Oops! There I go getting ahead of myself again. One project at a time. But when I do replace the carpet, I promise to post about it! 🙂


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