'It’s Smart And Classic' — Designers Agree This is the Perfect Color to Paint Your Staircase

You can’t go wrong painting your staircase in this elegant hue if you want it to look sophisticated, calming, and timeless

a large modern entryway with a daybed
(Image credit: David Mitchell. Design: Timothy Godbold)

Think of your staircase as the spine of your home. It runs through from the second you walk in, all the way to the top, and regardless of how you’ve chosen to decorate each floor and room within it, your staircase needs to provide a sense of flow, and a transitional link from one area to another. 

Choosing the right color can be tricky - especially if you haven’t stuck to just one decorating theme for your whole house that the staircase can follow - but there is one timeless color that's welcoming, warm, and sophisticated enough that will tick all the boxes needed to provide flow throughout your home and ensure that you won’t get bored of it either. 

Designers and color experts agree that warm beige - one of the most popular color trends for 2024 - and its many varieties which suit virtually any home, is the smartest choice. Here, they tell us the best tones to pick, and what to pair them with to achieve a modern home look.

Why is beige the best color to paint your staircase?

staircase with tiled stairs and large planter by Lisa Staton

(Image credit: Lisa Staton Interior Design)

For one, there are so many beautiful shades of beige to pick from for a painted staircase, it really is hard to get it wrong. This warm shade instantly makes a space look elevated and, due to its lightness, it will make a staircase appear more spacious too. ‘Beige is a wonderful choice of color in almost any scenario, large and small spaces alike,' says interior designer Jessica Shaw. 'With the right color, it can instantly provide a mood of calmness and serenity.' 

If you’re not sure what to choose from the many options available, Jessica shares her go-to picks. ‘I love Benjamin Moore Calm OC-22,' says the designer. 'This is a great choice for drenching a small space that may not receive any natural light. For more color and a warmer hue, Muslin OC-12 is also a winner.' 

‘Staircases benefit from being decorated with a concise palette to create a calm space,’ adds Helen Shaw, color expert at Benjamin Moore. ‘It is also important to remember your staircase connects the house between floors so the color chosen should feel harmonious with the rest of the house.' Decorating with beige is super easy too since the muted tones work well with most schemes.

What’s the best color pairing for a beige staircase?  

beige painted staircase with black accent handrail

(Image credit: Benjamin Moore)

For a super calming, sophisticated feel you can opt for a monochromatic color scheme, but if you like a bit of contrast go for a bolder look with a black tone. For a softer contrast, think about brightening your beige with white. 'When mixed with black, in particular black lacquer, you can achieve a classy, classic style,' says Jessica. 'Or brightening with white is never out of style.' 

‘If you use lighter shades on the walls, you can pick out the woodwork in a bolder tone such as Black Knight 2136-10,’ advises Helen. ‘If you have a dado, lean into these darker shades further by painting the lower half of the wall below the dado in the same color as the woodwork. The contrast offers a fantastic opportunity to highlight architectural features such as architraves and cornicing.' 

And if you love color, the good news is that there are loads of colors that go with beige – you just need to pay attention to picking the right tone. ‘Given its neutrality - you can add personal flair and originality by accenting almost any color with beige, just be mindful as to your beige's color temperature (warm or cool) when selecting your accent colors,' advises Jessica. 

Beige has seen many iterations throughout the years and so far it has remained a classic choice that won’t go out of style and will look beautiful in any modern home.

Raluca Racasan
News writer

Raluca is Digital News Writer for Livingetc.com and passionate about all things interior and living beautifully. Coming from a background writing and styling shoots for fashion magazines such as Marie Claire Raluca’s love for design started at a very young age when her family’s favourite weekend activity was moving the furniture around the house ‘for fun’. Always happiest in creative environments in her spare time she loves designing mindful spaces and doing colour consultations. She finds the best inspiration in art, nature, and the way we live, and thinks that a home should serve our mental and emotional wellbeing as well as our lifestyle.