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Modern Staircase Ideas: 22 of the Very Best Designs

Modern staircase ideas
(Image credit: Boca de Lobo)

There are so many modern staircase ideas out there it can be hard to know where to even begin when looking. Well, we've done the hard work for you and curated the crème de la crème of contemporary stairway designs to help you narrow down your favourite styles. 

Whether you're looking to update an existing house with a modern wood staircase  or to include the latest glass designs in a new one, approaching suppliers and architects with a clear idea in mind will save time and money. 

Take a look below for the very best trends, styles and structures – with a few industry tips to get you on your way – and check out our expert guide on staircase design for comprehensive advice on how to get started. 

1. Create a Staircase using Oak and Glass

Modern oak and glass staircase ideas

(Image credit: Woodfloors4u)

This u-shaped staircase with half-landing creates an enviable spot to relax in and makes the most of a double-height space before leading up to the mezzanine area. 

The oak handrail at the top matches the characterful flooring while the glass balustrade also means the room isn't divided up or interrupted. 

2. Install a Black Steel Staircase for a Contemporary Finish

black steel staircase ideas

(Image credit: Tile Giant)

Light, bright and airy, this room is the perfect blend between traditional materials and modern styling, in no doubt thanks to the handleless kitchen paired with the black steel staircase. 

3. Light Up a Glass and Metal Staircase

metal and glass staircase ideas

(Image credit: John Cullen Lighting)

A good lighting design can transform any simple staircase, as this example shows effortlessly. Alternating recessed LED floorwashers illuminate the treads beautifully while the glass balustrade lets the warm light flow into the main dining area. 

Concealing LED lights under each step of an open tread staircase also creates a cost-effective yet etherial appearance.  

4. Keep it Classic with a White Wood Staircase

white wood staircase ideas

(Image credit: Carpetright)

This white wood staircase design is anything but boring when paired with an on-trend shade of blush pink and rustic barn doors. 

5. Transform a Victorian Terrace Staircase with a Modern Treatment

traditional victorian staircase renovation

(Image credit: Carpetright)

Update a tired terrace staircase by painting in a contemporary shade of blue and adding an understated yet stunning grey runner. 

The perfect mix of traditional and modern, this staircase showcases everything that is special about the terrace house, while keeping it rooted in contemporary styles.

(MORE: 13 Renovated Terraced Homes Ideas

modern staircase design gallery

(Image credit: Boca de Lobo)

Carefully curating a gallery wall along a staircase takes patience but is endlessly rewarding. 

This monochrome scheme down the triple-storey spiral staircase beautifully links the floors together and displays the value in planning interior design right from the off.

7. Keep Costs Down by Renovating an Old Staircase 

staircase renovation ideas

(Image credit: Carpetright)

Unless there is something physically wrong with a staircase during a renovation project, many simply need some attention and can be rejuvenated by some TLC. 

This pared-back design is made all the more interesting by the dark stained wood handrail which draws the eye invitingly upstairs. 

Want to know how? Take a look at our guide on how to save an old staircase.

8. Make a Statement with a Pendent Light in a Staircase

Modern staircase ideas

(Image credit: Boca de Lobo)

Add a contemporary light fitting to instantly create wow-factor in a stairway.

This bespoke staircase is more like a sculpture or work of art in this modern home, complete with statement handrail and picture window to the outdoors.  

9. Create a Floating Glass Staircase

Modern wood and glass staircase ideas

(Image credit: Laurence Liddy)

Make an instant statement like self-build's clever timber and glass staircase design. 

Finished with a modern glass balustrade, the wooden steps to have the illusion of floating. The simple straight flight has a hidden steel stringer (the housing either side of the stairs) behind the stone-clad plasterboard which supports the whole structure.  

(MORE: Ultimate Guide to Self Build)

10. Let Timber Take the Lead

Timber staircase in modern home ideas

(Image credit: Urban Front)

The best modern staircase design let the materials speak for themselves — as this walnut structure demonstrates. 

The muted green of the front door and the polished concrete floors makes every element in this hallway sing. 

11. Add a Modern Central Staircase

Modern spiral staircase ideas

(Image credit: Bisca)

This central spiral staircase was designed for the homeowners to transition from the quirky open plan living space (below) to the more rustic basement floor. 

Thick treads made from ash are stacked to hide the usually visible central column which supports the structure. 

Modern staircase in home

(Image credit: Bisca)

12. Add a Contemporary Staircase to an Open-plan Space

Glass staircase in renovated house

(Image credit: Paul Arthur)

While this terrace house was renovated, the homeowners chose to open up the previously enclosed and dark staircase. The replaced it with a timber and glass structure which leads right to the open-plan living space. 

The glass baluster doesn't feature a handrail (Building Regulations in England don't require one), making the staircase less visible. 

13. Think Outside the Box to Work to a Budget

Plywood staircase idea

(Image credit: Simon Maxwell)

This steel and timber staircase was designed by the homeowner using CAD software. The ply balustrades were installed as a cost-saving measure while he raises funds for a laser-cut metal profile in the future. 

14. Contrast Wood and Metal for a Trendy Staircase Design

Wooden staircase ideas

(Image credit: Benjamin Moore UK)

Scandinavian-inspired pale woods matched with matt black finishes is one of the most popular styles in recent years. 

Here, simple and narrow balusters are beautifully complimented by oak treads and a stunning continuous handrail. 

15. Go Bold for an Industrial Staircase Outdoors

Industrial staircase idea

(Image credit: Simon Maxwell)

This bespoke steel staircase was designed to provide access from the open-plan living spaces down to the sleeping areas in the basement, while creating an industrial finish.

The open riser and mesh sheet balustrade design allows plenty of light in to make the downstairs spaces feel brighter.

16. Modernise a Traditional Staircase

Spiral staircase modernisation idea

(Image credit: David Barbour)

The spiral staircase in this renovated Victorian school house was modernised with a contemporary sage green. 

The rejuvenated  structure creates the perfect bridge between the history of the property and the it's new purpose to suit a modern family lifestyle. 

17. Go Big with a Modern Staircase Design

Gallery staircase with mezzanine

(Image credit: Jodi Stewart)

Leading gracefully down from a the new mezzanine area, the staircases either side of the kitchen area truly make an impact in this contemporary-styled barn conversion

Plus, the spandrel (the triangular space under the stairs) has been incorporated into the kitchen as extra storage. 

18. Keep it Simple to Make an Impact with a Modern Staircase

Timber and steel staircase in kitchen idea

(Image credit: Alan Williams c/o Merrett Houmøller Architects)

When designing this kitchen extension to a terrace property, Merrett Houmøller Architects kept a simple pallet of materials throughout the spaces. 

The result is a dramatic black steel staircase which takes centre-stage in the double-height space.

19. Add a Splash of Colour to a Contemporary Staircase

Glass staircase ideas

(Image credit: Jodi Stewart)

The simple glass and white painted timber staircase of this barn conversion has been accompanied by on-trend bold colours and styles to really make the feature come alive. 

20. Complete a Contemporary Staircase with Finishing Touches

Glass modern staircase ideas

(Image credit: David Barbour)

Floor-to-ceiling glazing and concealed lighting make this staircase really stand out. 

21. Create an Air of Elegance with a Modern Staircase

Modern staircase in kitchen

(Image credit: Simon Maxwell)

When building an extension to their cottage in the Cotswolds, the homeowners decided to relocate their old staircase.  

Making the most of their new vaulted ceiling, the charming oak stairway now matches the kitchen (and includes valuable storage) while a mural adds delicately detailed decoration. 

22. Get Creative to Make a Modern Staircase Work Harder

Modern staircase with storage below

(Image credit: Jeremy Phillips)

Oversized balustrades, a gentle winder design and a deep navy steel structure mean this staircase packs a punch. 

Plus, freestanding, colourful storage below with a DIY peg board creates a a handy place to kick off coats before heading upstairs.