Published on November 17, 2018

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Courtesy of Bien Fait

There is something to be said for a wallpaper pattern that can play to a wide variety of styles and decorative preferences. Regardless of where you find them—be it in a restaurant, hallway, or the bedroom—the versatility of these prints invite a multi-dimensional detail to the space they embody.

Patterned wallpaper provides the decorator with the opportunity to embrace a wider spectrum of colors within a concentrated space. Once deemed intimidating, unexpected color pairings, suddenly feel approachable thanks to the small doses they are presented in. This, in turn, leads to a statement-worthy finish that has the power to transform even the most tired spaces.

With that in mind, we turned to an overlooked area of a home that is, more often than not, a decorative after-thought commonly void of color or personality: the stairs. Regardless of structure or size, something as simple as wallpaper can transform the area into a high-impact design moment. We scoured our arsenal of well-designed homes to see how they managed to transform the stairs into a focal point in their own right. See for yourself.

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Deconstructed Stripe Wallpaper by Miles Redd Schumacher | Mia Baxter

If you have any reservations about adopting a black-and-white scheme, allow this stunning stairway to serve as proof that the palette is timeless. Here, a graphic pattern is overlayed atop a tonal pairing to create a trendy motif that reinvents the classic base.

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Photography by Laure Joliet

Annabel Mehran’s dreamy LA home has no shortage of color but the painted garden mural in the stairwell is definitely a standout moment. For the bold-minded, take note from Mehran and bring in an all-encompassing wallpaper to transform your space with dramatic flair.

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Bahamas, Bien Fait | Courtesy of Bien Fait

This isn’t your standard botanical print. Florals that are as vibrant and grand in scale as this do more than just lend a pop of color to the standard whitewashed space. They attract a whimsical decorative quality yet still maintains an artful and contemporary feel.  

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Photography by Jessica Antola

It’s all about the subtlety in design with this graphically-muted wallpaper. The seemingly pared-down print is anything but bland, providing an otherwise whitewashed backdrop with an added element of interest.

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Rifle Paper Co. for Hygge & West | Photography by Michael Wiltbank

Not all staircases are created equal and this creative’s Brooklyn home is all the proof you need. Consider paneling the space between each step with wallpaper to add an unexpected pop of color and pattern.

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Shouchikubai by Farrow & Ball | Courtesy of Farrow and Ball

Think of wallpaper as a way to give any space a timely or design-forward update. Here, a once rustic hall is reinvented courtesy of the bold splash of color and intricate qualities of the paper’s pattern.

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Miami by Cole & Son | Courtesy of Wallpaper Direct

No area of a home is too small or insignificant to make a bold statement with, and the walls lining this staircase are certainly proof. Bring in an intricate pattern for a visually-rich composition that’ll instantly reinvent even the most drab of entries.