People associate glass with fragility, so they don’t consider it to be a viable material for decorating, much less structural applications. Glass is very good at keeping secrets, one of which is that it can be used in a variety of architectural applications, including floors, bridges and staircases!
What goes into a glass staircase?
Glass staircases can incorporate glass into the railings, but glass can also be used to create the treads – the business side of a staircase! Chemical treatment, tempering and laminating glass can make the glass strong enough to stand up to the demands placed on staircases. These treatments are so effective in strengthening the glass that staircases made of glass can be nearly 10 feet wide! At that width, glass staircases can be incorporated safely and easily into both residential and commercial spaces.
Glass staircases can be straight, curved or helical and can incorporate a variety of materials. They can also be made entirely of glass, or surrounded by glass. Any part of the staircase can be made of glass – including the stringers and treads. Typically, glass staircases don’t have risers. (Technically, they’re not necessary.) Some of the most dramatic glass staircases are cantilevered, which means the treads project directly from the support wall and appear to have no other support. Cantilevered stairs usually have no railing on the open side, although for safety reasons, they may have a railing attached to the support wall, giving the appearance of an “open” staircase.
Glass staircases are exceptionally elegant, and appear to “float” upward. Because the major elements of the staircase are transparent, designers can employ a number of lighting effects to change the appearance of the staircase. They blend seamlessly into any color scheme, and are at home in any modern design.
In addition to being “painted” with light, glass staircases can be painted with paint! Designers can use Glassprimer™ glass paint to create colored, opaque, translucent and frosted effects that complement the décor of any home or business. If you’d like more information about decorating with glass paint, please check out the rest of our site. If you’d like to purchase Glassprimer™ glass paint, please visit our online store .
Photo Credit: A C, via Flickr.com