Tiled Staircases

By Kate Riley June 7, 2016

Hey everyone! This week I’m working hard on the house we’re renovating, I’m also taking a few hours between jobs to soak up the sun since this is the official first week of summer for me. I’m making a list of future projects and one I’m dying to complete is to remove the carpet on the stairs in this entry and replace it with wood treads and tile risers, I absolutely love the look.

Years ago I photographed beautiful Spanish tiled staircases in Santa Barbara on a coastal California road trip. There in that amazing beach destination you’ll spy tiled staircases all around the town, in the hotels and also in residential bungalows.

Tiled staircases are always at home in a Mediterranean or Mission style home, however it’s a detail that can enhance other styles as well as the images below reveal.

 patterned tile staircase

weglarz design

 green moroccan tiled staircase

project inspo

 tile staircase

my domaine

 tiled risers

camille stiles

 blue tiled staircase


 brown and white tiled staircase wood treads

brown design inc

 spanish style tiled risers

norman design group

The tile on the risers need not be traditional as this staircase demonstrates with its modern herringbone mosaic.

 herringbone tiled staircase

mike schaap builders

With patience and a steady hand, the look can be achieved with stencils.

 stenciled stair risers


You can also mimic the look with strips of wallpaper like with this clever application.

 tiled wallpapered staircase


Another easy way to decorate your stair risers is with removable decals. Several online shops offer removable tile lookalike decals to get the look without the cost or labor of actual tiles.

 blue and white tile decals on staircase


 Three more sources on Etsy:

tile staircase decals

decoskins / stickdecor / alegria

I’ll be back on Friday with another roundup, see you then!



  1. Oo i love the idea of the decals! My aunt has just done hers in carpet and wood and looks lovely. At least with decals the cost is lower if you change your mind!!

    Rachael xox


  2. I LOVE this idea and the look of it so much! Definitely on the list of DIY’s when I get my own house someday.

  3. I am not a fan but I’d like to see how you’d pull it off as I love everything you touch! Convert me ;)

  4. Similar effect–I painted the risers of my wood tread staircase a deep blue (SW Smoky Blue). The staircase is visible from foyer/living room; color ties the spaces together.

  5. Beautiful! We have a Santa Fe home. Do you have any recommendations for what to put on the stairs (not the risers where the tiles go) that would be safe. We were thinking of a full runner but the tiling is so beautiful. Just don’t want to slip and fall tho. Thx!!!

  6. Any ideas on what to put on the stair area to prevent someone from slipping?

      • Thx Kate…Your stairs look great! But i’m really in love w the tile look…just need to put something on the surface of the stairs to prevent slipping. P

  7. Oh, Mediterranean style is my favourite! This is such a beautiful inspiration! I love all those stairs <3


  8. Not a huge fan of tales apart from the kitchen and bathroom floor, but the brown design inc one just stole my heart!

  9. Love the inspo photos. While we lived in the historic Old Rosedale Gardens neighborhood in Livonia, MI, I wanted to “spruce up” the cement stairs toward the front porch by inserting beautiful, local tiles from Pewabic Pottery in Detroit. We moved back to Illinois and my idea did not come to fruition.

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