Carpeting the Stairway!

The Things We Do for Our Dogs!

It's time to face facts - time marches on, and oh so much faster for our four-legged friends.  Such is the case here at 173.  Linus has begun to grow old (some would just say he is old), he can't hear anymore, he's lost teeth, and (much like me) his joints have gotten a little stiff.  

Sometime over the summer Linus was going down the stairs and I heard him fall and slide all the way to the bottom.  I jumped up and ran to him and he seemed unhurt, and to be more clear, he was indeed unhurt.  However, when I wanted him to go back up the stairs, it took some coaxing with a treat (Beagles will sit on a ledge in the 7th ring of hell for even a morsel of a treat), but he did go back up.  Since then, he's been very, very careful going down the steps.

I also noticed since maybe early in the spring Linus has been a little stiff-legged in on the kitchen floor, to the point that I could notice his feet slipping laterally as he walked.  Linus had his physical a few weeks back, and besides the Vet complimenting him on how laid back he is, Linus was declared to be in good shape - for a senior dog.  I hate that clause - for a senior dog.  Good grief it makes me think of the day some doctor, unaware of what's about to happen to him or her, will gleefully announce I'm in good shape - for my age.  I fear he or she will be of a sudden disabused of the notion to utter that clause in the future.  Here's Linus - a senior Beagle (harrumph)...

Some totally unsponsored links
Callaway by Milliken - Covington in Grasscloth
Stainmaster Carpet Critique
A history of carpeting
You might also like the Kitchen Floor Install

A Solution

So, while not a fan of a lot of carpeting (rugs seem to be better for 173), a rug on the stairs made so much sense.  It had been under consideration for quite some time, the risk of Linus falling again helped the decision to be made.  One flooring store, one hour, lotsa samples and a phone call later, a decision was made!  And here it is, center of the bottom row:

The problem is, the color has been almost impossible to capture, but it's a medium green and gray called "Grasscloth."  it's relatively neutral and understated, while at the same time eye catching.  But we'll get to that.  

The Product

First, a bit of housekeeping to catalog for 173's record, here's the specs:

Besides the color, look and design, I think the real attractive part of this carpet is that it's on the high end of the durability spectrum!

As corny as this may sound, the green carpet is the natural compliment to the walls, which are painted Sherwin Williams' Lily!  See what I did there?  Green (leaves), yellow (Lily).  Yup - I'm that guy who tells a joke then explains it.


After ordering the carpet, it took a couple weeks until a guy from the carpet place came to measure for installation.  I've said many times over the years that some things are best just leaving to the professionals.  Carpeting stairs is one such time.  It's not just that the carpet pad and the carpet itself needs to be taut, or that the carpet needs to be properly measured and aligned.  No, it's all these things and more, not the least of which is properly measuring and aligning the pie-shaped steps (yep, that's what they called them) with the width of the rest of the stairs.  Oh, it just looked so complicated! 

A couple weeks after ordering the carpet, the store sent an installer to measure each step, figure out the angles of the pie-shaped steps, and figure out the alignment and width of the steps and the bottom landing.  I'm sure I noticed this before, but if I did it was a long time ago - the last few steps at the top of the stairs after coming around the corner are a few inches narrower than the main portion of the stairs.  Doesn't mean much except I'm glad I didn't have to figure all that aligning!

If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur. Red Adair


After the carpet store got the carpet in, the measurements done, and the edges banded - it was finally time for installation.  It seemed like it was a long time from ordering to this day, but in reality it was a matter of maybe 6 weeks.  And quite frankly, it didn't matter anyway because I had the advantage of working from home because of the pandemic, so arranging an appointment was no problem at all! I tried to stay out of the installers way, but I did get a couple pictures.  After all - there's a blog to consider!  Here he is getting started at the bottom landing...

In this picture there's a few things to notice.  Here you can see how the stairs turn with the pie-shaped steps.  Also, you can see the padding that was installed under the carpet.  My whole life I heard that one should never skimp on the padding - so there was no skimping!  Finally, in this shot you get the first real peak at the carpet itself.  I think this shot is the closest I've been able to get in capturing the color.

It didn't take long for the guy to install the carpet, maybe an hour and a half, something that probably would have taken me a couple weeks!

This shot also shows a couple things.  First, it's a good example of how the ambient light and even the camera angle can present the carpet in differing shades of green, from almost hunter green to a kind of silvery green.  The other thing in this shot is the matching hallway runner.  After the carpet was measured and all, it turns out there were several square feet left  over.  The guy asked if they should make runners and of course I assented - and the only thing to be paid was for the edge banding!

Here's an angle that shows a closer view of the edge banding.  They did a great job matching the green - not that you can really tell in the pictures!  

The downstairs runner from the stairs...

And here's look from the living room - again the green shows as a different shade!

Oh - did I mention there was enough leftover to make runners for both down and upstairs?  This shot really shows how the camera captures different shades/colors!

As much as I've harped on the color/shading in the pictures, know this - in reality the color is seamless and I am really just lamenting my photography skills!

So now, 173 has carpeted stairs for the first time since 1997!  And you know what?  Linus is up and down the stairs with the same agility and confidence as he did not too many years ago!  

Stay safe out there!

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