Stained Basic Oak Banisters Classic Black

We moved into our 3 story townhouse almost 6 months ago. We have a lot of boring oak banisters that you can see from the front door looking in. I had the house painted Simply White by Benjamin Moore and wanted a more updated look and love a little contrast. Usually it’s navy and white, but I did not want to paint them navy…Here is an inspiration photo to help me get started on my renovation.

 Inspiration photo

Inspiration photo

I read a bunch of different blog posts found on Pinterest, and I decided to go with Minwax PolyShades stain in Classic Black Satin finish instead of paint. The ease of use was the biggest draw, plus I love the woodgrain that you can see through instead of brush strokes you get with paint.

 Minwax PolyShades in Classic Black Satin

Minwax PolyShades in Classic Black Satin

I went to Lowes, picked up my can, a foam brush, a 1” bristle brush, painters tape, and got to town. A couple of hours, then out to dinner with friends, then back to work for a couple more hours before I went to bed. I started Saturday night, worked on it most of the day Sunday, and finished up second coats on Monday night after work! With as many banisters that we have, I am thrilled that I got this project done as quickly as I did. I’m not going to lie, it can be a little bit messy. I do have a few black drip lines on my white paint, and on my white spindles that I need to touch up. We hare going to have new wood floors and update our stairs as well, so I figured that if I might make a mess, now if the time to do it! I am so glad I did.

While I was getting started, I tried simply brushing on over the exiting varnish, it was OK, but not absorbing the stain as I wanted it to. I heard from a friend that you don’t need to sand, so I tried it that way. The first banister that I did not sand took 3 full coats. I decided to sand all the rest of the banisters and it was smooth sailing with only two coats to create a really beautiful black finish.

black banister
black banister 2

Feel free to comment or as any questions if this is a type of project you’d like to take on. I’ll be sharing more photos of my renovations and designs down the line.

Sincerely,

Lauren McCombs