One of the great joys of life here at British Spirals & Castings is that you never know which near or far flung location the next order may come from. Every year we ship staircases, railings and balconies to clients right across the globe. Recently we had a chance to revisit a Victorian spiral staircase which made it all the way to the Golden State when the owner kindly sent us some pictures.
When Lisa Flippo and her family first purchased a period style bungalow in Morgan Hill, a small-town south of Silicon Valley, they knew they had a challenge on their hands. The house had been abandoned some years prior and had to be completely remodelled. After ten years enjoying their revitalised property, they decided to undertake another major renovation, this time expanding the building from around 100 m2 to almost 550 m2. This process threw up a few challenges, particularly in the open plan Family Room, as Lisa explained:
‘The Family Room in our home is a two storey open beamed ceiling with a game room/pool table loft that is situated over the kitchen. We did not have much space for stairs, so I had this idea to put up a spiral staircase. I looked at a couple of options in the States but everything was modern and not the style we were looking for.
Our home is a little bit farmhouse, a little bit Tuscan villa and a lot just “home”. I somehow found my way to British Spirals & Castings and fell absolutely in love with the Victorian cast iron stairs and railings. It just adds more character to the room.’
The Victorian spiral staircase is one of our most popular cast aluminium products. The decorative appearance is ideal for period style homes and its three balusters per tread design reduces the gap between balusters to less than 100 mm, keeping users safe.
Of course, each of our staircases are customised to the owner’s unique specifications. For this spiral staircase, we included a 60 degree landing plate and elaborate finials on the underside corner of each tread. Perhaps the most notable design choice, however, was the walnut handrail and intricate cast metal railings. These run the length of the staircase and across the loft balcony – perfectly matching the oak panelling installed on the rest of the loft façade.
We stayed in close contact with the owners throughout to ensure the staircase was everything they had imagined when it arrived. Our cast aluminium staircases are far lighter than traditional cast iron whilst still retaining the same strength. With that said, any large metal staircase will carry some weight as Lisa discovered:
‘It was quite comical getting stairs up. WOW… they were heavy! My husband, who is a builder, and his employees installed it but we all contributed to holding it in place while the steps were lowered down the pole and then the last piece was attached to the landing on the loft floor. It was actually an experience to remember.
The quality of the product is flawless. Everyone who has come into our house over the past 12 years has admired and commented on the staircase. We love the UK and feel like we have a little bit of it in our home that we get to enjoy every day.’
At British Spirals & Castings, we have been designing and manufacturing bespoke staircases and balconies since 1980. We pride ourselves on our ability to handcraft all our designs to match each customer’s exact requirements, and embrace the challenge of creating products which truly reflect the character of the homes they will be installed in.