Traditionally stairs have been a practical element in the home primarily used to get from one floor to another. Imbuing the clients’ personality or program requirements into a utilitarian space is part of what creating a truly custom home entails. Curvaceous steel, transparent treads, floating steps, and concealed storage are just a few of the inventive twists added to these stairwell designs.

Although architects and designers envision the spectacular elements, the builders, engineers, carpenters, and fabricators are the real heroes in these projects. They must devise perfect calculations for tolerances, strength, safety codes, comfort, and more while also generating innovative support systems and crafting materials into uncommon forms. For example, one three-story, solid steel spiral stair had to be craned into an existing row house while another glass staircase and bridge was suspended from the ceiling to enhance the ethereal effect.

This collection of stairwells showcases how innovative design coupled with crafts people who go above-and-beyond can put the fun in functional.