Installing the Stairs & Framing in the Office

Hello? Is this thing on?

It’s been awhile, huh? Did you miss us?! 😀

We are SO excited to share what has kept us busy the past few weeks.

If you’re following us on Instagram, you’ve caught a few sneak peeks of the stairs and office/panty/closet but today we wanted to show it all off.

If you remember, here’s where we started:

And this is what it looks like today:

The header.

There is a header running the entire length of our house in the basement. We knew it was there because we’d seen it in places where there wasn’t a wall.

After Brett tore out the window wall (pictured above), he discovered the header was NOT one big, long piece but several smaller sections pieced together. This is not ideal, but after much back-and-forth, actually worked in our favor.

The red posts supporting the header were installed where the pieces came together. What we had to do was remove the post and the header and install new posts and new headers to correlate with where the stairs were going to be.

This involved putting temporary studs to support the entire house, quick maneuvering between the Brett, myself and my parents and some major praying that nothing would go wrong.

I am happy to report that the house is still standing, we were able to get the old out and new in without any hiccups!

The stairs.

When I posted our 2018 plans, we were planning on having an ‘L’ shaped staircase.

Plans changed when we realized there wouldn’t be enough room to clear our heads at the landing. In the basement, there is a brick wall that limited our options so we ended up having to reconfigure the entire staircase.

how to install stairs, basement stairs

The result?

basement stairs

A ‘T’ staircase, with a landing option of going to the right or left.

wood basement stairs

Off to the right is going to be a little office area for Brett and then lead into his archery lane. To the left will be the living/rec room and bar. Underneath the stairs will be storage and the back room will be all for Brett’s hunting gear.

how to build basement stairs

The office, linen closet and pantry.

Once we realized the stairs needed to move, a little reconfiguring of the linen closet and office had to happen.

The closet will now be housed to the left of the staircase, with half being the linen closet and the other half opening up to the office.

ripping out drywall in a home

For the pantry, we’re mulling over the idea of splitting it in half as well. With the front portion being the pantry and the back being the walk-in shower for our master bath or the bathroom closet. Decisions, decisions!

removing drywall and exposed wall studs

The other hiccup with the pantry is that the door cuts into the kitchen cabinets.

wall studs for a closet

What I think we’ll have to do is remove one set of cabinets and move everything down in order to fit the door opening. Since we aren’t quite ready to do an entire kitchen renovation, we’ll have to hodge-podge it together and make do!

What’s next?

Besides the obvious, we’re currently in the process of rewiring all the lighting and/or adding new lights.

Once that is finished, it’s time to put up the drywall.

I have the goal of aligning the office reno with the spring One Room Challenge, but if we can get it done earlier than that, even better!

We’re hoping to be in a place with everything usable by the time spring rolls around and we’re ready to start the garage. Thankfully (?) we’re in Minnesota so that shouldn’t be until May or June 😉

Since pictures can only take us so far and not all of you are on Instagram, I’ve compiled all the stories/updates we’ve shared over there in a video format. Hopefully this will help tie it all together for you 😊

Until next time!

All our best,


About North Country Nest

Hi, we're Brett & Kelly! We're tackling our first home renovation and would love for you to join us on our journey of reno projects, DIYs and home decor tips.

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