This was no small job. I had to sand, stain, poly, prime, and paint to achieve a finish product. Here is the before:
I really wish I had documented this all with better pictures. It was very apparent how bad these railings looked when they were right next to the floor.
Here's how the hard work paid off:
In detail, I sanded everything, and did a very through job on the railing as I planned on restaining. I stained the railing with Minwax's Ebony stain (2 coats), then put another 2 coats of Minwax high gloss poly on, and sanded with steel wool in between coats.
Next, I primed the posts with two coats of white Behr primer, and finally gave the posts two coats of semi-gloss Behr ultra-white to match the rest of the trim in my home that has been recently painted. Here's the view of the family room railing:
Oooo0h it is sooo muuuch better! It's like the frosting on the cake. One more pic of the living room railing(still need to touch up the wall paint - don't look):
I also now have all of the materials I need to remake that ugly light box from the old kitchen into a headboard, I just have to get up the guts to go out to my 20 something degree garage to work on it, uuuugggh! I know I'm a spoiled brat.;)
I linked this post up to several sites...take a look! There is so much creativity out there! L.O.V.E. it!