Amazing Staircases / Gone with the Wind: The Bridal Curved Staircase
The 1939 film "Gone With The Wind" features four beautiful staircases that have come to define the elegance, grace and grandeur of interior stair design. The most amazing staircase in the film is without question the massive central staircase within the Twelve Oaks Plantation. This is the stair that most people refer to as the Gone With The Wind “Bridal Curved Stair”. The staircase begins at the first floor with a bowed starting tread approximately 20 ft. wide featuring circle ends with descending volute rail terminations directly above. The lower section of the stair is a "flared" design with curves on both sides that allow the stair to narrow as you ascend the first 12 treads to the intermediate landing. At the landing, the stair divides into two 90 degree curved sections that ascend another 20 treads to the second floor. The handrail is a Victorian design approx. 7" wide, possibly made from Walnut, and the balusters are square top and bottom, approx. 2 1/2" wide with alternating spiral cut turnings. The overall stair design is essentially three different staircases all perfectly joined at the central landing. The handrail winds uninterrupted from the top to the bottom an estimated 50 ft. in length on either side. Most of the staircase is open underneath with fantastic panel work attached to the stair backs, and the exposed stringers are detailed with brackets featuring floral rosettes and carved appliqués in a painted finish. The entire staircase was built on a sound stage in Hollywood and torn down as soon as filming was completed. The staircase was designed by Lyle Wheeler who won an Academy Award for his design work on the 90 sets and 50 full size buildings used in the movie. See more amazing staircases.