The Basement: From Drastic to Fantastic

Before: a dark, eerie room cluttered with decades of dust, dirt, and despair.

Before: a hole below our house, completely unfinished and utterly untouched.

Before: useless junk everywhere, now blocking every step of one’s way.

…Seriously. There was so much stuff that it was literally impossible to move down there.

Our half-basement was the definition of a nightmare. Not only was it messy and outdated, but it became a rectangle of dysfunctional space that it lost all intention as a true living area. After years of crawling over random crates and looking at the dull mauve carpet, we decided it was time to take action and get our basement back!

For any remodeling project, consider the purpose and mood of the room. What do you want to do in it? How would you like others to feel when they enter? Which furniture and décor pieces would enhance both? Picture yourself using the space and begin from there.

With our basement, we wanted to combine the ideas of living, laundry, and storage together, and agreed to open up the area so all could be accomplished. A wall of paneling split the basement in half, and removing this alone opened up two and a half feet of space. It doesn’t seem like much, but by doing so, the effect was huge!

On the direct opposite side of the paneled barrier was another wall that suffered a foundation leak which had to be fixed, causing us to consider the bowed wall of concrete that also needed to be reconfigured. The drop ceiling composed of foam tiles was promptly discarded to instead expose the natural beams. We were surprised by how much room there was!

We sorted through old toys, appliances, and furniture to determine what was worth keeping. Anything broken or unnecessary was thrown away or donated to charity. Three cubicles of shelves hiding behind the removed paneled wall were converted into three small closets—perfect to store holiday decorations, tools, and other belongings. Two other metal racks were moved around to organize our cleaning supplies in the laundry room.

Because we wanted the living area to be bright and cheery, we decided on a soft ivory paint by Behr to coat the remaining dark brown paneling. White trim framed the well window and doors. Deep oak-colored wood vinyl was set for flooring, and a faux brick feature wall was placed over the bowed concrete—both of which were selected from Home Depot.

Old furniture pieces were made to appear new, which included covering our current couch with a Sure-Fit sofa cover. Two Room & Board chairs in excellent condition were purchased from Craigslist. Finally, we added a coffee table and utilized a dresser from Goodwill as an entertainment center for our board games and television. Two light blue ottomans were arranged beside our vanilla sofa, and pillows, drapes, an ivory shag rug, and candles in shades of green, teal, and gold added a touch of elegance to the room. All accessories were found at Walmart, Kohl’s, and Home Goods.

What do you think of our basement transformation? Leave us a comment below—we’d love to hear from you!

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.

Showcasing a basement/living area remodel with new furniture, paint, and indoor décor.


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