a year or so ago we worked really hard to pull together this lovely dining room.
house in the ‘burbs
.. a couple wall anchors, hooks and screws and it was up.
and that’s my story.
i’d like to give a shout out to my loving husband who goes along with my weird ideas and to the guy at home depot who walked us around the store showing me various pipe and dowel options and didn’t bat an eye when i told him it was for holding up a rug.
hi. i’m back.. the past 1.5 months have been… challenging… wonderful… exhausting.
i go through phases. i think i’ve mentioned this before. some mornings i’ll drink a coffee and feel this overwhelming surge of creative energy where i have to paint something or clean up part of a room to take pictures or surf pinterest aimlessly. other times it all feels so… stupid. for lack of a better word, its sort of stupid to take photos of rooms in your house and put them on the internet when you have a million more important things to do. and even when i don’t, sometimes i just don’t feel it. when i’m super busy at work (lately) or stressed about time, money, schedules (lately as well) i can’t find the energy to chit chat about washi tape and glitter. at the same time, deep down, i love this stuff and wish i could keep the ball rolling here on my little interweb.
not to mention i lost my camera battery charger for a week or two again then found it over the weekend in a very obvious place. OY.
so here we go- here is how the basement tv area has shaped up so far. pardon the glare on the tv screen, its bad.
so the rug and the cool rocking chair are from amazon (affiliate links on my side bar shopping list thingy >>>)
shakey still doesn’t love it down here. ok, he hates it and we basically have to carry him down the stairs. its going to be the coolest place to hang out this summer, so we need to figure out a way to change his mind.
these side tables are target gems.
he’s had a lot of fun down here already! there is zero organization or order or plan for either, but we are more than ok with that.
we got the upgraded cabinet doors back on the built-ins just in time for dane’s party.
when our contractor left, they were in need of some serious attention.
i wanted to add texture, but keep it white and simple. here is my inspiration —
the rest of the shelves are not quite presentable yet. i do not plan on making a big fuss about the “styling” or spending more than a few dollars on fluff for them, but i would like to put a little effort toward a little “reveal” for the memory books… potentially i can work around my TWO bridal showers and make it a weekend project!
here are the much-more-welcoming stairs —
the almost-done built-ins–
for which we found a way to make these glorious ikea ranarp clamp spotlights work. these things were $20 each!–
the lower cabinet doors are still in progress–
i decided to leave the back of the built-ins as-is. the wood grain is so beautiful, it was a no-brainer. we are still researching the best way to seal/protect the wood–
these pictures were taken after work one evening… 6ish? and there is still a decent flow of natural light through the doors–
this is one of the better photos in terms of true paint color and minimal fill-light used in my editing. and look at the pretty ceiling–
our treadmill will go over here–
behind these double doors is unfinished work/storage space–
that’s a wrap!
dane had a tough run of sniffles and fevers the past couple weeks, but he is so much better now and rearing to go for his family birthday party this weekend.
the final, outsourced piece of our finished basement puzzle is happening tomorrow. then we are done… and if we’re not done, we are on. our. own.
we made such a last minute rug choice a few months back, that i don’t even have a picture of the sample we picked. i thought we were going with a grey industrial carpet, but then we changed our minds right before decision time to a fuller, softer, salt-and-peppery-colored berber. we had empire come give us a quote first. then we met with the local guy recommended by our contractor. if his price was anywhere close, we really preferred to give our business to local guy. it was close. better, even. so we called empire to cancel and get our deposit back (because you know, you only get that “really special price” if you book the installation and give them a deposit that same day…) empire of course promised to beat the competitor’s price, but we said, no thanks, and felt good about giving local guy the job.
anyway, i have a special treat for you today. a guest blogger. i’m going to let shakespeare tell the rug choosing story since he was very involved in the process.
take it away shakey…
hi. i’m shakespeare and i’m 4.
i spend a lot of time with my bully body on rugs, so i was pleased when my mom & dad asked me to help pick one out for our new basement, which, quite frankly, i find terrifying. i am not messing around with those scary, uncarpeted stairs.
at any rate…. we had a lot of choices..
at first they agreed. i thought this grey rug and i would grow old together…
slowly, the built-ins are looking a little more built and a little more in. the most notable update is the chunky wood frame around the fireplace.
and now after our neighbor framed it with some pine floor boards he had left over from a previous project. it will really highlight the fireplace once everything (especially doors on either side) is/are painted.
what to do with the back of the shelves is keeping me up at night… stephanie 6 months ago would be painting it all a bold, contrasting color for sure. but stephanie today is way more into white, neutral, natural.. and speaking in the third person.
here are a couple of my favorite built-in pins. are they telling me to paint that back wall blue/grey?
let’s flash back to when we first bought the house. can you believe it? this red wall makes no sense. the built-in white tv window-thing is oddly off-center and.. my gosh these colors.. also please note the closet door to the left that was just chopped off at the bottom. this is something..
and new hardware. stat.
ok, i’m just going to show you pictures. i started to try to write words, but its not happening. work has been so busy and my brain is too mushy to string together large groups of words.
star light is in.
built-ins are built.
they need a few finishing touches and a lot of paint, but getting there.
one of aforementioned finishing touches is figuring out how to make these lights work..
ceiling also needs a lot of paint. but is basically done and is awesome.
last monday we spent the holiday painting. the walls are benjamin moore revere pewter. its a warm grey. i worried it was too dark, but i think it will be ok once the ceiling and trim all have fresh coats of white.
here’s a little diy project mike is not looking forward to. we are tiling around the door to save the future carpet from entry traffic and, god forbid, leakage from this door.
we’ve enlisted dane to help with the painting. we are desperate. he has mastered pretend rolling the floor, so that’s helpful (teaser on a little wall art project here. don’t worry, we will not be hanging spoons anywhere).
peace out red.
what a difference some paint can make!
we need to paint the railing. what do you think, white? black? dark stain?
in the planning stages we made a list of needs, wants, and would-be-nices. a ventless gas fireplace to cozy things up was in the would-be-nice category. the more the idea marinated, the more we decided we really wanted it and should invest in it now while everything is being ripped apart and put back together. how glorious is this set-up below? you would never know you’re in a basement.
we researched and shopped and discussed with our contractor and the all-in price tag for the fireplace would be somewhere in the ungodly neighborhood of 6k-8k (for the unit, the gas line, the labor, etc etc). absolutely out of the question. we were sad. then we thought outside the box and researched electric fireplaces. sounds lame and fake, but after seeing some of the technology out there, it was clear that we could get the same warm, cozy glow for way way way less with one of these units that plugs right into an outlet.
we wanted an insert to go inside the built-in unit. we kept coming back to this same dimplex model.
i like the “linear” look (as its called in the industry). at 50″ long, it will really make a statement in the unit under the tv. the going rate for these is about $1400. not cheap, but not $8k either. it was doable. i shopped around (these are sold by a number of vendors). and bought one on sale with an additional 5% off (and free shipping).
Sales Tax: $0.00
i was pretty pleased with myself. funny how looking at the cost of the gas version made this feel like a steal (while it is really still so much $$!).
the guys are working on this now, so when i am back from vacation, i should be able to show you how it becomes a reality!
by the way, if any burglars are reading, my sister will be house sitting all week with our fierce bulldog. and she has guns.
oh god am i going to miss this pup.
1. lighting 2. ceiling 3. fireplace
i felt strongly about the ceiling for the basement since day 1. i wanted to avoid a dropped ceiling at all costs. maybe you didn’t know about the self discovery involved with finishing a basement .. I discovered that my hatred for dropped ceiling tiles runs deep.
after some pinteresting and houzzing, i decided i needed to have beadboard… something like this.
it took a couple weeks of work.. plumbers, electricians, etc, dealing with heat ducts and wiring up there, but finally the ceiling panels are going up. first was the “strapping”..
obviously a lot of painting will be happening after the ceiling is fully intact. you have to use your imagination a little, but i’m liking what i’m seeing.
as you can tell we are creeping toward a finished product. so much work to do before anything is “pretty”, but the heavy lifting is almost done! a carpet and a mother load of paint will make a world of difference. (you are all invited to the painting party. i’m serious.)
the final task for the contractor is the built-in shelving/entertainment center. basically the heart of the room. my head is spinning with ideas, you have no idea!