Decorating the basement felt like a whole different ball game than decorating the rest of the house. Who will ever know that it doesn’t have the same design style as the rest of the house, right? I decided to have a little fun; break all the design rules!
Let’s Start At The Beginning
Before we moved to Canada, basements were things we’d only heard of on TV shows and we were very excited to finally experience them for ourselves.
We soon learned that it is mainly in the colder regions where people convert their basements into extra living space. I’ve heard from my friend in the warmer parts of the US that they either don’t have basements or consider them to be creepy dungeons where they prefer not to set foot.
When we moved into our home, the basement was insulated but unfinished.
It looked like this, minus the stack of sheet rock panels. Those were hauled in here because we boldly and bravely decided to design and remodel this area ourselves, without any experience!
That is a story for another post, I just had to set the scene and explain why this space is like our baby! I will write a complete post showing the design and layout. If you are too curious to wait, these are the rooms/areas you can read about:
The Coffee Bar (originally called the dry bar)
Creating The Basement Living Area
This is how our informal living area looked after framing, drywalling, the subfloor, and the electrical work were completed.
With the walls painted, lighting and carpet installed, and everything trimmed out, we moved the television, couches, and a few odd pieces of furniture down to create a family room.
How exciting to finally be able to use a space we created from scratch! We spend most evenings down here, all cozied up.
The sad truth to this story? I never finished decorating this space! It has been looking like this for nearly two years. Last week, I finally got my act together and made this space REALLY cozy and appealing.
If you are still reading, thank you! This was probably the longest intro ever!
Decorating the Basement Living Area
At best, a basement can be a cold, dark, and dreary space. I had to pull out all the stops to get things cozy in here! Remember when I mentioned breaking design rules and having fun? I went crazy with pattern and wall decor, creating gallery walls in plural!
Gallery Wall Number One
As you enter the basement living area, this is the first wall to your left.
I painted this sideboard that belonged to one of my grandmothers while we were hanging drywall in the basement. I wrote about it in my post Decorating with Vintage Finds.
As you might know, if you want to create a curated look, never buy all your decor and/or furniture from the same place. Well, that rule went out the window with this gallery wall! All these pieces are from Michael’s. You might recognize them from their fall collection last year.
When I saw this collection, it had a lot of elements I envisioned for this space. Decorating with a theme in mind is usually reserved for children’s rooms but we are having fun here, remember? Since we live in the foothills of the Rockies, why not stretch the imagination a bit further and decorate the basement to have the cozy vibes of a mountain cabin? Are you seeing my vision yet?
A Mountain Cabin Needs a Fireplace
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you already know we are all about making the most of what you have, repurposing, and stretching the budget as far as possible. Decorating the basement was no exception.
A built-in fireplace was too big an expense for our budget-friendly remodel. The tv stand/cabinet houses a little electric fireplace that may not be the real thing, but it does create cozy vibes, and boy does it warm up this space!
Do you recognize this vintage trunk? I showed how I restored it and gave it a new look in my previous post. It is the perfect storage container for all our throw blankets.
You can see two more decor pieces from the Michael’s fall range, together with a very sentimental poster I’ve had for many years on this wall. I should write a post about the sweet story behind this poster!
Adding curtains, throw pillows, and a bit of faux fur takes the coziness level several notches up!
Redecorating The Coffee Bar
Yes, I decided to change the original look. We didn’t need shelves after all. Let me show you the before and after photos together.
It’s not a dramatic change but I do like this look better. Don’t you agree?
I saved the best for last! Or maybe, it’s just my favorite, but it is SO good!
Gallery Wall Number Two
Disclaimer: The five posters and frames in this gallery wall were gifted to me by Poster Store
When Poster Store reached out and said I could choose anything from their THOUSANDS (I am not even exaggerating!) of gorgeous images, it took me forever to decide. When I came across these, I immediately knew they would be the perfect finishing touch for our basement.
If this collection doesn’t create a mountain cabin vibe, I don’t know what will. It is a whole mood!
Do yourself a favor and have a look at the vast collection of images Poster Store has to offer.
When you select an image, they suggest other images complimenting the look to create
a custom gallery wall.
I broke even more design rules with a second gallery wall in the same room!
This living area is beyond cozy and we love hanging out down here, more than ever before.
The rustic sign on the right was a housewarming gift from my sweet friend Andrea, also our realtor, who helped us find our dream home.