(See what they taught me in design school?)
I don't have a proper before shot, but picture a windowless basement, two rooms separated by French doors. White walls in the main space, weird lime green in the other. About 1/3 as many lights as you'd expect in the space. And no staircase railing, since the previous owners broke it on their way out. Zero functional space (but a decent size).
Last June our ceiling in the smaller green room came down thanks to some water damage. Lovely drywall ground into the carpet, exposed pipes and electrical, and mold.
We kept the electrical work all in the family. Grandpa Green was in town to help, and Daddy's taught the girls, and my sister, Dana, who was visiting at the time, a bit about wiring.
The main room is for toys, the kids' computer, and gaming.
We used this post from Infarrantly Creative as inspiration to make these framed game boards, which just might be the coolest addition. We stayed up until 3 am on Christmas Eve Eve (or Christmas Adam, as some say, since Adam came before Eve). We plan on collected older versions of the games, and using higher quality wood next time.
Instead of doing major electrical work, we're supplementing the light in the main room with these friendly tree-lamps.
Still to do--replace the bannister! And notice the white spot on the walls? We still have some touch-ups to do. The last owners had a wet bar here. Took the bar, left the water pipe sticking out of the wall. Thanks.
Thanks, Martha Stewart via Home Depot, for useful toy storage.
The furniture is all a collection of stuff we already had and stuff we've been given through the years. The little game table is a hand me down from my friend, Jessica, and the maps were purchased and laminated a few years ago to track Chrisian's business trip through Asia.
We're calling this room the bean bag room. Grandpa Green helped us fix up the lighting during his visit in September. We later installed a dimmer switch. We removed the french doors to open up the space. Plus, the doors swung the wrong way, making the light switch useless. We plan on purchasing a new tv and a few more extra-large bean bags as time goes on. They're super comfortable!
This picture clip hanger is something I picked up from Ikea last summer--wish I had bought a few more. Its awesome! I have another one we used in our last kitchen, but I haven't found it since the move. It will go in the big room, above the kids' toys.
The color is Autumn Haze, ripped off from The House of Smiths' house color pallete. I love it. I think having the right color on the wall made almost as much difference as the improved lighting!
I think I'm so impressed with this renovation because it took a completely useless, stupid space and made it completely function and inviting. Its really a fun place to be. Plus, we did it for relatively little money. Only a few repairs (some DIY, so hired out), paint, and a few pieces of decor!