Basement (Pretty Much) Finished!

There’s still a few nagging little things to do in the basement – but isn’t that true for every room in the house, all the time? So I figured I’ll just get the final reveal out of the way and then we can all happily move on with our lives. It’s really mostly done, anyway – stuff is moved in, people are using it, things are rolling along. Yay!

In case you missed it, here’s the post where I showcase the two unfinished areas – a storage room and a work room.

So here’s a couple of shots of the bookshelves that you see when you first walk down the stairs.

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We still have books all over the house in various places – everyone has a bookshelf in their own room and there’s always a pile on various bedside tables and on the ottoman in our main family room. But at least this is a good central place for most of it, and it’s all easily accessible and sorted, and oh boy, do I EVER love me some sorting.

These are Billy bookcases from IKEA – we tried to buy some Billy cases for this purpose back in the spring and were told they were being discontinued, but apparently that is not the case. The middle unit – the skinny one – is an IKEA CD shelf, a Gnedby, which is the same height and colours as Billy. There is a special bracket set you can get at IKEA to create and properly anchor/attach the “around the corner” piece – it’s actually meant for the thin Billy piece but works fine (great, actually) with the CD shelf, which we chose because that’s all we could fit into the space (and it fits EXACTLY, WOOT).

Here’s a pic of heading down the hallway:

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Still not sure what we will do with the “under the stairs” shelving. Right now it is a mishmash of display type items and bins of extra candles and a temporary home for LEGO works-in-progress. I was thinking of using it for photo albums but in the end, fear of potential flooding or excess humidity kept them upstairs. On the wall we have a massive map of the world, complete with flags all around the border, which is something I have always wanted in my home. This one came pre-framed from World of Maps, which had a great selection, really helpful staff, and it was fairly reasonably priced too ($160 for this one, framed).

And notice that thing in the middle there – our new foosball table! I bought this one on Kijiji for $100 from a nice family that lives just three streets over from us. It was quite a happy union of needs. So far the kids are loving it – it’s getting a lot of playtime. I was originally going to put a crafts table here, but in the end I just couldn’t bring myself to put all the glue and beads and markers in our lovely brand new basement, so all that stuff stayed upstairs, and we went foosball instead.

Here’s the TV area:

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The carpet just arrived yesterday, it’s what was holding up this post. Now that it’s here I’m iffy on it. I love the colour but wish it had a more dynamic pattern. We’ll see. The little cubes against the wall are awesome – they are from Target and are hard enough to serve as a coffee table or games table, but soft enough for sitting on too for extra seating. The couch is a recliner couch and one cube fits perfectly between the two reclining ends, so we can tuck one in there to hold a bowl of chips. WOOT.

This is one area that still needs some work – I’d like some artwork for over the couch, and the TV is connected but we still need to hook up all the peripheral devices, and move the Wii down here too. The TV unit is from IKEA – it is a Besta, but we didn’t like the official Besta TV units because they were so low and didn’t have much storage, so we technically bought a Besta dining room side table, which means there are no holes in the back for cabling, so that’s going to take some work with power tools and yeah, we’ll get around to that…someday.

These shelves are behind the foosball table and hold all my sewing stuff:

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Check out those rad bear jars! They are from the 80s, made by Kraft, used to come with peanut butter and grape jelly and honey in them. My husband’s mother had kept them all these years and when she downsized about ten years ago, she gave them to us. We’ve almost gotten rid of them about 20 times – all this time they’ve still just been sitting around in a box – but I never could bring myself to do it, and finally I decided to get them out and use them for sewing supplies.

Then out of curiousity I looked them up on eBay, and turns out they sell on there for $30 EACH, so yeah, glad we kept them now, for sure.

Lastly, a couple shots of the play area, which is for the girls to do Barbies or Playmobil or Pretty Ponies or costumes – it’s a little messy but they are not doing too bad of a job so far at cleaning up after themselves. I’m hoping to make things easier on them by adding in this little PS coat stand from IKEA, but they never seem to have it in stock so we’re still in a holding pattern on that.

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All along the back wall there are IKEA PAX wardrobes, with the Auli/Sekken sliding glass panel doors. These were, without question, the hardest thing we have ever had to assemble from IKEA. We are pretty IKEA savvy people, but those sliding doors – O. M. G. They were heavy, and complex, and getting them clicked just so into the rails was such a headache. But the end result is great – they hold almost all of the kids’ toys as well as our massive collection of board games, and the sliding doors mean they don’t take up much real estate, and the glass makes them look lighter and not like such a huge dark looming hunk of furniture at the end of the room. So: worth it, but if you’re going to do this call me and I will assemble them for you for a small fee of pie and coffee.

And that’s it! Functional family living space, and we’re pretty happy with the way it looks and the way it’s all working.

Now we just have to deal with the fact that the upstairs is now a total shambles of peeling paint, holes in walls, and big empty spaces with no furniture. NEVERENDING, the house ownership is.

15 thoughts on “Basement (Pretty Much) Finished!

  1. MrsCarlSagan

    It looks amazing! I’m glad you kept the bear jars – they are perfect for storage of small bits.

    1. We also got a dehumidifier, by the way, that auto-empties into the drain. At first the basement was at 95% humidity – now it’s down around 60% at all times. It has made it feel much more comfortable down there. Thank you so much for the tip – never would have known to do this without you!

  2. Amazing! You are so fortunate to have this space and you did a great, fantastic job! Everyone in my family, from Toronto to Oakville to Vancouver to Switzerland even is using Billy Bookcases from IKEA for books. Awesome how you did that.

    Where are the legos? Did they stay with the individual kid(s)?

    1. They’re all in bins, in those PAX units across the back wall. Basically one entire PAX is for LEGO and a second is just for Playmobil. The rest is full of board games, some other dolls and their clothes, some hot wheels and star wars action figures, and that’s all that’s left. The Barbie stuff didn’t fit – it’s in the little white plastic “drawer” units up against the wall by the big pink castle. But close enough!

    1. I think at least one style was actually meant to be a bank. The big head ones are supposed to be cookie jars. I like the idea of a big jar of change turning into a Christmas treat – I think I will do that!

  3. smothermother

    Looks amazing Lynn!! I LOVE the bookcase. You need a beanbag chair beside it to curl up in after you’ve found the perfect book to read. 🙂

    Can you come help up with our basement now? It’s an organization nightmare.

  4. It’s fantastic! I love that you left the messy crafts upstairs so as not to mess up the nice clean basement. 🙂 We’re in that holes-in-the-walls disintegrating-bathtub-drains stage of house ownership too. It’s a huge pain in the ass. Also, my basement is a mess. I’m just going to come hang out in yours and play foosball. And now I have to look for my bear jars.

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