August 16, 2013

From Headboard to Demolition {?}

While I was dreaming up my headboard and super excited about it, my husband had a completely other project in mind...
My dreams included images of beautiful headboards like this:
Whereas my husband was dreaming about this:
Since we have taken a year-long break since renovating the main floor, Jon has been anxious to get back into it. Although I did not completely agree, there was no stopping him. The man has demolished the first area of our BASEMENT {what?}. Our basement may not have been perfect or esthetically pleasing, or even a part of this century... but the kids used it as a play area.
In any case, my basement went from looking like this {plus some furniture...sorry, no recent pics... didn't have a chance before he ripped into it!} :
To looking like this in just a few hours:
Jon's plan {which I am just going with - a.k.a. decided to pick my battles} is to work on this first section, along with redoing the staircase and side entrance area. That wooden door you see in the picture above is our cold storage which is underneath our front entrance. It really separates the extra-long space nicely and allows us to work in sections. We plan to refinish the entire basement is 5 phases {yes that is F-I-V-E}. It will be a 5 to 10 year project. This is phase 1.
To give you a better picture and vision, here is a floor plan of the existing layout: 
Here is a different floor plan to illustrate the different phases and the order in which we are planning to work on each space:
I created both of these plans using a website called It was super easy and awesome, oh and it's FREE!
We are not planning on installing any flooring until the majority of the basement is complete. I may get a few area rugs to delineate the different areas and spaces, otherwise we will be on the bare concrete for a while. I would LOVE to paint the concrete with a faux finish. Check out these finishes that I am toying with:
As a temporary solution, it would only cost a bit of paint and time! Perfect! And I think it looks pretty good!
Now, since this "plan" was literally thrown at me the night before the demo started, I'm just trying to wrap my head around it all, so forgive me if my thoughts seem a little all-over-the-place. My initial thought {once I got over the initial shock, confusion and annoyance} was that I get to pick a color scheme and create a new inspiration board, and pick lighting fixtures, etc. So, YAY for me!
In our previous home, I had created this basement inspiration board:
As most of our current home's décor includes blues and greens, I really want to use a different palette in the basement, so this board with red accents is perfect. But, being me, I wanted to create an updated inspiration board with a fabric as a starting-off point.
2013 Basement Inspiration Board:
I want the whole of the basement to feel bright so I am thinking a light greige {grey-beige} for all the walls, with substantial bright white trim and baseboards, and with dark hardware. We plan on installing A LOT of recessed lights to help brighten every corner of the basement, especially in Phase 1 where there will be no natural light as there are ZERO windows. It's difficult to explain my vision so I'll break it down using the pre-established phases:
Phase 1 - Stairs and Play area:
We are creating a play area for the kids, as well as setting up a small computer desk along with some floor-to-ceiling closed hanging storage and shelving for some out-of-season coats and clothes. I would like at least one sofa in this area and possibly an occasional chair or two. Eventually, I'd like a smaller TV hung on the wall where we can setup the Playstation for games and movies for the kids' use.
As for the side entrance and stairs which share a wall with Phase 1, we are painting it the same greige color, installing a new light fixture, painting the door an accent color {I'm thinking a punchy teal blue, or maybe a moody dark grey} and updating the hardware. I love these options all from Shades of Light for the light fixture but it will all depend on the clearance required for passers by NOT to get injured:

As it is such a small area, I think a statement light fixture is important. I would also love to add a large piece of artwork to really set the tone for our whole home, something colorful and fun, yet classic. I still love this piece from an Ontarian artist called Siiso, and am determined to find a place for it in our home:
Another option would be a piece with a message like "Welcome to our home" or something fun like "Hello Sunshine". There are so many options on, it is hard to pick just one... maybe a grouping of them would be appropriate:
I would like to hang a few hooks and maybe a tray for filing that needs to go to the basement, sort of like this:
A picture gallery cascading down the wall would also be great:
*Love that runner!
Even just empty frames painted in a bright color:
This sort of décor will be determined  as a sort of final touch once all else is complete.
As for the stairs themselves, I am leaning towards simply painting the wood, depending on the state of it once we remove everything. We had carpeting on the stairs of our previous home, and it was so worn-out after only a few years that it sort of discouraged me to go that route again. I am not opposed to a runner, and we have enough carpet leftover from the bedrooms to use for that, but it will be decided as we go.
Have you kept up with me so far? That is only Phase 1! I'll keep the other phases brief for now.
Here are the phases again:
And this is my vision {don't pay too much attention to the furniture and finishes; it is just to give an idea of the placement but none of the pieces are certain yet}:
Phase 2 -  New Guest Bedroom & Craft Room: we will be getting rid of the existing closet and the current placement of the doors because, as it currently is, you have to go through the laundry room then through the electrical room to get to the room itself {which is currently used for storage}. The wall between the electrical room and the room itself will be removed and a new closet will be built in it's place with easy access to the electrical panel. The new door will be placed on the previous closet wall.
Phase 3 - Laundry Room: not much will take place here. The door to the old electrical room will be closed off and shelving will be installed for storage. The floor will either be painted or covered with some sort of linoleum or vinyl, something comfy underfoot. I would love to add a punchy fabric for the window curtain, and maybe a little piece of artwork! I am envisioning an aqua and red color scheme to go with our existing lipstick red washer and dryer:
Phase 4 - Games & Bar Area, and TV Lounge: this entire corner will see a big change. The guestroom walls will be removed completely. A support post will remain but otherwise, the whole area will become an open L-shaped space. We are contemplating closing off one or two windows {well, Jon is; I'd rather keep them for natural lighting but he feels it might be more of an annoyance for TV viewing!}. I want the flooring in the games and bar area to be easy to wash so I am thinking either laminate or even linoleum in a pale grey wood finish, installed on a 45 degree angle. For the TV lounge, I prefer a comfortable carpet that is also easy to wash for pop corn messes during family movie nights! Jon dreams of a wet-bar in the same area as the current retro bar, made of warm walnut. The card table needs to be comfortable for 4-people with plush chairs, an area rug to delineate the space and a chandelier dropped from above to light up cards just perfectly.
Phase 5 - Washroom and Furnace Room: in this final phase, we will be gutting the existing tiny washroom completely. I want the resulting renovated space to feel warm even though it is in the basement. I am thinking earthy tones of chocolate and grey, a built-in two-person shower with bright chrome finishes. This will be our crowning jewel to the basement renovation {and by then, our kids may be in college!}.
As discouraging as all this can seem as it is so far from being complete {or started for that matter}, it is inspiring to see our ideas start to come to life and it is something that Jon and I can {hopefully} work on together!
I hope that wasn't too overwhelming for you all! I will be sure to share pictures as soon as there are visible changes to show!