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Monday, November 11, 2013
31 Days of Decorating with Junk: A Not so Junky Basement
Our house is over 100 years old. And our basement was disgusting. Imagine a wet, musty, yucky graveyard for old appliances. We used it as a makeshift workshop while working on the rest of the house, so there was sawdust everywhere, including stuck in the decades old cobwebs on the ceiling. There were large gaps at the top of the cinder block that mice and (yes!) snakes used to enter the house. And I still had to do my laundry down there!
I searched for over an hour to find a “before” picture of the basement, but I can’t find it. Maybe it was just too horrible to ever photograph. This is the best “before” picture I can find, and it’s a LOT better than the real “before.”
But not anymore. Our disgusting, yucky basement is now a welcoming family room. An amazing transformation.
Last year, we were thinking about building a home addition. We needed more space. But as our plans (and the cost) for the addition grew, we started to wonder if it was smarter to finish the basement.
At first, we weren’t even sure it was possible. But the cinder block walls were in pretty good condition, and the ceiling was high enough (a rarity in these old houses!) So we called Midwest Basement Systems to see about the water issues.
A year and a half later, we have a finished basement for a 1/5th of the cost of an addition!
So how’d we get from this
First, Midwest Basement Systems put in a “french drain.” They pounded up concrete along the walls, inserted a drain, installed two sump pumps with backup batteries, and a couple of wall braces where we needed them. They used spray foam insulation around the top of the cinder block to seal any gaps. They also installed a plastic sheet on the walls – similar to a pool liner – so that if there’s any condensation, it runs down behind the plastic and into the drain.
In the meantime, we had our contractor (who did our siding and windows) move our washer and dryer to the back room of the basement.
Then came the fun stuff.
Framed up the walls, and hung drywall.
But notice the ceiling? No drywall up there. Instead, hubby used a paint sprayer to first prime, then paint the ceiling. Primed first…
Then painted… and installed green LED lights.
Vinyl flooring at the base of the stairs and towards the laundry room, and carpet in the family room.
Finally, we purchased an electric fireplace/tv stand to warm things up a bit.
Bart has started moving things down to his “man room” and I’m thrilled because his office will become a play room on the first floor!
This post is part of 31 Days of Decorating with Junk: Vintage, Antique and Unique for your Home and Garden.
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See you tomorrow!
31 Days of Decorating with Junk Posts:
31 Days of Decorating with Junk Introduction
Farmhouse Style Front Porch
Modern Farmhouse Design
Repurposed Upright Piano
Our Exterior Makeover Reveal
Adjustable Game Table Makeover (In a Ballard Designs Whitewashed Style)
The HomeShed's September Sale & Fall Decor Inspiration
Proof that I'm a HardCore Junker
My Gallery Wall
HomeShed Sale Preview and Christmas Inspiration
Cute Green Dresser with Chalkboard Labels
My Favorite Paint for Antique Furniture
Kris's Cabin Tour
Essential Tools for Repurposing
Making a Custom Glaze
Fixing a Stripped Out Screw Hole
How to Make Your Home Your Own
Spray or Brush?
Five from the Archives
Owning a Junky Business Part 1
Owning a Junky Business Part 2
Simple Vintage Halloween
Five (More) from the Archives
Crib Spring Repurpose
Owning a Junky Business Part 3
Pallet Wall Art
Not So Junky Basement
Owning a Junky Business Part 4
31 Days Wrap Up