Construction on the basement has been completed for about a month now, and Sam and adore our new space. My brother-in-law, Bill, and Sam’s cousin, Scott, did a fantastic job! At this point, I can’t determine which feature about the basement I like best – whether it’s the tray ceilings, the TV alcove, the carpeting, or the bathroom. But before we get to all that, how about I give you a look at the space before we renovated it…
Yes, I think it’s the bathroom that has to be the best feature to the remodel. It’s so nice to be able to watch TV or sit in my office and study and not have to run upstairs every time I need to use the lieu. We haven’t used the shower yet (that’s why there’s no curtain on there), but I’m sure it’ll make a great doggie spa!
I think another favorite feature I love is all the lighting. We really went over the top with the lights but in contrast to the dark, hovel that was the basement before, I think it really gives the space a warm and welcoming feel. We have something like 30 can lights, four Tiffany sconces in the dog’s room, and four pillar lights in the media room and library. Plus all the ceiling fans have lights. When they’re all on at once, the basement looks like a landing strip!
I also adore the tray ceilings. We opted to do a sheetrock ceiling verses a drop ceiling as I like the more finished, modern look of a full ceiling. And we created the trays to hide the existing heating and air duct work. We also went ahead and added some A/C ducts to the basement so we can include it in square footage of the house should we sell. So far this summer that has been the best decision we could have made. Its been HOT in Georgia.
Another cool choice were the ceiling fans. I’m not a ceiling fan lover at all – in fact, I think they’re ridiculously ugly for the most part, however in the basement we decided to put them in, just to help with air circulation and to minimalize that stale dog kennel odor that can sometimes happen when dogs are allowed to live in the house. Man am I ever glad I went with Sam’s gut on this one.
We also compromised on the fireplace. We both wanted to put a fireplace in, but the cost for installing a gas burning one was about $5,000, which would have taken up a full third of our budget for the renovations. So instead we choose this lovely maple wood gel fuel fireplace. We purchased a case of crackling gel inserts (which do put off a good bit of heat) and I can’t wait for winter when we can burn them.
I am also really happy with our carpeting choice. Even though we chose a commercial grade carpeting, we put it on a medium weight pad instead of gluing it to the concrete floor. What a difference that has made. Its both soft to walk on, and it makes dog hair clean up a snap. Just run the vacuum over it and I’m done. And the best part is, should we ever have any accidents (God forbid…knock on wood…crossing all my fingers and toes) the carpeting is coated with a Stainmaster protectant. What a smart choice.
Sam and I also chose to put leather furniture in as well so we wouldn’t have to worry about the dogs laying on it. We found these great over sized recliners at a super-cheap price, and the espresso color works so well with the carpeting. And these babies are perfect for watching a movie or taking a relaxing Sunday nap – just ask Dream and Iris.
And last but not least is my office. This is the place where I spend eight hours of my day – studying, writing, listening to lectures, blogging, surfing the net and just hanging out with the dogs. I love my desk. It’s modern and chic without being overly out of place in my house. I was able to hang a white board up as well so I can keep an eye on my schedule to ensure I’m staying on task.
I still have to paint the walls something other than white and put in some curtains and an area rug, but for the most part, we’re so pleased with the space. The painting won’t occur until winter now since we’re so busy with the garden…and who knows, maybe by then I’ll have chosen a color!