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Semi-Finished Basement Bedroom

July 14, 2015
by thenestinggame

It’s been about 2 years since I last posted, so I’m not going to even bother catching you up on what’s been going on (kids, work, family), but we have had 1 semi-significant house project worthy of report (the new roof is not so worthy), so I thought I would share it for no other reason that I could find very few references to a project like this when we started.

semi finished basement bedroom

In our unfinished basement, we had 2 small rooms that were drywalled in, with rough doors and interior windows. It was the “Greg Brady Bedroom” for the teenage son who had lived in our house before us. We used the space for storage and painting projects, but when we were expecting Townes we knew we needed an extra bedroom for Beck and Sadie.

Here’s what we were working with. When this picture was taken, Taylor had already knocked down the wall that divided the room into two. It spanned from the left side of the photo to the right – incorporating that center pole.



Then, we (hired a guy and) painted the floors, walls and ceilings white. Getting a little better. I think this was after the first coat.


So, to back up a smidge – I did a design plan based around what you don’t see on the other side of those walls, which is a sh*t-ton of furniture, lamps, projects and all around general hoarding. I knew I already had most of what I’d need to furnish this room. I found a Wes Anderson-inspired color palette blog and used this Moonrise Kingdom poster as our color inspiration – somewhat driven by the fact that I had a yellow chair to use. You’ll see by my captions that purple items are new, blue items we already had. (We had already bought a second set of trundle beds via Craigslist and a rug (new), so technically those are purchases, even though they are in blue.)




I put together a design board for the furnishings and fabrics.


And with the wave of my magic decorating wand, here it is in real life.

Semi-Finished Basement: Trundle Beds

Along the back wall, we had waterproofing to work around – you can see the plastic sheets if you scroll up a couple photos. We used canvas painter cloths and hung them from the ceiling to a) obsure the walls and b) add a little warmth and texture. Our room at the Ace Hotel Palm Springs had canvas along the walls and we really liked the warmth it gave off. So, it made perfect sense to do it here

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. We bought the drop cloths and a grommet kit, hammered in the grommets, then screwed in brass hooks along the rafters.


There are 4 twin beds down here, so plenty of room for a group of kids. A few adults (including Taylor and I) have even slept down here and it’s not all that bad – feels like a little apartment.

The duvet covers are from Ikea, the throws were on clearance from West Elm and the throw pillows also on clearance from Target. The artwork is Taylor’s and I love how vibrant it is. The nightstands were mine as a kid and are just butted up beside each other.

semi finished basement bedroom



I flipped the furniture arrangement around a bit from the original plan. It works better this way with a little “dressing area” in front of the beds. Only real downside is that it’s tough to see the TV from the beds.

The table/vanity/desk situation is a worktable from our basement. I covered the top with white vinyl just to make it a little smoother/nicer/cleaner. Beck uses this as a desk. I use it as a sewing table. It’s easy to move out from the wall, if needed and, while it could stand to be painted, does the job for now.



I did a couple little crafty projects – very little projects. First, I wrapped these hooks with some embroidery thread in the colors of the room.




Kitty artwork by Sadie.

Then, I painted some clothespins and used command strips to adhere them to the wall to hold snapshots. In theory these could be changed out all the time easily. (In reality, they have been the same for 2 years.)


On the flip side of the room is the living area.


This chair was $35 second-hand and is insanely comfortable. I made the throw pillow with Gemstone Coastal fabric by Premier Prints.


For the “sofa”, I had the back cushions reupholstered in this Dwell Studio print, Ming Dragon- an affordable Schumacher Chiang-Mai dragon knockoff – and then I sewed a long lumbar pillow in another Premier Prints fabric, Jiri Stripe (I really love this one and it comes in lots of colorways.) I did sew it a little too tight, though – boo. I also recovered a stool I had in the same fabric. You can see it at the end of the bed. For the sofa’s mattress, I bought a fitted mattress slipcover in gray.



The old Pottery Barn bookcase holds the TV, books, entertainment gear and my (very non styled) sewing supplies. The canvas drop cloths also came in handy to wrap around a sump pump that’s in the corner – you can see how they jut out a bit at an angle on the right.



The radio box was a gift and is a fun place to stash controllers and cords.

This metal bamboo etagere has been in my life forever and always finds a spot. I’ve debated painting it many times, but the original yellow actually works really well here. The big, 72″ bamboo roller shade gives a little privacy, but still lets natural light in.


And finally, the rug was a 75% off deal from Rugs USA and is actually an indoor/outdoor rug, though it feels much softer than that. I got a 5×8 size, though truly I should have splurged for the 8×10.


So, yeah, I am under no impression that this is a perfect, magazine-worthy space. It’s still in a semi-finished room in an unfinished basement that is vaguely mildewy from time to time and one story beneath a bathroom. But, it has been a great “apartment” for Beck and Sadie and a few guests here and there. It’s added a much needed room to our home and the $3,000 we spent to bring it to life sure beat the $50k estimate for finishing the entire basement!

If you are looking for semi-finished basement ideas, here’s my Pinterest board with some images of similar spaces. And this basement from Better Homes and Gardens was hugely inspiring. My kingdom for built-in bunk beds!

Hope you enjoyed! Also hope I have something else to share before 2017. Will Donald Trump be our president by then?

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Melissa permalink
    July 14, 2015 11:08 pm

    Yay!! You’re back! Lovely new room. :)

  2. Chirag permalink
    July 14, 2015 11:10 pm

    Great write up and fantastic job on the room!

  3. July 15, 2015 10:44 am

    It looks amazing. Your stuff always does. Miss your blog but miss you even more. xo

  4. Elaine permalink
    July 15, 2015 12:16 pm

    Great to see you on your blog again!
    The “apartment” is great. Beck loves it!
    Have seen it in person, and it is as cute and classy as the photos.

  5. July 31, 2016 8:25 am

    What a difference! Dark and dreary to usable space…..gotta love that!

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