If you are anything like me, you never stop dreaming about your next big home project.
When we moved into our house a year ago, we knew there were plenty of projects we’d like to work on in the future. But, with a few exceptions, we spent much of the past 12 months settling in and enjoying the space we created.
But now it’s time to create a little more usable living space for our family – so we are starting with phase one of finishing the basement.
Phase 1: Finishing the basement family room
Why finish the space?
Frankly, we love all the space we have in our home – it’s working well for us. But the two reasons we are finishing the basement are for more family space and more space for toys.
The basement will be such a wonderful extension of our living space – giving us more area to spread out and spend together as a family. We’ve used the unfinished basement as a pseudo toy room for the past year, but it will be wonderful to create a space where we can all hang out together.
While we love the living room, I don’t want all the toys spread out in the main living area. The basement gives us the best of both worlds.
It will be wonderful to have a space that appeals to both adults and kids. We will be creating storage space for all the toys, but also have comfortable seating and some creature comforts. It’s a win-win.
Also, did I mention it’s going to be BEAUTIFUL?
What the space already has …
- Giant windows and tons of natural light.
- 9 foot ceilings.
- In-floor heat and insulation.
It also has a neglected treadmill, plenty of toys, and a collection of rugs. But that’s a story for another day.
A vision of shiplap
As soon as Ryan and I started talking about the basement, I thought it would be the perfect space to try our hand at shiplap. I couldn’t get the idea of out of my head.
Shiplap is definitely on-trend right now, but it also has a classic look that I think can stand the test of time. (See: Classic vs. trendy design.)
After all, shiplap has been around for hundreds of years. And my gut says that if you love something, you should be allowed to make it work in your home.
I can’t wait to see how it comes together in this space – creating a little more interest in our basement that would be possible with standard flat walls.
In addition to added visual interest, it allows Ryan to install the boards directly to the studs or joists (since the space is already insulated). Doing this now gives us a bit of a break from plaster board and plastering all the walls and ceilings.
Here are a few inspiration images guiding our design:
But … the finished basement will probably feel a little more rustic than these images. We do live in the middle of corn fields, after all.
We will be mixing it up with white and natural pine, with plenty of dark accents throughout.
Creating shiplap from wood floors
As we were planning the space, I looked into lots of different options for creating a shiplap look. Shiplap is so popular right now and there are tons of ideas at all budget points.
But one idea I kept coming back to is repurposing wood flooring as shiplap planks. It’s not something I’ve seen done a lot, but it has several perks:
- Wood floors are sold as tongue and groove, making installation fairly straightforward.
- Wood floors come in wide or narrow widths – giving lots of options.
- Wood floors are fairly true and uniform – you rarely have to deal with wonky spots or planks.
- Wood floors can easily be painted or stained, for a variety of looks.
- Unfinished wood floors can be purchased affordably.
After working with Lumber Liquidators for our yellow pine floors and our butcher block island top, we set out to shop for planks that could also work as shiplap.
There were plenty of options. We ended up choosing New England White Pine in wide (almost) 9 inch planks. The wood is beautiful – my dad picked it up at our local Lumber Liquidators store and it’s acclimating in the basement as we speak.
We will use the wood on all walls AND ceilings. But we may finish the walls and ceilings differently for a unique look. Stay tuned.
Ryan’s just finished installing the final lights in the basement. Soon, he’ll begin installing shiplap on the walls. We’ll be back soon to share the process and progress, in case you want to try a similar project in your home.
Thanks to Lumber Liquidators for providing the shiplap for our basement family room. And thank you for supporting sponsors who make projects like this possible.
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