Design Motivation

Like many families, our clients needed more space and weren’t sure how their current home could adapt to the lifestyle of their young family without either having to leave their beloved neighborhood or take over the yard with an addition. We needed to find a way to grow the home without making any changes to the footprint, so we proposed a total basement overhaul.

Client Needs:

  • An additional bedroom
  • A full bathroom
  • Hangout space
  • Exercise area
  • Plenty of storage

Areas of Consideration:

  • A bedroom requires a means of egress for building code compliance.
  • Mechanical equipment could create low ceiling heights.
  • Exposed Pipes and unfinished basement walls don’t create a cozy atmosphere.
  • The laundry area would need to stay downstairs.
The existing lower level had plenty of space to consider, but the dark and unfinished layout was totally unusable for our clients. The design had to consider the existing mechanical equipment, exposed pipes, stair location, and the large list of needs we wanted to satisfy for our clients.

The Final Basement Plan

Proposing a basement redesign to homeowners who only ever knew the space as an unfinished, dark storage room took some serious design work and planning. In order to be successful, the design really needed to be efficient to give our clients the breathing room they were looking for in the home. We segmented the lower level into appropriately scaled private and public zones, placed rooms with respect to existing window locations, and found design inspiration in materials that would brighten up the once lifeless basement. Unlike the existing basement layout, the new design made sure to immediately immerse the family in an open and bright entertainment space ideal for movie nights, playing games, or enjoying the company of friends. The large openness of the room also allowed us to tuck an efficient workout zone just beyond the living room seating. To prioritize their cozy new entertainment space, we strategically hid existing pipes and mechanical equipment and enclosed the laundry and storage rooms.

In the final layout, the central stair opens into a versatile family space our clients can adapt as their children get older. Enclosing the private areas helped make the basement feel cozy and appropriately sized. By adding a bedroom just passed the lower hallway, occupants get the privacy they need in an end-of-day retreat.
Renderings for the new living room showcase the bright new floor and open concept family space just off the central stair. The vivid, blue feature wall will be painted in Sherwin Williams, Cascade.
A new shelf display will give the family plenty of room for storing all their board games, while the nearby workout zone provides the right space for their preferred gym equipment.
Interior Elevation | The shelving wall is a great accent to the living room, but it also helps hide an existing pipe that made the basement seem uninviting. The cream colored walls painted in Sherwin Williams Shiitake balance the new luxury vinyl tile flooring and provide an excellent backdrop for the vivid blue paint within the shelving nook.
Our bathroom rendering shows off the bright and modern bathroom layout we designed for the lower level, adding a much-desired full bathroom to this 1930's South Minneapolis home.

Creating A modern and Efficient Bathroom

The addition of a full bath in any home is a worthwhile upgrade, especially a 1930’s South Minneapolis home. The design incorporated a fully tiled shower and tub for all ages to enjoy, while the sophisticated finishes and selections will give the room a newly found elegance. We prioritized an efficient layout that kept all the plumbing along a single wall without making the bathroom feel overly cramped. The new design called for a natural wood vanity and warm-toned tile flooring with pops of whites and bronzes to maintain the modern feel of the room.

Interior Elevation | Having a bathroom in the lower level is important for the adjacent bedroom but also for entertaining later on. The layout shows the generous vanity right at the entry, a new toilet, and a fully equipped shower and tub.
The aesthetic direction of the bathroom is evident in the selections, where earthy tones and accents of bronze create a modern sophistication that carries into the rest of the basement as well.
In the new bathroom shower, we're mixing lovely off-white and delicate blue tiles that shine against the Kohler Entity 60" tub and DELTA Lahara shower fixtures. The bronze shower head and tub faucet tie into the lighting selections in the rest of the room.

From Laundry Room to New Bedroom

In the updated basement layout, our goal was to find a way to create a full bedroom and bathroom without unnecessary sacrifices to storage or living room space. We made the decision to re-home the washer and dryer near the furnace, enclose the new laundry room for privacy, and put a bedroom and bathroom at the previous laundry location. Incorporating an egress window will give the new bedroom more light and a necessary exit in case of an emergency. Clever and practical space planning totally changed the way the family would be able to use their home, taking a once much-too-small-house and adding over 600 sq.ft of purely functional and beautiful space.

The new bedroom layout is perfectly sized for any age and has the properly sized window for code compliance. This egress window is an import addition in the room, providing a means of escape in case of fire or other emergency.
The soft purple walls seen here by the closet doors provide a calming place to unwind at the end of each day. The clients let their children pick the exact color, a fun shade of purple called Grape Mist by Sherwin Williams.

Up Next…Look inside as this 1930’s basement demolition begins.


Remodel Details