Before we were even considering finishing our basement, heck before E could really even walk, I was dreaming of and pinning playrooms and play tables. Maybe it’s the kid in me that doesn’t want to grow up, but anytime I enter a home with a dedicated playroom, that is not a guest bedroom moonlighting as a playroom, I feel a ping of jealousy.
Oh hi there, playroom of my dreams! I love you.
We currently have a playroom upstairs that’s bright and cheery and that will not be dissembled anytime soon, but since we hope to have more children we can’t bank on always having it to store toys. Plus it’s a little tight for run around play. You can see pictures of the upstairs playroom via the Tour Our Home page here.
Because of the reasons above, it was important to me that we prioritize play space in the basement. Space I could rely on always being dedicated to our children. I had dreams of a large room, with giant chalkboard walls, with primary colors and storage. When we put pen to paper and wrote down our must haves in the basement it became clear that we couldn’t have a designated playroom, a family area with a couch, a kitchenette, and the large, open space we were shooting for.
Compromises had to be made and the main one was the independent playroom. Instead we have play spaces throughout the basement, including a large chunk of real estate in the entertainment room. I refer to it as “the playroom” because it is where the craft table will be and we are having wall-to-wall cabinetry installed for toy storage. If you’re interested in how the basement is laid out and more about the overall design, I described that in detail here and here.
Designing this space was a challenge because I wanted to maintain some child-like charm, while blending seamlessly into the darkly painted entertainment room.
- Wall-to-wall mirrored cabinets
Instead of Ikea-hacking it like we did in the office, we are having custom storage installed along the entire window wall. We considered the cost savings to the amount of time it would take us to complete, and it did not make sense for us to take on the project ourselves. We are working with Clearwater Cabinetry to design mirrored cabinets. The reason for the mirrors is they will reflect light and brighten up the space. (Yes, I know I’ll need to invest in some good glass cleaner to wipe away E’s little handprints.) The bottom cupboards will have roll out shelves to make it easy for E to access her favorite toys.
- Bench seat
It’s hard to tell in the mock up, but there will be over 6 ft of seating below our new, large window. Originally, I planned for the bench seat to open up like a toy chest, but after talking with the cabinet maker he suggested we do pull out drawers. I like it. There will be less of a chance of little fingers getting pinched and it will still equal easy toy cleanup. I’ll be able to throw the toys in the drawers and not think about the mess until it is time for spring cleaning! Sold!
- Rejuvenation’s Berkshire Sconce
When I saw these on Rejuvenation’s website I fell in love with their classic touch. They will light up the bench seat, turning it into a quaint reading nook. The windowsill is actually really deep so I plan to use it as a bookshelf.
- Lucent Lightshop’s Sputnik Chandelier No. 3
I talked about how obsessed I was about these lights in this post. After writing it I realized that I had to have one for above the play table. It is modern enough to seem adult, but spunky enough that it makes sense in a playroom. If you can’t have fun with playroom lighting, where can you.
- Restoration Hardware’s Vintage Schoolhouse Small Play Table and Chairs
I love a little nostalgia. My mom said the table looked just like the ones she sat at when she was in elementary school. Both Daren and I love that the steel top should wear well and that the style fits into the very unconventional 1920s art deco library meets family vibe we’re shooting for.
It definitely isn’t going to be a traditional playroom, but I think it will suite our family. A pop of color and some funky accents throughout the rest of the room will help soften the darkness of the paint and hopefully keep it from feeling stuffy.
Tell us what you think in the comments!
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