Basement of Shame – Step 1, Admitting You Have a Problem

I know I keep hinting at a basement that is crazytown full of lord knows what but here’s for real.


This is my “studio”.  It is the anteroom to my walk-in closet and right now holds a lot of junk.  Pair of chairs I found in an alley in Lafayette Square?  Check.  All my shoes?  Check.  Clothes that I bought at Value Village and need to go to a tailor? Check.  Laundry that I haven’t hung up in the closet yet because it’s really freaking cold in our basement right now?  Check.  Random bits and bobs of fabric that I’m saving for any and all future projects? Check.  A Gateway Desktop from 2002? Check.   (Still chugging.)  My teddy bear that Shenanigan chewed the face off of when he was a puppy?  Double check.  Party favors from our wedding in 2004? Check.  Hey it’s reality.  We’re lucky to live in the midwest and have a basement!  It’s just time to start utilizing all this space a little better.

One good thing this room has going for it is the weird built-in storage left by the former owner (sporting my sorority paddle from Truman, yeah AGD!).  That will stay, as will the weird little cabinet that hides the main water shut-off in the corner.  Everything else – gone!  Put away, donated, used for a project or vaporized to somewhere else.  That’s not really true, a lot of the craft supplies and tools will stay along with the computer (I still use it — it has my Adobe Creative Suite I bought in college on it along with AutoCAD 2000!) but this room needs a serious dose of organization.

So first I decided I needed a plan.  Like a floor plan.  So I measured out my room and the furniture I wanted in there and did a quick CAD plan.


Floor plans and furniture plans are the best part about having access to CAD.  If you didn’t, some graph paper could be your best friend — set each box on the graph as an increment (1″ or 6″ or whatever fits) and use that as a guideline for anything you draw.  The furniture got cut out so I could rearrange to my heart’s content without lifting any heavy items.

The two brown items are an early 90s Danish desk and the beer pong table that used to be upstairs.  They were purchased by my parents at the same time so their finishes match (or used to before the table got used for beer pong).  The white rectangle is a folding table and the two blue rectangles are a surprise — something I picked up and am hoarding in my basement from Warehouse of Stuff . . .


Here’s two layouts I liked best.  The room has a weird dog leg and the “fancy” built-ins so the options are somewhat limited unless I buy new furniture (not happening).  So I’m off to a slow start on what will probably be a long and arduous project.

What are you guys up to this weekend?  I finally put on some warm clothes and braved the cold of the basement to start painting our Super Bowl Shelves.  (Yep, first coat went on last night.  I’m slow at projects, okay!).  I’m hoping to get some more done on those and maybe have them hung next week.  Cheers – CT

2 responses to “Basement of Shame – Step 1, Admitting You Have a Problem

  1. I love this post. I did a kitchen post a few weeks ago because I also have been ashamed of it. Wait until I do the expensive windows post. You are lucky you are young and actually astute about design. I was ever so stupid and get to redo silly mistakes from the past. Anyway, I have started planning a kitchen remodel. A friend of mine uses excel to do cad drawings. I make fun of her but at least she gets going. I need to do measurements and a layout like you and start moving things around. Thanks for the inspiration. Paper, pen and cut outs can be my friend. Kindergarten here we come!

  2. I used umpteen pieces of graph paper planning my new apartment.It’s been fun to see the drawing turn into a reality. I can’t wait to see what you do!

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