Thursday, June 6, 2013

Under the Stairs

Home projects rarely turn out exactly as you expect - and even more rarely require less than 20 trips to Lowes. Ours was no exception. This project has been a journey to say the least. In our home there is a small room under the stairs. It was unfinished, smelled of dirty dog (from the former home owners), and only served as a place to stick our broken down boxes from the move.

I love art and I want my now 3-year-old daughter to experience all types of art. But that's difficult to do indoors! I don't want to have to micro-manage, but it's almost impossible not to if you don't want paint, clay, etc. on the hardwood floor, table, couch, walls - parents, you know what I mean?

So my vision was, let's convert this small 6.5' square room into her free-for-all. Turn her loose, let the paint and whatever else fly. Small project, I thought. Wrong... but so very worth it! We went to work in the evenings. She didn't even suspect! It was our plan to have it ready for the big reveal on her birthday. And by golly, we did it!

Before/After of entry - used shellac-based primer to seal in any stink on the drywall. I didn't want the smell to still be there after all was said and done. 

Before and after, 'round the corner - reading nook and desk.
  • Gold polka dots on ceiling 2" Gold Seals, Staples
    I used a 2" circle punch to remove the jagged edge. I'm pleased with how they look, but do re-stick them every time I go in the room...
  • Light fixture White Powder-Coated Flush Mount Fluorescent Light, Lowes
  • Pink paint - Valspar, 'Pretty in Pink'
  • Magnetic, Chalk board wall on right
    If I could do it all over again, I would not have messed with the magnetic paint. It added a lot of texture, so the eraser sheds a LOT when erasing the chalk.

  • Triangle Pendants made from paint swatches picked up during our many trips to Lowes, strung with white yarn
  • Banner Pendants made from cardstock book. Printed letters backwards onto shiny side of Transparency Film, then rubbed them onto the cardstock to spell out her name
  • Vinyl flooring, Lowes
  • Trim - nothing fancy, straight and simple white trim, Lowes
  • Display rail Roller System, Staples
  • Marker board and screw covers, Lowes
I wanted her to have options - so chalkboard on the right, drawing on paper or on the markerboard on the left, art desk around the corner for those sit-down projects (painting, playdough, etc)
  • Princess castle decal, Amazon
  • Curtain held up by tension rod, velcro fabric strip to hold it back (sewn to 3M hook)
  • Foil wrapping paper, Target $1 bin
    brought in some color, she LOVES the mirror effect
  • Glow in the dark foam stars
  • Picture Ledges 21 3/4" Long, IKEA - book storage
  • Crib mattress and pillows - now that she's in a big girl bed, this was just in storage! Along with the comforter, Dwell Studio Olivia (discontinued - I found it on eBay)
  •  BYGEL rail, 39", IKEA - chalkboard storage
  • Hooks, BYGEL, IKEA
  • Pails, from the Target $1 bins

The big reveal happened right after her 3rd birthday party! We managed to keep it a secret until then - she hadn't been in the room since hanging the drywall. "Wow!, Wow!" This was all she could say as she walked in for the first time. Then she went around the corner, got in the bed, and asked us all to leave. She was going to sleep. Since then, she loves to go in there to lay on the bed and read or play on the iPad, paint using the desk, or draw on the chalkboard and markerboard.
I'm so thrilled that she loves it as much as daddy and I loved putting it together for her!

1 comment:

  1. Oh Robin, this is seriously one of the cutest, most thoughtful things I've ever seen! You and Andy did a magnificent job! I want one in my house for Landon. Can we hire you guys? ;-) Seriously though, what a neat thing for Gwennie!