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Flooring Our Basement Conversion: Case Study

By: Mary Williams BA (hons) - Updated: 1 Apr 2011 | comments*Discuss
 
Flooring Our Basement Conversion: Case Study

Jen and Rob Baines used their cellar for storage for many years. When they eventually converted it into a fully useable basement, lots of new fixtures and fittings had to be brought in, including flooring.

Jen said: “It was fun converting our basement. Rob and I had talked about it for a long time, working out how we might use this great space we had underneath our house. Our home dates back to the late 19th century. It is a five-bedroom, terraced house, which in many ways is identical to the others in the row. They all have good cellar spaces, with reasonable head-height and, because we are on top of a hill, they are all fairly dry.

Different Flooring for Separate Areas

Eventually after several years of mulling it over, we decided to make an entertainment room in the basement, somewhere we could all go to relax and watch a movie, and somewhere we could direct our teenagers to when we felt we needed a bit of space! There were two smaller rooms down there too, off a corridor into which the stairs came down. We decided to make one of these into a shower room and toilet, and the other into a small store room that might eventually become a kitchen, should we ever decide to rent the whole area out as one self-contained flat. The upshot of this planning was that we realised we would have to choose several different types of flooring, as the separate areas of the basement would have very individual uses.

Carpet for the Stairs

The staircase that came down into our cellar was wooden. It wasn’t terribly attractive – old pine that had been painted and repainted over the years with some sort black lacquer. We decided the stairs would probably need reinforcing if they were to endure heavier traffic, so we had them strengthened with MDF. This made them even less attractive to look at, making carpet our real only option. In the hallway above, we had a Soft Wool Carpet, in a sandy colour. Luckily it was still in stock with the same supplier, so we ordered some more and had it laid on the basement stairs and into its hallway.

Dark Flooring for the Cinema Room

The cinema room also really needed to be carpeted but we felt the sandy tone was too light for a room that needed a dark ambience. After some searching we found a carpet in a similar weave that was in a rich chocolate shade – this was perfect. It created a warm environment that was ideal for watching a film on a big screen.

Travertine Tiles

That just left the bathroom and store room/future kitchen. Neither of these spaces had any natural light, so we decided not to go too dark either in flooring or wall or ceiling décor. Eventually, we decided to completely tile the shower room. We wanted to use a natural product but limestone broke our budget. In the end, we opted for a very light Travertine.

This looked fantastic. In fact, we were so pleased that we decided to run it on into the kitchen. It was a bit of a luxury while the room was not really being used for anything much but we knew that one day we would be able to fit a beautiful kitchen in here that would look superb against the stylish flooring.

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