Basement Rec Room Ideas
A basement rec room is the ideal space for entertaining family and friends. Discover your personal style with these tips for making the space your own.
While a rec room is, naturally, designed as an area to have fun, it can also be a space that sports a particular style.
Start by deciding on a layout for your rec room. Assess your basement space so you can use it to its fullest potential, and think about how furniture will be arranged in order to make guests comfortable. You may also want to decide on a theme for the rec room. Perhaps, you want it to look like an old-style billiards room or maybe it will simply be a place for your weekly family game nights. Those elements are important to deciding the style of your rec room.
Soft Seating Area
To keep the 1950s charm original to her family's split level ranch house, visual merchandiser and stylist Justine Rubin left its tongue-and-groove wood paneled walls as-is, then decorated the room with colorful, kid-friendly furnishings. Sons Felix and Reyn are encouraged to create and craft in the space since it's packed with low-maintenance, easy-to-clean pieces.
DIY Lemonade Stand
Always eager to upcycle, Justine gave new life to old wooden shipping pallets by turning them into a lemonade stand. After collecting discarded pallets and scrap wood, the stand was constructed by cutting wood to size with a saw, then fastening each piece together using 3- inch wood screws and a drill.
Tree Trunk Seating
For sturdy occasional seating, Justine and her sons added paint to discarded tree trunk scraps leftover by a tree cutting service. In addition to the stools being the perfect height and width for little ones to play on, the stools can also serve double duty as pint-sized occasional tables.
Hardy Outdoor Furniture
With markers, paint brushes and crayons used on a daily basis, Felix and Reyn's crafting station is made up of indoor-outdoor furniture. Easy to wipe and sturdy enough to handle active boys and their occasional roughhousing, the area is outfitted with chairs made of woven resin, molded plastic and welded steel, along with a wood-slat-and-aluminum table.
After dark, the craft area stays lit with an original flush mount light fixture original to the 1950s house. TIP: Anytime original fixtures are left in older basements, it's best to invest in having the wiring updated by a professional electrician. This will prolong the life of the lighting while also ensuring safety.
Painted Fireplace Update
To modernize the dated fireplace original to the 1950s-era house, Justine updated it with charcoal paint in a flat finish. For an even application, she used a roller made for rough surfaces. This cuts down on the number of coats needed since the nap of the roller ensures proper coverage.
If you have a large family and plan on the room serving a multi-use purpose, then decide how the room should be divided. Maybe there is a small fitness area for some members of the family, and an arts and crafts space for those who enjoy quieter activities.
Consider also adding warmth to the space by installing a rug or carpet, and adding a lighting design that will highlight specific areas throughout the rec room, like the pool table area or playroom for kids. Be sure to also take proper measurements for all furniture and appliances that will be added to the room — it's no fun when you purchase a piece only to find out it won't fit through the door!
See also: Planning a Basement Remodel
- Before You Hire a Basement Pro
- Ideas for Basement Rooms
- Adding a Basement Kitchen
- Is Your Family Ready for a Big Storm?
- Basement Remodeling Costs
- Female-Friendly Retreat for Dad