Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Basement hall, landing pantry renovation

After last year's basement project I decided I wanted to redo the space leading down to the basement. While making the kids' hideout in the basement, I realized there was space and I could sink cabinets into the walls and utilize the area better. Think a medicine cabinet, but the depth of a kitchen cabinet.

It was difficult to get a good before shot of location. It is a small area, but it was very cluttered.  I was standing at ground level next to the side door of our house in the photo above. To the right we had some open shelves for jars, mugs and tea towels. We used a long ledge as a shelf for dry goods/spices. Closer to the door going to the kitchen we installed a pan rack that worked pretty well. To the left, we had some more open shelves. We used this for larger pots and pans, cookbooks and small kitchen appliances. In the middle are the stairs to the basement and the opening to the slide.

Here you can see I removed the rotting ledge on the left wall, the open shelves have been taken out and replaced with a store-bought kitchen cabinet. I taped a template for sizing of another cabinet to set into an (as of yet uncut) opening in the wall to the right. Our family friend Raymond came over and helped me get a fairly good opening cut using a grinder (we forgot to take a picture). The plaster/lathe made for a very messy job.

So why not make an even bigger mess? In addition to the cabinet replacing the open shelves near the door, I decided to cut the wall out under the stairs. I was happy to find a very large space. So large, in fact, I decided that it was better to clean it up and finish it, rather than just push another one foot deep cabinet into it (as I had first planned). After lots of sanding I added flooring, sheet rock walls and trim. Then Christina helped paint everything on the inside. She didn't like how the wood cabinets looked in the space and painted all of them white. Later, after much touching up of the walls, she painted all of them and ceiling in the entire space the same color as the kitchen. She also painted the door, which had always just been primed, and also repainted all the trim in the space so it would look fresh and match everything else.

I cut the back half off of a stock cabinet to use as the opening to the large pantry space. As you look inside, you can see Christina painted the underside of the stairs and walls white and the flooring blue.

Here is is all painted (sans cabinet pulls). I replaced the board under the double cabinet and routered the edge to match the ledge board I replaced by the stairs.

Again, not the best photos due to the space, but you can see the cabinet to the far left, then the cabinet door that opens to the large "pantry" space we finished under the stairs, followed by the stairway and the cabinet I sank in the wall on the right. On the far right we decided to take down the wall shelving all together. We replaced the ledge board with a nice piece of poplar and some more trim.

Complete! We have much more cabinet space now and the area looks a lot cleaner and brighter than before. It's nice to have everything out of sight, yet still easily accessible.

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