January 22, 2012

Totally psyched to have a basement of our own

Basements, as a general subject, might not be the kind of thing that reeves up most people's engines - at least not in the way that a dazzling kitchen, freshly renovated powder room, or stunning garden might.

I admit, as a whole they're usually not my absolute favourite corner of most homes (in part because the largest spider - if it wasn't a tarantula it was darn near close - I ever saw was in a basement when I was a little girl), but that certainly isn't to say that I dislike them either.

So long as they're dry, well ventilated and properly finished, basements can be fantastic places. Thus is not the case for all underground portions of homes though.

Prior to moving into our current apartment, my husband and I lived in a rather dark, nearly window-less basement (the tiny windows that were there had bars on them, which yes, I know is illegal - we didn't put them on, the homeowner did long before we moved in) for over two years. It was, to say the least, a less than wonderful experience.

When we moved into that kind of environment, we did so believing that we would only be there for a few months (max!). Little did we know that events would play out in our lives that would end up keeping us there for much longer than anticipated. When the time came at long last to move, we wanted to get as far away from dank, depressing basements as was humanly possible, and so our house hunting lead us to a high rise apartment.

This home, while far from perfect either (oh the horror stories about this building I could tell you!), was a huge improvement over our previous abode here in Toronto, and for all it's shortcomings, it has served us pretty well for the past three and half years.

Now though, as many of you know, that time has come for us to move once more. Not just from this apartment building, but from Ontario. We're headed to my home province of British Columbia and to a house, that at long last, isn't just one floor.

Finally, in a charming condo, my husband and I are going to have two floors and a basement all to ourselves. This point, as you might imagine, makes me more than a little giddy!

The basement in our new place isn't massive, but it's not super tiny either. It has plenty of room for me to create a dedicated craft space, as well areas for storage, and a washer and dryer (after years of not having laundry facilities in our home, I'm beyond thrilled about that!!!).

Though the paint (and floor colours) are not the same, and there are some other differences in certain respects (there won’t be all the woodworking and DIY equipment, for example), over all our new basement (as I've seen it in photos and videos), looks a fair bit like the 1940s one pictured below.

{Industrious and attractive, this wonderful basement from 1947 is bursting with creative possibilities and plenty of space for everyone in the household to partake in their favourite hobbies, much as our new basement will allow us to do as well. Image via saltycotton on Flickr.}

To me moving into a house with a basement, the rest of which is also ours to occupy is symbolic of how we've come over the years. Are we moving into a mansion? Goodness, no, but as I sit here now, a little over a month from our moving date, I can't help but feel like this new home is every bit as significant and meaningful as if we were.

So, dear new house basement, I look forward to our impending meeting and the fact that you are the foundation upon which our whole home - and much of our home life - will be built.


  1. Inspired! That's how I feel after my visit. My basement is in flux being redone. Your vision is inspiring.

  2. I have never lived in a house with a basement but I am sure that if I had one it would be filled! My sister has a full basement and it is packed with her junk along with her kids junk.

  3. How exciting! That's a really cool layout for the basement. I'm a big fan of storage spaces in any form and truly believe that you can turn the darkest space into a palace. Happy DIYing

  4. Oh how I covet basements! Houses in the UK very rarely have them, and I torment myself imagining all that extra space.

  5. I have to love basements - I live in one, and feel your prior pain! We have a basement flat in a big Victorian house, and as far as basement flats go, it's not too dark and dingy. We have a garden which is sunken about a metre below ground level and the ground at the front of the flat is dug out to give us light, so all in all, we don't feel too much like troglodytes!

    I look forward to the day when, like you, I can style my basement (which is only one small section of my otherwise massive house) as a 1940s utility style room :)

    All the best with the DIY! xxx

  6. How wonderful it will be for you to have a creative space of your own.....it could be dangerous though, you might need to buy more and more to fill it. I used to have a small studio packed to the rafters, then my husband built me a lovely large new studio, and guess what? it is now packed to the rafters.

    Enjoy looking forward to your new place. Isn't the anticipation of a new beginning so joyous. I'd love to see the pictures when you are all settled.



  7. I'm so excited for you, Jessica! Can't wait for even more news on the move and new place. Happy new week, dear! xo – g