A dark and dingy Mequon, WI basement is now the most popular area of this family’s home. This finished basement enhances and expands their living area, giving them a relaxing space for watching movies together and a separate, swanky bar area for watching sports games. The design creatively uses reclaimed barnwood throughout the space, including ceiling beams, the staircase, the face of the bar, the TV wall in the seating area, open shelving and a sliding barn door. The highlight of the space is the colorful LED lighting under the bar shelves.
Before the remodel, this Wisconsin basement was only used for storage and laundry. The homeowners wanted to extend the living space of their home into their unfinished basement. They were looking for a space that was both comfortable for relaxing, with an upscale design.
Client’s Basement Wish List
- Create a masculine entertaining bar area
- Design a comfortable seating area for watching movies
- Rebuild the staircase to match the style of the other stairs in the home (white risers and wood treads)
- Build a sliding barn door to separate the finished area from the unfinished area
- Use barnwood in the space
- Make the space feel warm and inviting while using raw, natural materials
Barnwood Basement Remodel
The client wanted a masculine bar area for hosting friends and family. It’s the perfect space for watching games and serving drinks. The bar area features hickory cabinets with a granite stain, quartz countertops and an undermount sink. There is plenty of cabinet storage, floating shelves for displaying bottles/glassware, a wine shelf and beverage cooler. The homeowner has adequate space for prepping food and drinks. The bar includes four stools for guest seating.
The most notable feature of this Wisconsin bar is the color changing LED strip lighting under the shelves. The lights illuminate the cream city brick wall. Cream city brick is found throughout Milwaukee and became popular during the 19th century. The lighting makes the space feel upscale and swanky to create a great atmosphere when the homeowners are entertaining.
Lighting is an important component of this space, as this basement is dark with no windows or natural light. Recessed lights throughout the room are on dimmers. An overhead light fixture and recessed cans light the living room. Pendants light the bar.
Craftsmanship & Innovation
Barnwood Sourcing & Millwork
We sourced all the barnwood from a Wisconsin barn to make sure all the wood matched. We custom milled the wood for:
- Stairs, newel posts & railings
- Ceiling beams
- Bar face
- Wood accent wall behind the TV
- Floating bar shelves
- Sliding barn door
The stairway is completely rebuilt, constructed with 4″x4″ salvaged posts and 2″x6″ railings. The treads are made from 2″x12″ structural barn beams. The new stairs matched the style of the other stairs in the home, with white risers and wood treads. All pieces were milled down on site. The wood is coated with conversion lacquer to finish the staircase.
Barn Door Construction
Our team constructed the sliding barn door that separated the finished space from the laundry and storage area. The homeowners provided some pictures of the desired look. We designed the door, brought the raw material on site for construction, and installed the top-mounted sliding track.
This barnwood basement remodel was a total transformation. We turned the unfinished space into an extension of the entire home, giving the family a comfortable living room and sleek bar.
- The color changing LED strip lighting under the shelves in the bar area illuminates the cream city brick wall. The lighting makes the space feel upscale and swanky to create a great atmosphere.
- We sourced all the barnwood from the same torn down barn and custom milled the wood throughout the space.
- The stairway is completely rebuilt, constructed with salvaged wood to match the style of the other stairs in the home.
- We designed, built and installed the custom sliding barn door.
- The entire basement uses reclaimed barnwood in the design. The natural wood elements warm up the space, making it feel cozy and comfy.
- The homeowner has a masculine bar area for entertaining guests.
- The family can relax together in the comfortable living room.
Remodeler of the Year Award
This project won a ‘Remodeler of the Year’ Award from the Milwaukee National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) in 2018.
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