Actually, the title should read "Rec Room DO." Because there is really no re-doing to it since it's never been done. We've lived here 2 years and are FINALLY able to enjoy our downstairs den. And I do mean ENJOY. In fact, I have asked Chad if we could just move into the guest room down here and make it the master bedroom. To which he immediately replied NO. But I will work on him. Just you wait.
This is what the room looked like when we moved in...
And of course, Chad immediately thought "YES! MAN ROOM!" because it is downstairs and because it had an outlet in the ceiling, which, to a man, meant that the room was destined for theater seating with cupholders and a 100-inch projector screen and a mini fridge and ash trays for the cigars that he would not be allowed to smoke. So the first thing we did was to paint the walls a manly chocolate brown. To match all of the awesome manly furniture that did not yet exist. And would not exist until 2 years later. And the next thing we did (well, Chad did) was to immediately start saving his pennies for the 100-inch projector and screen.
I will say that we did not spend a dime on furniture and I am ever so thankful for that. We claimed my grandparents' old couch and love seat, in their lovely hues of navy blue and hot pink (I am SO not kidding) and I found slipcovers for 50% off at WalMart. They are the WalMart brand (Mainstays I think??) and are a faux-suede material in a khaki-ish color. I am pretty happy with them despite their wrinklyness. And I have sprayed them thoroughly with Scotch Guard since my toddler and toddlerdog tend to be a bit messy.
When Chad's grandparents moved out of their apartment they offered us their coffee table and 2 end tables. I LOVED these pieces because they were HUGE, made of REAL wood, and would allow for TONS of storage. However, they were a brownish color with brass hardware and a glossy finish, which just didn't go quite as well with the room. But I knew they had potential so I researched a bit on re-doing furniture and found that Miss Rhoda over at Southern Hospitality has multiple posts on re-doing things, and in particular a post entitled "PAINTING FURNITURE BLACK" which immediately caught my eye. And I am already a HUGE fan of spray paint, so I opted to go that route. (Don't worry - I wore a very tight-fitting mask and tried not to breathe the entire time.)
So here are the coffee and end tables BEFORE... (the end tables are the square ones, and they remind me of what the Ark of the Covenant may have looked like. And I assure you, they are just as heavy.) In the third picture, the coffee table is being used as an entertainment center.
And here they are in the process of being transformed...
Oh, and I also had a tall piece of furniture with drawers (I think they call these "high boys" or something like that) that was given to us by a teacher friend of my mom's. It has been downstairs for a while now. It was a darker mahogany color, also with a very glossy finish and brass hardware. I sprayed her black, too. (I used Krylon spray paint from WalMart in the black satin finish.)
Since the walls are chocolate brown, the couches are khaki, and the furniture is now BLACK, I knew I needed some COLOR. In fact, I almost had a panic attack at the thought of not having bright colors anywhere, since the rest of my house closely resembles a large wall of paint swatches. So I chose to accent with bright colors. I used bright throw pillows on the couches (pillows I've had for a gazillion years from my dorm/apartment years). I also found these 16x20 frames with 8x10 mattes at Big Lots and blew up some pictures of Mary Ella.
(Notice HighBoy in all her glory... black, deglossed, lovely.)
I talked Chad out of the 100-inch projector about 6 months ago, when we put our house up for sale. I figured if we ever moved, we may not have the luxury of having a downstairs room, or even a playroom or finished basement, and a projector wouldn't look so appealing in a bedroom or family room. So although he was a little bummed, and his dreams of watching Alabama Football on a screen as big as a Honda Civic came crashing down, he was fine with it. And we agreed to just looking for a regular TV instead. And after scouring the Best Buy weekly ads for the last 6 months, a decent TV went on sale for SUPER, SUPER cheap! So cheap, in fact, that within ONE day of it going on sale, there were only 12 left in the country. So we ordered our television and picked up a cheap (think $40) particle-board entertainment center at Big Lots, and so far this television is meeting our needs just fine. (I knew it would, but a man needs a little convincing sometimes, especially when it comes to electronics and the ability of those electronics to display sporting events with perfection.)
So, the room is complete... a real life design-on-a-dime, and two years in the making! Forgive me for the un-ironed slipcovers. And please don't zoom in on the dirty carpet, as I have not yet vacuumed the room, and there are likely to be scary dust mites and most certainly Cheerios or Apple Jacks.
We are enjoying the room so much! It is so cozy down here, much more cozy than the den upstairs. I think it has something to do with having carpet instead of hardwoods down here, and the fact that the ceiling is so much lower. And it stays a little chilly down here too, so there's always a need for a blanket. Nothing like cuddling up on the couch with a warm blanket and the remote to watch all the shows you have DVR'd... (YES, I am LOVING the DVR, though I still can't get used to the fact that I can rewind/pause live TV.)
And keeping honest, the other half of the room has been designated as the play area. The messy area. I am in desperate need of an organization method for all of these toys and books, and I welcome any suggestions!