Dreary basement gets creative update
Sarah is a budding young artist whose creativity was being stifled by her dreary, 70s-style basement playroom. With psychedelic purple and orange carpeting, unflattering fluorescent lighting and lack of storage space for Sarahs craft supplies, this art studio was due for a major creative update.Seven-year-old Sarah wanted a bright new space with lots of cabinets for her arts and crafts supplies, but she also wanted a place where she could just hang out with her friends. Her mom, Diane, was happy to see the Divine Design team arrive on the scene and even happier to see the purple and orange carpeting tossed out.To turn this dim play space into a hip, inspirational hangout, I decided to divide the room into two zones: one for arts and crafts, and the other for lounging with friends. In the lounge area we applied rich buttery yellow paint to the walls and installed a warm yellow broadloom carpet. In the art zone, we painted the walls in a vibrant fuchsia and covered the floor with tough yellow sheet flooring, which will resist spills and stains.Some of the existing cabinetry in Sarahs basement studio was reusable. To reduce the appearance of clutter, I covered some open shelving with Roman blinds made from a bright, cheery floral fabric that incorporates tangerine, pink, yellow and green. The same fabric is used in cushions throughout this room and also for a large curtain that separates Sarahs space from the adjoining laundry room.We cut some of the counter space in the lounge area to make room for a TV stand, and installed lots of accessible storage cabinets, a long work surface and baskets for paints, brushes and crayons in the rooms creative zone. The white cabinetry in Sarahs workspace really stands out against the fuchsia paint and helps to break up this bright surface. In the lounge area, I created a place Sarah can call her own. Lots of soft, comfy cushions in vibrant hues are surrounded by a gauzy curtain made from a dreamy floral fabric and suspended from a curved rod. Above the cushions hangs a fun piece of artwork we created using almost every color in the rainbow. This is the perfect place for Sarah and a friend to curl up for some serious girl talk.The existing lighting came from unflattering fluorescent fixtures. So, to brighten things up, we installed under-cabinet lighting to shine down on Sarahs work surface, new track lighting to highlight a gallery wall where she can display her best work and a couple of funky hanging lanterns that flank a bright pink two-seater sofa in the lounge area. The color palette in Sarahs new creative space is fun, vibrant and inspirational. The yellow flooring, carpeting and walls flood this room with warmth. The bright fuchsia wall in the arts and crafts area energizes this space and really gets the creative juices flowing. And the rest of our color palette pink, lime, tangerine and white packs a bright punch thats perfect for a creative young girl.By designing some clutter-free cabinetry, using some girl-friendly fabrics and a bright and creative color scheme, this play space and art studio has gone from inhibiting to inspirational.Interior decorator Candice Olson is host of Home & Garden Televisions Divine Design. For more ideas, information and show times visit http://www.HGTV.com or http://www.divinedesign.tv.
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