Couple Transforms Basement Into Usable Living Space

Couple Transforms Basement Into Usable Living Space

Posted by Rebecca Parsons on

Karl and Hannah Wallick were in the process of renovating their basement when the need for shelves arose. The project began with the goal of converting their basement into a space that served multiple purposes: guest room, television room, and two home offices. The project was an ambitious one, but the couple knew that a set of shelves to help transfigure the space into one that was equal parts useful and easy on the eyes. 

Karl is an architect and professor and works from home one to two days per week. Hannah is a summer camp director and works from home daily and regularly takes Zoom calls from her home office, so they wanted a background that looked nice. Additionally, they didn’t want papers and work in progress to be an eye sore while watching tv or when having guests over. 

After perusing social media, the couple found Modern Shelving on social media. At first, they thought the units were too modern for their taste, but after seeing the wide array of shelves, desks, and storage options, they were sold.

Their goal was to find a contemporary style desk and shelves, but they ultimately settled on a walnut-like finish. They chose stock cabinets with custom aluminum legs to fulfill the look and functional needs they were after. They worked with the Modern Shelving team to bring their vision to life and once they were happy with the design, they placed their order.

It took a while for all of the pieces to arrive and swap out some broken items, but once they did, Karl got to work assembling everything himself. No stranger to furniture assembly projects, Karl did fine with the install but felt if someone wasn’t experienced it would be a good idea to hire someone to ensure the job went smoothly. 

Before they began the renovation, their basement sported dark wood with vinyl floor, giving a classic 70s style vibe—it felt like a teen hang zone or a hobby room at best. After the reno, the basement features mirror image desks and shelves and serves as an office/tv room/guest room, adding greatly to the usable space in the home.

“The shelves look great so we are very happy with how they turned out,” says Karl. “This is now the most popular room in the house and gets the most use from everyone, which is surprising since it's in the basement. It helps that we have decent natural lighting too.” 

The Wallicks use their shelf setup to house their office equipment such as computers, paperwork, and files. On the shelves, they display their collections, photos, artworks, and books. They’re still figuring out what to do with all of their cables but are hopeful that Modern Shelving will offer some sort of removable cable management grommet and wire tray in the future for a more organized setup. 

“The walnut and aluminum finish definitely dress up the space and keep it from looking too neutral,” says Karl. “The focus is on the collections displayed and not the white walls of the room. It looks great and feels organized and welcoming when not being used as an office. Now if we could just find a better location for the paper shredder?!”

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