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Build a Basement Play Area

Do you find yourself tripping over toys or constantly reminding the kids to pick them up and put them away? If you have an unfinished basement then you have an answer to the toy dilemma! Transform that dank dungeon into a bright play space. Give your kids a place to play, create, run off energy and host sleepovers. It’s easier than you think! Consider the following suggestions.

Flooring: Most people think wall to wall carpeting for a child’s playroom as it’s soft, comfortable and helps prevent bruising in case of falls. Consider carpet squares instead. You can build interesting designs and, when spills happen, easily replace a tile or two. Foam flooring is another great choice. It comes in large tiles, installs easily, is soft, shock absorbent, affordable and available in a variety of colours. Try rubber mat flooring. It’s cushiony, durable, sound absorbing, adhesive free, environmentally friendly, easy to clean and comes in many hues.

Walls: Children’s interests, activities and preferences change as they age. Be cautious of committing to a themed playroom that’ll quickly be out of date. Opt for neutral walls and use decals to add character. They’re easily removed and can be replaced as your child ages. 

Storage should be accessible, easy to use and sufficient to contain all the toys, books, games and craft supplies your children use. Consider cubbies (open, boxlike compartments) as they allow easy access and are great for displaying collectibles or favourite toys. Wicker baskets or decorated laundry baskets conceal clutter, fit on most shelving systems, hold large or awkward items and can be moved around making clean up easier. Plastic totes are sturdy, waterproof, stackable and fit on most shelving. Clear totes allow you to see what’s inside and labels can help children quickly find articles. Ottomans and benches with storage or benches with space beneath for baskets provide seating and help organize a playroom.

Lighting: A well-lit area makes a safe play environment. Ensure there is ample ambient light. A window will allow natural light to enter and brighten the space. 

Furniture: A kid size table and chairs is a must as is seating that’s comfortable and easy to lounge on. Specialized children’s furniture is pricey. Try cutting down regular pieces to the size you desire or look for second-hand items. Consider a desk for crafting or homework. Install padding on corners to prevent injury.

Reading corner: Turn a corner into a reading nook by installing low shelves filled with books and providing soft seating (cushions, bean bag chairs, body pillows, a hanging chair, a fur rug, or a large stuffed animal to lean on). 

Art display: Show off your child’s masterpieces! Try a corkboard, a few picture frames or a clothesline with pegs. 

Dress up corner: Let your kids transform from a dinosaur to a princess! A metal hanging rack, some hooks, a basket or two, an assortment of costume or second-hand clothing and a mirror are all you need to spark your child’s imagination.

Rest area: To create a quiet, cozy space for a child to recharge and maybe even nap, nestle a small daybed or large pillow with blankets in a corner.

Playground: Help your children get the required 60 minutes of daily physical activity with the addition of a swing, slide, climbing apparatus and/or monkey bars. Add a baby pool and some plastic balls for a mini ball pit. 

Under the stairs: Don’t let that space under the stairs go to waste. Make it a playhouse. Add an interesting and enticing door. 

Adult area: Create a place for adults to relax and keep an eye on the children. A sofa, a desk, an adjacent laundry room or a nearby home gym will help you spend time near your kids. Consider joining in the fun! 

With a little work and imagination, your unfinished basement can become a bright, safe, comfortable playroom for frolicking, crafting, reading and hanging with friends. Your kids will love it!When you’re ready to create the playroom of your child’s dreams, call the Calgary basement experts, Econo Basements at (403) 768-0256 or email at