Monday, November 18, 2013

Closing a staircase (part II) + building a laundry folding counter

Hi friends,

This is part II from my basement staircase makeover series. If you missed part I, you can read about it here or watch the video.

This past week end, I continued working on the staircase, mostly painting. I finished all the walls with the same Behr Grape Vine color I used for the kitchen.
Because the stairs are used daily - to go to the laundry room etc. I could not paint in one shot, so I decided to paint every other steps first, let them dry and then paint the other steps.

This is the original color of the steps - it was some kind of maroon the previous owner had used throughout the house. While it is historically accurate for colonial homes in the US, I just hated it and this was the last of the maroon invasion at our home!


For paint, I used Behr Enamel in Bitter Chocolate.

And here is the final result (we are now officially maroon free!)

Last week end, if you recall, we closed off the staircase in order to keep drafts out of the basement, not to mention all the dirt that was falling through the bars onto my desk!

Here is a shot of the staircase before we closed it:

And after last week end's project:

Here it is, all finished!

Another project this week end was to create a counter to fold laundry. Our laundry, as mentioned before, is in the basement. Because there was no real flat surface large enough to fold clothes, we would end up bringing clothes upstairs and fold them on the dining room table.

I had previously placed two bookcases at an angle, near the laundry room, and thought it was the perfect spot to create a counter, using the bookcases as support.
I had one large piece of plywood left over from a previous project which allowed me to complete this one without spending a dime!

Here you can see one of the bookcases I am using as a support. I trimmed the wood so that it would overhang by 1.75 inch on all three sides.

To round the corners, I traced around the silver cap from one of my Bath and Body Works candles.

I also hand sanded the edges to ensure no one would get injured or clothes would not get snagged on the wood, etc..

Here it is ready to be mounted onto the wall and the bookcases.

In order to secure my counter, I used a 1x3 piece of wood and mounted that onto the resting wall. I then used deck screws to attached the top part of the counter directly into that strip of wood. For extra security, I used finishing nails directly into the bookcases underneath.

Here is it, painted and complete:

I am using the bookcases to store all my college books in one place and from the other side (where the sofa and family room is situated) it looks like a bookcase cube! Pretty neat!

Want to know and see more about these two projects? Here are two videos explaining it all.
Thanks for watching!

Part II: Finishing the Staircase Wall

Part III: Staircase and laundry counter

Sophia, NJ

You can find me on FACEBOOK and YOUTUBE


*This site and post contains affiliate advertising. I am not affiliated with Behr brand or Bath and Body Works. I am affiliated with Amazon and will receive a small commission on purchases made through their site. All opinions are my own.



  1. Hi Sophia - what a fantastic job you have done with your basement, really love the ideas you have (you are NOT a crazy woman!!), in particular when you use/make things yourself. There is too much "throwing away stuff" in this world. I totally agree with you regarding throwing books away. Really loved when your dogs were messing about on the settee, like mischievous children, and when you told them off - their reaction seemed to say "it wasn't us, we weren't doing anything wrong, honest Mum". Priceless!! I think you are one inspirational lady - look forward to seeing the basement/family room finished. Lorna, North Lincs, UK

  2. Thank you Lorna, I am constantly picking up unwanted stuff, I hate it when it's just about the holidays and the week end prior folks in my town get rid of perfectly good furniture because they have visitors and want to show off with new stuff...A lot of my home antiques are street finds with a new home...and I love them!

    1. Just looked at your kids room makeover - going to copy the idea you had with the Lego drawers/table top, but going to have the drawers deep enough to store all my husband's Railway Magazines vertically with a dated organising system (and there are hundreds of them, then we will start on all the families collection of books!!). Lorna

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I welcome your feedback and comments. If you have a question or a specific request, do not hesitate, I am here to help! Thanks, S.

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