DESIGN PROBLEM – SETTING THE MOOD FOR GUESTS
Everyone wants guests to feel welcomed (for a little while anyway). Since all parents and all but one sibling lived out of town, we made sure our house plans included a guest suite. When we finally finished the basement, I wanted guests to feel like their space was truly separate from the entertaining area. This meant more than just a door for delineation.
DESIGN PRINCIPLE – ENCLOSED SPACES FEEL PRIVATE
Creating a mood, feel, ambience requires intentional design choices. Any of the main design elements (space, line, form, color, light, texture) can be used, and often in combination. Separate and intimate were my main goals for the guest space. A long hallway (space) certainly would have provided separateness. But like most, I was restricted by layout. I also considered a hallway using earthy materials like stone on the walls (form/texture) to provided a sense of enclosure/intimacy.
HOW I APPLIED DESIGN ELEMENTS TO ENHANCE MOOD
In the end, I decided to use an often overlooked area – the ceiling! By putting a dark wood on the ceiling I used color to enclose the space for intimacy. As well, the different material (texture) from the rest of the basement defined it as separate. Further, by using wood rather than another material like corrugated steel with a patina, it kept the space warm and cozy as a guest space should feel. To top it off, I used the exact same wood as was used for the main level flooring. Repeating the material helped make this separate basement area remain cohesive with the rest of the house.
LOWER CEILINGS FOR MOOD IN AN ORNATE STYLE
Option to Wood Ceiling Planks
If retrofitting a ceiling with wood planks seems a little too daunting, no worries. I used a similar approach to the eating area in the basement. I found a beautiful wood wall panel at a local consignment store (same one where I found the china hutch used in this repurpose). Instead of wall art, I decided to use it as a DIY ceiling light!
- The shape helped define the sitting area in a very open basement.
- The color was dark to help lower the ceiling for a more cozy feel.
- The material was wood, which is used all throughout our Prairie/Craftsman/Mission house.
- The style was very Asian, which fit with our other Global accents.
Option to Wood Decor Panel
I know – you’re thinking “bully for you, but where am I going to find something like that”? Got you covered with something that I was going to use myself if I hadn’t found this beauty. Garden trellis. Yup, garden trellis. It’s relatively inexpensive, and comes in different shapes and sizes. A wood trellis is easy to paint or stain to your color scheme. As well, it’s easy to add embellishments for personalized style. If your style isn’t farmhouse or cottage, I would simply recommend cutting off the ‘legs’ of the trellis.
Appliques (Architectual Depot is a great resource, and not an affiliate) painted in gold pop against the blue trellis above. Want even more feminine or glam? You can drape scarves, beads, or ribbons and the lattice work makes it easy! I like acrylic garland from Save on Crafts as it comes in long lengths (not an affiliate either). Need it larger? You can attach 3 metal connection braces along the back edges that won’t be seen from below. Simply add hooks to the trellis and ceiling and attach with chains at each corner.
Want to see my DIY wall décor for the guest bedroom just beyond the hall? Don’t forget to get access to the Style Library to understand how I distinguished personal living spaces like this guest bedroom from the more public areas with color choices.
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