Basement Remodel Update

When I last showed you the bar area in my basement, there was hardly anything done.  The bar had been removed and had gotten a facelift with ceiling tin.  Here’s where it stands now after 3 weeks.  Time crawls like a snail at Chez Abrams.


It’s been studded out and readied for the electrician and drywall.

Studding out the walls

Just for the record, I went and got this stud…er….stud installer, otherwise known as a handyman, a real step stool to stand on.  I didn’t want his wife and children missing their bread winner due to a fall in my basement!  I mean, I know all about ladder-falling men, right?  He asked me to plug his facebook page, to which, I will happily obliged.  Zimmerman Renovations is the name of his game.

Fireplace before

This is the fireplace before any work was done to it.  I asked Mr. Studly to knock it down about a foot.  As it stood, it was way above eye level.  A good designer just can’t have that, now, can we? How would you ever be able to see all the cool things I plan to display on the top of it?  Unless maybe you got an overturned bucket to stand on.

fireplace mantel

I know the pictures are blurry and bad, but you can see that he took out about a foot of concrete and brick and it has since been sheet rocked.  (Side note: we were SO disappointed that he didn’t unbury any secret gold caches or secret memoirs of one of Butte’s copper kings; all we found were a few gum wrappers circa 1975.) I have plans to build a new mantel with plywood, crown molding and vintage porch posts.  We’ll see how that turns out.   It’s starting to get lighter in here!

Drywall progress

Since my last update, we’ve had the electrician in here to remove a series of lights that were all around the perimeter of the room. They were strung together with all of the conduit showing.  Yack!  Didn’t like it…it had to go.  He’s also added several new outlets since previously we only had two in the whole room!

Floor shot

I had no intention of re-finishing the wood floors, but they have really taken a beating.  I think I’m going to attempt to do it myself….possibly with the help of Mr. Wonderful.  Say a prayer for me.  Neither of us relish getting dirty…and it’s going to get very dirty and dusty in here.  Oy!  After writing that (but not publishing it) two days ago, we have since hired a “wood guy” to do the work for us.  He should get started this afternoon.  And the dust flies again!

Window seat removed

Your’e looking at a spot next to the fireplace where a window seat was removed.   Again, no buried treasure here!  What’s up with that?  What’s the point of having an old house if you can stumble across stuff like that?  Anyhoo, there was one on each side of the fireplace.  They were nasty and gross inside and we never, ever used them.  Just too yucky!  Mr. Wonderful pulled them out and we are having Mr. Studly build some bookcases in their stead.  Together, we will come up with a design to embellish the bookcases that will incorporate the new fireplace mantel.  I’ve never designed anything close to a fireplace mantel and Pinterest wasn’t coughing up much inspiration, oddly enough…..I’m on my own trying to design it, I guess.

So, that’s where we are with the basement.  Some progress, but not much.

Speaking of progress, it’s also been quite a while since I’ve updated you on The Backyard Bungalow, the Shop.  We’ve expanded into two new rooms!  I spent all day yesterday and several hours on Saturday arranging and re-arranging new finds with friends.  I’ve also ordered a bunch of new wholesale stuff that I hope arrives before this Friday.  It’s all very exciting….except for the fact that I am hemorrhaging money. That part hurts…a lot.  But that’s to be expected with a new business.  My hope is that Butte will support my new venture and reward me with sales!!  Hopefully, I can take a minute to get some pictures to post soon.

Bye from the bungalow,



  1. I know how you feel about not unearthing anything…we ripped out a window seat and found…a Burger King bag. We were sorely disappointed.

  2. Looks like some serious progress girl. I am looking forward to seeing your mantel…sounds very cool. Good for you for hiring a wood guy! You are way too pretty to be sanding floors. I was lucky enough to find treasures in an attic of a rental property we bought. You don’t want to know what I had to do to salvage them all though…ugh! Be careful what you wish for!

  3. I see a vintage gum wrapper chain in your future.

  4. Well crap…no secret diary from the past.
    I do see a handy man with a nice butt.
    His wife is a smart lady!
    Glad you hired a wood man…just don’t let Karen come around or you’ll be in trouble. ; )

  5. It’s starting to come together!!

    It is going to be amazing!!

    Have a blessed and wonderful day!!

  6. What a job, but looking good. Oh that poor floor … I bet it will be beautiful when all cleaned up.
    Anxious to see what you do to the fireplace.
    Audrey Z. @ Timeless Treasures

  7. I would sell my first born for a basement, I’m sorry there were no buried treasures but you got a stud so win some lose some 😉 thanks for linking with me at Freaking Awesome Fridays. BTW my husband would sell the first born for a personal bar!

  8. Oh to have a studder….you lucky girl. hehe Don’t you love how drywall brightens up everything? Looking good Jean. Visiting from The Mellywood Mansion. Have a great weekend!

  9. Jean,
    You are so lucky to have that gorgeous wood ceiling AND a wood floor in your basement. Our house is a craftsman bungalow as well and we have neither. A painted grey concrete floor and dark floor joists for the ceiling. And lets not forget a lovely fireplace you have as well. Yep, the sun is shining on you,girl!

  10. Your basement is going to be fabulous…I see it already. Looking forward to seeing the finished room and your beautiful mantel.

  11. Do you think Mr Studly would like to visit me in Detroit? I can’t believe how much you have finished. Be glad you didn’t do the floors yourself. It will be worth every penny to have them done for you. It’s all looking great and you are going to be in beautiful basement heaven before you know it!

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