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This dated basement apartment came complete with a harvest gold and avocado kitchen and veneer wall paneling. There was a working fireplace, but its low, ornate fa┴ade didn't suit our dream theme. White floor tiles throughout were in good shape and they would stay.
The biggest challenge in small spaces is always lack of storage cupboards and cabinets. The result is a cluttered, unorganized living area that hasn't a chance of looking good.
Our challenge was to transform Nico's drab basement apartment into the place of his dreams -- a Manhattan Loft. He loves the sleek, minimal look, and this we provided with a winning combination of built-in storage, movable wall panels, a modern Murphy bed and a revamped fireplace. The contemporary mix of black paint, white floors, plenty of steel trim and hot orange accents makes this bachelor pad irresistibly cool. And all this was accomplished on a New Jersey budget!
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The Bed Wall
Wall units from Moblier Boomrang allow you to custom fit both bed and storage into a small space. The bed lifts into position in the wall when not in use. We designed a sexy, faux-leather headboard to kick up the Big City ambiance. Cut MDF to the size of headboard you want, and lay it flat on a work surface. Cut batting and faux leather fabric a little wider and longer than the headboard. Place the batting on the fiberboard, then cover with fabric; staple along top only. To make the round ridges, cut PBC tubes in half, the width of the headboard, and insert between the batting and board. Staple in place and repeat with next tube, building a row of horizontal ridges. Place 1/4" aluminum rods between the ridges to cover staples, and frame with a wood border.
Cabinets & Trim
Black and steel reign in the Manhattan-chic kitchen. Cabinets were remodeled with black paint, aluminum trim and silver hardware. To heighten the modern look, the backsplash is stainless steel cut to fit and trimmed with black rubber, and the black countertop has been edged in steel.
The old fireplace was replaced with a zero-clearance insert that sits flush with the luminous new paneled wall. Alabaster is all the rage, but costs a fortune, so we created our own take with Lumigraf's translucent plastic panels, which are glued to Plexiglas and lit from behind. 1-inch aluminum square channels were attached with L- and T-brackets to build the panel grid, and the plastic panels were attached to the grid with heavy duty Velcro.
Black felt slipcovers on the couch have a masculine feel, a perfect place for the guys to watch soccer on the flat-screen TV. Hot orange chairs and accessories liven up the stark black and white color scheme.
Movable Door Panels
Three door panels were built and installed into a sliding door rail to divide the kitchen and living areas. To build each door panel, cut two strips of 1/4" thick straight bar steel molding to match the height of the doorway, minus 6" (to leave space for hardware on top and a 3-inch gap at the bottom.) Determine the space you want between the slats, and cut lengths of 1" x 6" pine to fill the space; pre-drill pilot holes into the bars; attach pine slats to bars using inch-long wood screws. Hang from door railing with J-hooks.
The white horizontal shades are perfect for basement windows.
To make the soccer table, cut a circle from 1/2" plywood for the top. Draw the pattern you want onto the plywood, transfer the measurements and cut pieces from 1/2" fiberboard. The pieces should fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. The soccer ball motif has a black pentagon with 12-inch sides in the center, five hexagons measuring out from the pentagon, and rounded triangles to complete the circle at the perimeter. The puzzle pieces were painted, varnished and glued into place. Metal automotive trim finishes the edges of this funky design, which sits on a steel base.
The painted wall stripes are the same width as the door panel slats, which emphasizes the linear design of the room.