How to Install Vinyl Floors in the Basement - BEFORE/AFTER

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I’m so excited to share some before and afters of the room in my basement! So my house is pretty small, but the basement is HUGE! A lot of the space isn’t usable for rooms per say, but there is this one room that was already there, but just need some love. It had brown paneling, unfinished floors, and old windows.

New Windows

First thing I did was get new windows. The windows were original to the house, and while I love the look of wood windows, I wanted to feel safer in my house, and also have it better insulated. I had a lot of issues with bugs downstairs and just it being really hot, so I think the new windows really makes the room look more finished and in much better shape!

Left: before and after of the window trim being painted, right: how the other windows look on the outside.

Left: before and after of the window trim being painted, right: how the other windows look on the outside.

Paint

Next, I gave everything a fresh coat of paint and cleaned the room. I painted the cinder blocks that were gray to white to match the room and also painted all the brown paneling. I used the same color as upstairs with Behr, Snowy Pine. While the room looked 10x better with fresh paint, it definitely gave off a little bit of a creepy vibe not having the finished floors, so those were next!

Before/after: Painted the paneling, installed the new floors and trim.

Before/after: Painted the paneling, installed the new floors and trim.

Installing Vinyl Floors

So some of you may be intimidated to install flooring yourself, but I promise it really wasn’t so bad. A few things that I did to prepare:

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Supplies

Duralux Signature Hickory - I had a 100 sq ft room so I got 3 boxes

Laminate Flooring Kit

Trim

Shoe Trim

T square (Use for cutting pieces in a straight line)

Cutting mat

Utility knife

Measuring tape

Wood glue or nails for the trim

Caulk

To Prepare

  1. Level the floors - This is only needed if you’re putting Vinyl in the basement and you think the floors aren’t leveled. This is probably only an issue with older houses, but you want to make sure you’re installing the flooring on a flat, level surface.

  2. Clean - I swept any extra debris out of the room and made sure the surface was ready for flooring.

  3. Decide on type of vinyl flooring - There are a lot of different types of vinyl flooring that you can choose from for your home. You can do stick and peel, groutable, floating, and more. I chose the floating option because it has the interlocking pieces and sounded like the best option for my project. Floating vinyl is also waterproof and that was important to me since it was going in the basement.

  4. Buy your supplies - Once you decide on the type of Vinyl flooring, you can do the fun part of picking out a floor! I bought my flooring at Floor & Decor. I got the Duralux floating vinyl in Signature Hickory. It happened to be the cheapest option and my favorite color, so that worked out. You want to make sure you also get 10% more flooring that you need to account for any mess ups or cutting you will be doing. I also bought a flooring kit to help with laying the floors that can be helpful.

  5. Buy trim - I went to Lowe’s for the trim. I got this trim as well as some shoe trim. Since my floor has a good gap between the wall in some places I thought it would look better and cover that space by adding shoe trim, but that is not required.

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How to Install

  1. Start in the farthest corner from door. Make sure your floor will run in the direction of the longest wall. Using the flooring kit, take some tabs and space the floor away from the wall. This is important to allow the floor to have room to expand/contract.

  2. Add the next piece to the end of the first and interlock the pieces together. You can use your hammer or mallet to knock the piece to make sure it’s tightly locked. Continue until you reach the opposite wall.

  3. To start the next row, you’ll want to cut a piece in half to stagger the seams. To do this, take your cutting mat, measure the halfway point and then use a t square to mark that point and use as your ruler. This ensures a straight cut. Take a utility knife and run it a couple times. Then you can pick up the piece and snap it in half.

  4. Continue along laying the floor ensuring that you reinforce the pieces on the long edge and short edge to make sure everything is interlocked tightly. Make sure to completely each row to the other end completely before moving on to another row. It will be hard to go back and add pieces if you do not.

  5. Continue on until you’ve completed the whole room!

  6. At the door, you’ll want to install a reducer to go from vinyl fo the sub floor if they are different heights. I found a matching color and cut it to size of the door frame.

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Bathroom Makeover Breakdown

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Today I’m sharing with you guys everything in my bathroom and how I got there! I’ve slowly been working on this since I moved in and I finally feel like it’s at a good place (just need to resurface the bathtub and change out the shower hardware). I’m sharing all of my sources as well as progress pictures and where it is today!

Sources

Mirror: Target
Soap Dispenser & Canister: Target
Faucet: Wayfair
Vanity Light: Wayfair
Vanity: Ikea
Grout Painter: Grout Renew
Shower Curtain: older but I like this and this
Artwork: Claire Cormany
Towel Hardware: Anthropologie
Shelf Brackets: Lowe’s

Some of the easiest and simple changes I did was adding new hardware and light fixtures. Changing out lighting is not as daunting as it seems! Once you learn how to match the blue wire to the other blue wire it really it’s a pretty simple change! I also didn’t realize changing the faucet would be so simple. We just took out the old one and screwed the new one on no problem! If you are every looking for ways to up the value of your house this is the best and most cost effective way!

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Here’s the art I hung up on this wall to just give it a pop of color in here!

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These shelves were so easy to make! I got the guys at Lowe’s to cut the wood to size, stained them and then bought these brackets and wa-la! Found this basket in the $1 and it’s also great storage area for toilet paper, cotton balls, and extra towels.

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Patio Makeover REVEAL for under $750

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It’s finally here! My near completed patio makeover! This project has been in the making slowly for the last couple of months and I finally got some furniture to complete the look! I’m excited to share all the before and after photos and sources of the everything! Hope you enjoy!

P.S. I’m not done with the backyard yet. This is just phase 1!

Price Breakdown (and linked sources!)

Planter paint - $35 (Sherwin Williams - Caviar in Flat)
Plants - $100 (Mahonias and Coral Bells)
Bistro Set - $200 (After 30% off + 5% Target debit card)
Ikea Table Set - $200
Target Door Lights - $10
Door Paint - $3 (Sherwin Williams Isle of Pines in Satin)
String Lights - $80 ( I got 3 sets)

Cleaning up the patio

I first started off by cleaning up all the random things lying around as well as pressure washing! Pressure washing made such a huge difference. I got all the mildew off the planters and all the dirt off the concrete. It cleaned up the space to make it nice and clean for me to work on. My parents had recently bought a pressure washer, so I was able to use that, but you can also rent one.

Here is the pressure washer we used:  amazon.com

Here is the pressure washer we used: amazon.com

Painting the Planters

Next up was painting the planters. I knew I wanted to add a modern contrast and since cinder blocks are not very attractive I thought the perfect solution was to paint them! I chose a black paint color that I think turned out pretty great. I got (THIS COLOR INSERT HERE) It holds up really well under weather, and since this wall was prone to algae and moss, this was a good option and worked so well!

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Installing Plants

Next up was putting in plants! I must confess, I am HORRIBLE with plants. I kill just about everything I have bought plant wise, so I was determined to buy plants that will live and thrive. This is a pretty shady spot, so I wanted something low maintenance and also shade tolerant. I went to Collier’s Nursery in Birmingham, and they were SO helpful helping me find the right plants. I’ve been to other nurseries that I had to hunt down people and then even those people weren’t knowledgable, so it was a relief to have someone know what they were talking about. I ended up going with Mahonias (The palm tree like plant) and Coral Bells in both red and bright green to add some color. The Mahonias will get 3-4ft tall and fill out the space, and the Coral Bells will also double in size.

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I also planted some Hosta seeds on the narrow wall and they are thriving! They are just little sprouts still, but I surprised how well they’re doing! I think they love all the rain we’ve been having.

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Installing Lights

One thing I knew I wanted were lights! They just add so much to the atmosphere and I just imagined having dinner parties outside under the lights. I found these on Amazon, and I opted to get the slightly more expensive lights because I wanted the glass to hold up to the weather and the lights to last forever.

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Painting the Door

Once I painted the planters, I knew I needed to change the door color. I wanted to paint a fun color so I got a $3 sample of Sherwin Williams Isle of Pines. I’m in LOVE with this green color and so happy I changed to it!

Paint color:  Sherwin Williams Isle of Pines , Doormat: Target (old), Lights:  Target

Paint color: Sherwin Williams Isle of Pines, Doormat: Target (old), Lights: Target

Adding Furniture!

Lastly I bought some furniture to finish out the space! I searched for a long time on finding affordable dining furniture. I feel like every table set was over $500, until I checked out Ikea! I got this set for $200 for table and chairs! I also picked up a little bistro set from Target that was 30% off plus my extra 5% off with my Target Debit card and made it out to be $200 as well. I still plan on possibly adding a couch, but that will have to come later!

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After

And we’re done!! So happy to show you all the final reveal pictures!

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