We had built-ins and a fixed projector screen in the basement of our last house, but that didn’t seem like the best option in this house. Here are a couple of pictures of our last basement that I totally loved (except for the basement part - high water table+finished basement=lots of worrying). The basement was finished entirely based on the projector screen and a theater room. Loved our bar, too, even though we hardly used it. It sure was pretty!
The media room is a loft type room and can be seen from the living room, kitchen, entry – pretty much the entire first floor. Because of this, we wanted the media room to be functional, yet not completely obvious. We went on the search for a media center that fit our needs. No such luck. We couldn’t find a hutch/TV console that could support our numerous systems (weight, size, etc.), especially in our price range. And who buys a media center hutch that doesn’t need a place for a TV???? We really liked this one and it was made by Thomasville, but it was around $2,700 on sale (supposedly) and the received was too deep to fit in/on it. (WARNING: A lot of these pictures are crappy phone pictures!)
In the picture of our old theater room, the two shelf units on the right are fixed and supported the weight of our 90 pound receiver. The shelves on the left had pegs so that they could be adjusted. Since we built those shelves, we figured why not? Let’s build an entertainment center that is Texas sized the right size, height, and able to support the weight of the receiver and speakers.
I showed Aaron some ideas from Ana White’s site (she has awesome plans for DIY furniture at http://ana-white.com). But he mostly came up with the building plan. We took a page from that Thomasville piece and made part of ours stick out (not sure what the technical term is for that, but I am sure there is one). Anyway… here are some of the build pictures:
We stained it the same way we did the handrail on the staircase (only this came first – which is where we got the idea on how to stain the handrail). So this bad boy is 8 feet tall and super heavy. And I have no idea how we will move it if we ever move. But that’s ok, its perfect for what we need! We have plans to build a matching sofa table to hold the bookshelf speakers behind the couch, as well as 2 tall DVD/CD/VHS (yes, we have VHS tapes still) book cases to go on each side of the entertainment center.
And now for some talk about the projector screen, projector, and the rest of the theater room. To kick it off, here is the picture from the real estate listing:
Because you can see this room from the first floor, we wanted to have a more concealed theater room. Aaron bought the screen on Ebay, and it was quite the chore to put it in. Luckily, our ceiling beams were going the right direction. The screen had to go in through the attic. It is powered by remote. We basically just cut an opening in the drywall, set the screen in the attic, mounted it to the beams, and trimmed it out like a picture frame. It is hardly noticeable when up and it comes down with the touch of a button:
The screen is a 200″ diagonal and is about 14′ across. It comes down quietly and quickly and looks like this:
Now, some talk about the projector and speakers. The wires for it are ran in the attic and it is mounted in the pool table room. Due to the Texas-sized screen and projector distance, we had to do something about the lighting situation in the room. The ceiling fan was in the way of the picture, and was waaaaayyyy too small for the room and definitely didn’t provide enough light. Instead, we replaced the ceiling fan with a can light and installed 4 additional can lights. You can see them in some of the “after” pictures.
For the speakers, we pulled up the base trim around the floor and ran most of the speaker wires behind it. Then we re-installed it, re-caulked it, and painted the whole room, including the ceiling and trim. All of the wires come out of the wall behind the receiver. We used black zip ties (circled) and zip tie holders that attach with double-sided sticky stuff (<– technically speaking, of course).
Max helped with the wiring. He loves speaker wires and he didn’t know what to do when the room looked like this:
Here is the finished picture of the entertainment center – LQQK –> NO WIRES!!!!!!!!!!!
Next up are some pictures of the room as a whole. I want to add some large (like, HUGE) pillows for additional seating/laying on the floor during movies. The couches only fit 4 people comfortably, so we need something for additional “seating”.
I am pretty sure the previous owners thought they were interior decorators. Man, were they wrong. I don’t claim to be good at it, by any means, but seriously… their taste left something to be desired. For the windows in this room, they had the ugliest color in real 2″ wood blinds with some sort of home-made valance. The valance was a piece of cut leather, hot glued over the cheapie (yes, that is a word) white curtain rods that you aren’t supposed to be able to see, with some beads hot glued on the bottom. Oh mah gawd they were ugly. And with the old carpet, whoa is all I can say. We replaced the blinds with the least expensive, cut-to-size 2″ faux wood white blinds from Home Depot. I would like to see a continuous curtain rod across all of these windows with another DIY curtain, but we aren’t quite there yet.
The pool table room is another work in progress. Probably mostly because it is missing the pool table (minor detail). We chose the color “Brandy Wine” by Sherwin Williams. I wanted a burnt-orange color. This color was definitely a bold choice, and we questioned it when the original carpet was still there. It has, however, grown on us, and I think it is a fun color for the pool table room.
I picture a dark wood pool table with tan felt in this space. We have been checking Craigslist for a nice pool table, but have not mustered up enough energy to follow through with the research/purchase yet. We replaced the ceiling fan and hung the theater room posters we had from our last house. We still need some more cool signs – check out that Highland Beer sign… yeah… that’s a Highland, Illinois beer sign! Oh, and a SAWEEEET Jagermeister mirror. [Note: You can see the before pictures of this room above. It was rather boring, so I didn't put any more pictures here.]
Please excuse the ceiling fan on the floor. It will be re-purposed around the house. Our pictures are not staged at all (I know you can’t tell, hahahaha).