Before & After: Room to Play

It’s been a while since my last Before & After post.  In these shots you can see that the room that is now our kids’ playroom, used to be a really nasty looking office/sunroom.   You’ve seen this room before in some of my Progress Reports. I think that at some point this space was just an enclosed porch, but that over the years the previous owners added “functionality” to it, with shelves, etc.  The first thing we knew had to go was the drop ceiling; with that gone, the room soars.

The other thing we knew we wanted gone was the glass “wall” that separated the sunroom from the rest of the house.  However, it did require us adding a huge structural beam to support the new opening.  Support beams are expensive, but I’m so happy we did it and opened up the space.  The surprise bonus is that we thought we would have to live with a small step between the new playroom and the rest of the house. But when the house was down to the studs we discovered the the floor level was just shimmied up, the actual floor joists were level with the rest of the house. Now the floor moves seamlessly across and we don’t risk tripping over a little step.

In terms of decoration, it is a playroom adjacent to adult space, so the key thing for me was storage.  Enter the HUGE vintage lockers I once featured in my Vintage Finds.  That thing has tons of storage, plus it’s metal so magnets stick to it. I decided to keep the lockers yellow for two reasons, 1) I love yellow, it’s such a happy color, 2) though I am not in love with the fact that the lockers are two yellows, I love the graffiti and patina.

The other important thing for me was seating: seating for grown ups and seating for kids.  The gray microsuede bench is about 8 years old from Crate and Barrel.  In L.A. it used to be in our bedroom and would just get piled up with clothes at the end of the day.  Now the bench actually gets used for sitting!  I also got mini Eames chairs on One Kings Lane. You might recognize the gray and yellow floral pillow, it’s quite a popular pillow and was designed by Dwell studios for Target (so sad that the collaboration has expired).  I bought it years ago for our old guest room.  The other pillow is from a Joss & Main sale.  The yellow wool dhurrie rug is from West Elm a few seasons ago.  It also used to reside in our old guest room.   The hanging pendants were super cheap from Home Depot and added to a more industrial look for the room.

But for me the piece de resistance of the room is the Picasso print.  You might remember  I was looking for art for the walls.  Well, I came across this Picasso print at a salvage/junkyard and bought it for $15.  I thought the subject matter was appropriate for a playroom, since it looks like it’s depicting kids dancing around the sun.  I also loved all the colors, but upon closer inspection this did not look like a poster.  It is in fact a Picasso serigraph, and would have been printed in a limited edition back in 1959 to the artist’s standards.  The print is not worth millions,  probably more like a few hundred dollars, but still way more than the $15 I paid.  The airplane print is from Society 6 and the vintage metal letters were from my one expedition to the Alameda Flea Market.

I think the room has come together quite nicely, but it’s still only 95% complete.  The room is in desperate need of window treatments.  Know of any good, but inexpensive solutions?  I’m all ears.

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