There's a reason I tend to score the best vintage finds. It's because one of my most tried-and-true design tips is actually pretty simple: Always add something vintage. Adding something old and...
7 Amazing Ways to Design Under-The-Stairs Spaces
If you’ve been following along here or watching my HGTV show Hidden Potential, you already know by now: putting cool spaces under the stairs is kinda my thing. If there’s usable space in a home that’s just begging to be made into something functional and fun, you know I’m gonna transform it!
In many homes I’ve seen and projects I’ve completed, the space under the stairs, 99% of the time, is underutilized. Why leave it as dead space or somewhere that collects clutter? When it can actually help your home work much better for you! So if you’ve got an under-the-stairs space that’s begging for some love, I’ve got lots of inspiration for you right here.
My Favorite Under the Stairs Projects from Hidden Potential
Waves Kid Zone Under the Stairs
If you can imagine, this space under the stairs from Season 1, Episode 13 was just a nook crammed with a desk, some shelves and toys. It truly was just a catch-all for stuff. The best way to handle this space for this family was to give the under-the-stairs area one dedicated purpose: the Kid Zone.
Some fun cutouts and a really awesome waves wallpaper mural on the inside just put this over the top. Now it keeps the toys contained and the living space isn’t Toy City anymore. And it’s definitely an ice breaker when guests come over!
Custom Dog Cave
Who doesn’t love a dog cave?! Customizing this little bit of under-the-stairs space (from Season 1, episode 10) and making it a sweet dog cave made all the difference. That little bit of dog wallpaper on the inside is my favorite detail!
Puppy Palace + Cutest Work Nook Ever
Speaking of dog caves, this Puppy Palace takes the cake from Season 2, Episode 9. I had Candi Giardi of Urban Wall Design create the reclaimed wood facade for this one. It really added something special to the staircase. And we all know how dogs don’t usually like to be too far away from their owners!
So working a home office area into the space just nearby the Puppy Palace was a great call. There was once an unused closet under the stairs where the new office area is now located. And adding a place to organize home office work took functionality to the next level!
Cuddler Dog Bed // Dog Bed Basket // Sheepskin Rug // Ledge Shelf // Chow Down Bowl // Drink Up Bowl // Mudcloth Dog Bed // Paper Organizer // Cork Bulletin Board // Desk Lamp // Clock // Pencil Cup // Planter
Epic Hidden Bookcase Fort
This is my pride and joy of under-the-stairs forts. I mean, look at it! When you first glance at the stairs from this Season 2, Episode 10 project, you just see a beautiful and functional bookcase built into the side of the stairs. And then BOOM, part of the bookcase opens up into a hidden kids area! Talk about making the most of under-the-stairs real estate!
From Cluttered to Cute + Organized
This is such an achievable under-the-stairs makeover for all of you guys out there at home! Have an empty space under the stairs that’s just staring at you, looking blah? Or maybe you just use it to shove random stuff into?
Determine what you really need to add more functionality to your space and transform it! Here, the homeowners in Season 2, Episode 1 needed both an office space and somewhere to store toys. Adding a cute desk and some pretty baskets for toys pulled off both of those needs, and the under-the-stairs space is both functional and nice to look at.
Seriously Sexy Storage
And now, a seriously impressive past project – #sexystorage. That’s right. Storage can be sexy, okay! Especially when it is basically invisible! For Season 2, Episode 2, my carpenter Brian really pulled out all the stops when we put together the vision for this disappearing under-the-stairs storage area in the entryway of the home. It holds a TON of stuff, and when it’s closed, you’d have no idea it’s even there! Those are some serious storage goals.
The Tiniest Little Home
And last but not least – this is one of my favorite under-the-stairs projects. It’s one that is so special to me because it’s from the pilot episode of my show! Like, doesn’t even exist on this blog yet to link to because it was that long ago (something I’m working on to show you guys, though)! If you want to see it in more detail, you can still access this episode by watching it at the channels I’ve listed at the bottom of this post!
Creating a kids zone under the stairs is one thing, but making it feel like its own little house is fun on a whole other level. We had the cutest Dutch door installed here, complete with a mail box and a “porch light.” Which, essentially, made this feel like the most exclusive play area ever. Can I go back in time and grow up with one of these in my childhood home, please?!