a basement living area with fireplace and easy chair
Photo: John Granen
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Up the Cozy Factor

You don't need an oversized sectional to create a comfy place to curl up.

1. Put a fireplace front and center.
A direct-vent gas unit lets you avoid lugging firewood downstairs.

2. Make hopper windows less basement-like.
Built-in cabinets beneath them act as a visual anchor, making their high placement seem just right. And they gain substance and polish from crisp trim, deep sills, and bronze latch closures.

3. Use furnishings to set the tone.
A leather chair and colorful textured accessories warm up a light, airy space.

Tip: Make sure temps stay toasty.
A chilly basement will chase people away faster than you can say "brrrr." Give it a separate thermostat, and put supply registers near the floor, not the ceiling. If you need supplemental heat, try electric baseboards or radiant mats.
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