“Only those who attempt the absurd will achieve the impossible. I think it’s in my basement… let me go upstairs and check.” – M. C. Escher
Your basement is the perfect opportunity to add more usable space to your home. That square footage is just sitting under your home. Why not turn it into something more than just storage?
There are several unfinished basement ideas out there, but you’ll want to look beyond these. Instead, focus on ideas that help you finish the space. This makes it more welcoming and comfortable.
These basement wall ideas will get you inspired to transform your basement into your new favorite place to be.
1. Black Basement Wall Ideas
Don’t be scared of painting your basement walls black. With the right lighting and decor, you can prevent your basement from looking like a dark basement. Try to pick one of your basement walls to be an accent wall. Then you can paint that one wall black.
You could also commit to painting all of the walls black for a sophisticated basement bar vibe. Or you could embrace a masculine feel for a man cave.
Use can lights in the ceiling to create lighting in the different areas. This helps to define the space and keep the basement feeling bright. You can also balance the black with light wood flooring.
2. Cinder Block Basement Wall Ideas
Leaving your basement wall bare with the cinderblock exposed can create a modern and industrial feel. This creates an unfinished basement look with minimal effort. However, it doesn’t give the warmest or coziest feel.
Try painting the cinder blocks for a simple and affordable finished basement. You may need to apply a moisture barrier coating first or risk the paint bubbling and peeling. The foundation walls have earth on the outside. Moisture in the ground can seep through the cinder block and into your basement.
Avoid having a concrete floor with concrete walls. This is too much concrete and will create a bare feel that echoes.
3. Concrete Basement Wall Ideas
If you don’t want to embrace the look of your unfinished basement walls, then you have options. Turn that concrete wall into something beautiful with a simple coat of paint. Finish the concrete basement wall with drywall, paneling, shiplap, or wallpaper.
Whatever you choose for the wall, make sure it complements your chosen basement flooring. The two need to work together to create a cohesive look throughout the basement.
Don’t choose a rustic wall treatment and then have an ultra-modern floor. It also won’t look good to have two types of wood that are similar but not exactly the same. Either have them match or be completely different.
4. DIY Basement Wall Ideas
If you’re handy and have some experience with home construction projects, then you can DIY your basement finishing. Start by treating your concrete walls with a vapor barrier. This prevents the moisture from outside coming in.
Then insulate the space with foam insulation, spray foam, or other insulating material. You’ll want to add insulation between the furring strips and around any basement windows.
Then Mount drywall on the strips and wall studs. The finished product should be a smooth wall that will prevent moisture from coming in and warmth from going out.
5. Modern Basement Wall Ideas
Modern interior design will require the most work in your basement. However, it’ll also make your basement look most like the rest of your finished home.
The walls should be white or light-colored, then lay down wood flooring. Build a drop ceiling to hide all of the plumbing, electrical, and HVAC systems.
With a finished basement, you could turn part of it into your laundry room. This gives you more space upstairs. Turn your old laundry room into a walk-in closet or other small usable space.
6. Painted Basement Wall Ideas
Changing the color of your basement walls can completely transform the look and feel of the space. Choose three colors for your basement remodel.
Use the 10/30/60 method, with each number representing its percentage use in the room. You’ll notice this approach utilized in popular basement decorating ideas.
Your ceiling color is more important in the basement than in other rooms in your house. A bright white can reflect light and make the space feel brighter.
Black can make the basement ceiling recede and feel taller than it really is. No matter what color you choose, paint everything, from the HVAC system to the ceiling joists. This creates a finished look.
7. Rustic Basement Wall Ideas
If you want to create a homey space that feels comfortable, then consider rustic basement ideas. These ideas have a simple and somewhat humble approach to basement renovation.
You can achieve this look by adding wood paneling to the walls or laying a wood laminate on the floors. Look for wood finishes that are worn and have an aged treatment.
If you have the budget, you can even find authentic salvaged or reclaimed wood. This would give your basement a sense of authenticity. Choose leather or suede furniture to balance the wood.
8. Shiplap Basement Wall Ideas
If you aren’t ready to commit to the full rustic look, then shiplap is a great compromise. It’s perfect for creating an accent wall in your basement space.
White shiplap on the walls helps a small basement to feel brighter and lighter. Pair it with a warm wood basement floor to keep the space from feeling stark and cold.
You can continue this look throughout the entire basement. Create a contrasting look on the basement stairs. The front of the stairs can mimic the shiplap look with a white wood front. The top of the stairs can be a warm wood.
9. Stone Basement Wall Ideas
Unlike cinder blocks, stone can create a cave-like feel in a good way. It’s the perfect wall treatment for turning your basement into a wine cellar. For this look, use a large wood stone design. You can do this with wallpaper, wall panels, or even real stone. The method you choose will depend on the budget.
Stacked stone is a modern look that can add texture to your basement. It’s perfect for finishing the wall of your basement. Create an accent wall. Cover the front of your basement bar. Build a half wall that separates the space into separate usable areas.
10. Wallpaper Basement Wall Ideas
Completely transform the look of your basement with wallpaper. People don’t typically consider wallpaper because basements are damp, and wallpaper isn’t compatible with dampness. However, if you’ve finished your basement, then using modern wallpaper shouldn’t be an issue.
Adhere the wallpaper to the drywall or other surface. You could have one design in each area to help define the different spaces. Use a simple design in the main living space. Then something with a bolder pattern on the mini kitchen wall.
You could go for a statement wallpaper with a bright and bold pattern in the basement bathroom. The small space can support a stronger pattern that would look overwhelming on larger walls.
11. Wood Basement Wall Ideas
Adding wood paneling to your basement walls will create a warm and welcoming environment. You could do this by mounting wood planks on the walls. However, this will require more work as you’ll need to finish the wood and mount each one individually.
A simpler solution is to buy prefabricated wood panels. You can buy them by the square foot, so you get just what you need. The panels then hook together and glue or nail to your wall. This is an affordable and easy DIY solution for a finished basement wall.