Children love to use their imaginations. What better place to act out scenes from their favorite fairy tales than a castle playroom under the stairs?
Last summer, I got lost for weeks in an enchanted world under our stairs. It started as blank white walls with a gray cement floor, but in my mind it was a magical forest full of friendly woodland animals leading the way to a medieval castle. I spent every spare moment I could down there painting, sewing and laying carpet.
While I worked, I envisioned my boys playing in there for hours on end dressed as handsome princes and brave knights. I could see them defending the castle from masked marauders, fearsome dragons and plundering pirates. I imagined a day when I could send them downstairs to play after breakfast and not hear back from them until lunchtime when they would share tales of the adventures they had in their castle playroom. But this isn’t only about having fun. According to this article on Scholastic.com, imaginative play is key in developing social, language and thinking skills in children.
Anyone can create a castle playroom, like this, if you have a little imagination and a spare closet. Join me over the next several weeks, as I share how we turned an empty space under our basement stairs into a magical hideaway for kids, including:
- Where We Got the Idea for a Castle Playroom
- How to Paint Faux Stone Walls for the Castle
- How to Paint Woodland Animals and Trees
- How to Create Space Using Carpet Squares
- How to Sew a Fabric Curtain for the Front of the Castle
- How to Set a Medieval Scene with Shields and Decor
- Find a Place for Everything with Seating and Storage
- The Adventure Begins, A Final Wrap-Up
Here’s a Sneak Peek of the Castle Playroom
Creating a Castle Playroom from a Blank Canvas
Our home is a large ranch-style house with a split level staircase to the basement.
From the main floor, you go down 7-8 steps, then there’s a flat platform followed by another 7-8 steps to the basement of our house.
The split level staircase created a small closet type space about four feet high, which many families would use for home storage.
When we finished our basement a few years ago, we knew we wanted to make the space under the stairs into a clubhouse or playroom of some sort. At the time, I was pregnant with our second child so we just had the space drywalled and sealed with primer. We left the gray cement floor unfinished and installed a door to match the rest of the interior doors in our basement. This allowed us to close off the space until I was finally ready to create the castle playroom. That, my friends, is where we start this adventure with a blank canvas:
Next in this series, I’ll take a look at where we got the idea and share another example of a magical hideaway for kids. If you’d like, you can subscribe to Kenarry to follow along with our castle playroom series over the next few weeks. You’ll get an e-mail in your in-box every time we publish a new castle playroom post, so you don’t miss a thing.
See the entire Castle Playroom Series on Kenarry: Ideas for the Home