The Big Reveal

If there is one thing I’ve learned from building houses; there is a lot of dead space. Especially in 2 story homes. When I walk a buyer through before Sheetrock, I always tell them to take notes and pictures of places they can expand closets or other rooms.

So in our own house, we were lucky enough to have dead space under our stairs. Even better, our oversized laundry room connected to the space I wanted to access. 

So I started from the laundry room side and made a few holes to see how much room I had. I bought a 2040 door to put on the laundry room side. This gives initial access to whatever we put under there. We decided a dog house would be perfect for us.

So I cut out and framed the space to fit my door, then cleaned out the space and took measurements for my design.

I decided to use a horse stall mat for the floor and used 1×12 common boards for the side walls. I stained them with my favorite Jacobean stain before cutting. 

I really wanted a light in the room so I used a cedar fence picket to create a ceiling area. I wanted a 2 way light, so I cut an outlet wire and added a light switch on the living room and laundry room wall.


I tried to do as much as I could before making a hole into the living room. That kept the dust and dirt to a minimum. Finally I decided on a door size and framed the wall for it. Since I had to remove a stud, I added a header on top to give it strength


I trimmed around the opening with 1×6 common boards and stained them. I used door casing to give the outside a natural look. I also decided on cedar fence pickets to line under the stairs. I figured the cedar will help with the dog smell. 

My design for the living room door was to use stair balusters and frame around them. We were in need of a door quickly so I used a kennel gate and I sandwiched it between 2×4 and 1×4 wood. We painted it the trim color for now. 

Overall I am happy with the final product. It was a little nerve racking cutting up a new house, and it tested my skills a few times. Mattis loves it too.

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