How we build a hidden room

Building a hidden library for my child is a dream project and one of my favorite renovations of all time.

We have worked with professional contractors (this is not DIY). However, I thought it would still be helpful to explain in depth the process of designing and building this room.

As with any uncommon project, there was a lot of planning and problem-solving that helped create this magical space.

Related: You can find all mine room tour here.

When we bought our house, it had a two-story entrance that is sometimes called the “lawyer’s foyer”. That was the hallmark of 1990s McMansion.

You can see in picture one above what the entrance looks like when you are standing at the front door. In image two, you can see how it looks facing the front door (look up).

The entrance is the only part of our house with a two-story ceiling (except for the stairs, I guess) and in the third photo you can see how it looks from the second floor.

If you’re looking at these photos and thinking, “Why would you change this,” then I totally get it. The first time we saw the house, I remember liking the details—it wasn’t something I expected to change at first.

After living in the house for about six months and I was planning to renovate the living space, I started to consider closing the two-story entrance. The main reason is that the entrance has a weird vibe that doesn’t appeal to me and is difficult to decorate.

The ceilings downstairs are very high, so I’m not worried about the entrance feeling low (it still feels great). Also, our house gets a lot of natural light from the many sliding doors in the living space, so I’m willing to part with some natural light.

This is how it looks on the build date. I remember being very nervous and having a feeling of “no way back”. Going on a new floor for the first time was weird.

After the floor is added, we close the drywall for the ceiling and add the electrical system. We then installed wood floors in the new room upstairs. The new room upstairs doesn’t connect to any of the other rooms—it connects to the foyer at the top of our stairs.

I had fun planning what we could use the secret room for. It was about the size of a walk-in closet, so I had to find a way to use it to fit that size.

We could have left it open with an arch or something, but I decided to hide the door with a safe (like Narnia) was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that I couldn’t pass up. I love the idea of ​​having a unique room that is completely unexpected.

Next, I went to buy a wardrobe. I went shopping classic armor in a few months. I wanted the largest possible size to fit our space, so I shopped based on those measurements.

Most vintage wardrobes have lots of drawers and stuff inside, so I looked for a plain boring wardrobe inside. I found one on Etsy.

After the wardrobe arrived in our home, we began the process of building it into the space. We decided to build it into the wall so it wouldn’t be too deep and wouldn’t obstruct the landing door.

We also had to remove the pins (which was painful) because of the limitations of fitting it into this nook with the inflexible roofline.

In the end, I’m delighted with how it looks! You can watch it in full visit the hidden library here. To make it look more integrated, we have added a busy flower wallpaper. Finally, we cut a working door at the back of the closet and added a handle on the inside.

Now, when people walk into this room for the first time, I can tell they have NO idea that a closet is a doorway and it’s my kids’ favorite party game to show everyone the next time. firstly.

The source: Similar wallpapers / Art prints by Augustine Evans / William Cleary art print (both art prints are by Janet . Hill)/ Curved mirror / cloud lamp

Budget source: Background / Curved mirror / cloud lamp

Please step inside!

Here’s what the inside looks like. We added built-in shelves on both sides and then painted the whole room Behr’s “Silent Film”.

My oldest daughter is learning to read, and it has been the happiest year of her life creating memories in this space and collecting books for them to enjoy now and in the years to come.

The source: star chart art / Harry Potter Custom Art / A handful of printed stars, Moon and stars print, Printed Balloon Puppet / Chair

The rug and chandelier are both vintage from Etsy.

If you have any additional comments, I’d be happy to answer them.


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