Tips for Designing a Stylish Rec. Room



With Super Bowl LVI swiftly approaching this coming Sunday, we have recreation rooms on the brain! Whether you’re in the habit of hosting Super Bowl parties or not, a rec. room can be an incredibly useful space to have in a home but unfortunately, they often come in the form of a dreadful man-cave cliché. Typically located in the basement of a home, the rec. room is often the place where all the furniture and “decorative” items that couples disagree upon go to die. These items are thrown into the basement, haphazardly arranged, never to be seen again by anyone beyond men and children. The reality though, is that you can have the best of both worlds. A rec. room, be it in the basement or elsewhere, has the potential to be a stylish space, while still catering to the needs of poker nights, football Sundays, a game of snooker in the wee hours, movie nights and slumber parties for kids. When designing a rec. room, here’s what we typically like to keep in mind…

Photo Courtesy of Decoist

Comfortable Doesn’t Mean Ugly

More often than not, rec. rooms will feature bulky furniture that, although undeniably comfortable, are also undeniably ugly and better suited for a frat house. Let us put it plainly, comfortable doesn’t need to mean ugly! There’s no question that comfort and practicality ought to be at the forefront of the design process of a rec. room but surely the pieces need to meet other criteria. Remember, although the rec. room is designed for a specific purpose, it is still a part of your home and therefore should be in keeping with the general aesthetic you have chosen throughout. If you’re home flows with sleek and modern elegance in tonal creams and off-whites, a hulking pair of Lazy Boys and a billiards table with overhanging green lamps isn’t exactly in keeping with the lewk. You can have your comfort and style too with things like contemporary sectionals and armchairs from our preferred vendors. Classic rec. room items, such as the aforementioned pool table, now come in a variety of forms to suit the style of any home.

Photo Courtesy of Authentic Custom Homes

If You Wish to Display Memorabilia, Do it Well

Along with sad looking furniture from days gone by, the rec. room is also the place where movie posters get slapped up on walls, without much thought, and sports memorabilia tends to collect dust in corners. We get it, if you’re going to display various types of memorabilia, the rec. room is the place to do it but we urge you to give these pieces the attention they deserve! This means having pieces professionally and tastefully framed, installing built-in shelving and taking the time to artfully hang and arrange it all. When displayed with care, these items will not only serve as great conversation starters but also as pieces of art to liven up the space.

Design by Tracy Lynn Studio

Remember, There Are No Rules

The fun thing about rec. rooms is that they are meant for exactly that- fun! As a result, they can vary greatly according to an individual’s tastes, interests and what they find… well, fun! There are truly no rules when it comes to these spaces, so if turning the room into a zen yoga studio meets meditation room, free of screens and other distractions is your idea of fun, go for it! No one said you have to have an air hockey table and signed jerseys framed on the walls. When selecting pieces, it’s important to first think about who will be using the space. Next, think about what these individuals will realistically want to use the space for. If the proposed rec. room is to accommodate a household with various interests, it’s possible to cater to them all. It’s just a matter of clearly defining what activities may take place and taking the time to design a floor plan that is functional and enjoyable for all. 

Still not sure where to start? One of our design professionals can help guide you with our single room packages.