Chris and I have spent some time, effort and a bit of money transforming our mostly unused basement into a functional and fun area for the boys to burn off some energy this winter. I neglected to take "before" photos because 1.) the space was a bit frightening and 2.) I had my doubts whether we'd be able to transform it into something photographable anyway.
And while these photos may not look like much, to us, this space is a great addition to our little old house. It's fostered a lot of physical and imaginative play in our kids, as well as their friends.
Most of the items in the play space were things I had in storage; the swings (from IKEA) were birthday gifts from a few years back that never were installed, the cardboard rocket was stored in the attic (with an occasional appearance in our small living room) the ticket booth, and the ticket booth was a cast-off from the days when I worked at an art museum. It had been stored in our garage since I was pregnant with Soren, but finally got screwed back together to be played with.
Under the steps, I set up a pretend area with the play kitchen, puppet theater, cash register and a table and chairs.