How To Set Up A Basement Workshop / Hobby / Crafts / Sewing Area in Calgary!

The secret to having a great basement workshop area is "a place for everything and everything in its place".

Work Area

Each different endeavor, whether it be for a woodworking area, a sewing area, model aircraft construction or a general purpose crafts room, will need a different layout. Below are just a few things to keep in mind.   

No basement workshop area is complete without a workbench / worktable.  You'll need a work surface either along one wall, all around the room, or in the centre of the room, depending on your project’s space requirements.  At least one of your surfaces should to be 6 feet wide x 2 feet deep to work on or layout projects.  If you use table top tools it's a good idea to have a separate bench for these where they will be easily accessible when you need them. 

Make your basement workshop area floor plan so you have space to walk around your work benches and put things down keeping them handy as you need them. 

Leave extra room where you may plan on having a vice to hold things while you are sawing, drilling, sanding or sharpening tools. 


There's no such thing as too much light in a basement workshop.  You should have a combination of overhead florescent lights, and fixtures that provide light from many different angles to your workbenches.  If you work with colours, the best lighting is called "full spectrum florescent" bulbs. 

Electrical Wiring

This is one part of a basement workshop that should be left to professionals.  Let you’re Project Planning Partner (contractor) take the lead on this one.  Work with him/her and give your ideas, but let your Partner have a relatively free hand. 


This is a biggie.  Since you may have all kinds of tools, you need to arrange for hooks, boxes, bins and drawers of all different sizes.  You can go out and buy expensive storage units or you can make do with simple yet effective solutions like:


There are always plenty of harmful fumes from paints, solvents, strippers, dust and other chemicals, even when used in very small quantities.  It's easy to fill a workshop, and complete home, with fumes that are highly toxic or even deadly.  Some fumes and dust are highly flammable. Take this safety concern into consideration if this pertains to the type of projects you will be involved in. Some home hobbies are better located elsewhere. Maybe in a heated detached garage.

If these fumes will be present, remember, you have an open flame in your basement home furnace with most home heating systems. This could be trouble.

As well, if there is a cold air return within the work area, fumes will be drawn to the furnace and distributed through out the house.

If this type of concern is minor and occasional, you may consider walling the work area off completely from the rest of the house, and weather strip the entrance door. You would then need separate heat, maybe electrical baseboard heater? And add an independent ventilation system for this room.

 Ventilation is not enough to protect you against health hazards from fumes in a basement workshop.  It's essential to wear a respirator or at least a filter when you are working with products and equipment that produces chemical fumes or dust.

Your Project Planning Partner will be able to help once you explain to he/she exactly what home projection you wish to do in this area.


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