Vintage Wine Cellar
A catch-all storage closet transforms into an elegant wine cellar

Vintage Wine Cellar
• Design Statement •

Just like Cinderella, a dream came true for Tami and Michael Holsten. Michael, an avid wine collector, and his wife Tami, Principal Designer and Owner of Bear Trap Design, turned a “catch-all” storage closet into an elegant wine cellar.

It was a typical unused space with bare studs and exposed insulation located at the base of the lower level stairs, next to the mechanical room. The entire lower level floor is covered with multi-color slate which contained in-floor heat. This posed a problem for the new wine cellar.

The challenge was overcome by placing a layer of foam insulation with a vapor barrier over the slate floor, walls, and ceiling. Then, a plywood subfloor was glued in. A wall space vented into the adjacent laundry room was created to house a cooling unit, which maintains a perfect temperature within the wine cellar.

The location of this wine cellar was a wonderful opportunity to create a showpiece that could be viewed from the upper level. An old fashioned store front, complete with two large windows and a faux painted shingle roof, was designed and built to draw attention and allow the viewer to see inside.

Tami found a wall mural of an authentic wine cave and had it sized to fit the side wall of the new wine cellar, providing an illusion of continuing space and setting the tone of what was about to come.

A rustic wood floor and a tongue and groove barrel ceiling, faux painted to resemble brick, were installed – all coinciding with the wall mural.

Custom cabinetry filled the interior, holding wine bottles and boxes of such. A copper sink was inlayed into a wood counter top. Faux painted bricks highlight an oiled rubbed bronze faucet and a leaded seedy glass cabinet above is designed to hold various types of scotch whiskey.

Ambient lighting enhances the cabinetry while a rustic mini chandelier hangs from the center of the barrel ceiling. This once “catch-all” storage closet is no more. A small, old world wine cellar has emerged and now, is quite a show piece.