DIY: Creating an Under Stairs Wine Room

These clients had been dreaming of creating a wine cellar but didn’t have a lot of extra space in their home. After doing a little research and assessing the spaces available, they chose to use the closet under their stairs. With a good amount of planning they decided to take on the build-out and installation process themselves.

wine cellar cooling system

Remote ducted cooling system located in basement.

They started by determining what type of cooling system would work for their under stairs wine closet. After talking to Vigilant about multiple options they decided on a remote ducted cooling system that could be housed in their basement. This type of system pumps cool air through ducts into the cellar and returns the warm air away from the wine room with minimal noise.

Wine cellar vapor barrier and insulation

Left: Vapor barrier for keeping out moisture Right: Insulation added to walls

Next, they removed the old drywall, so they could insulate the walls and include a vapor barrier to keep moisture out of the room. Using a polyurethane vapor barrier, they covered the walls, ceiling and floor to protect the room. Next, they inserted a high R value insulation to help with temperature control. Once the walls were insulated a plywood base was placed on the walls to securely apply their decorative wood paneling to.

Making the task a little more difficult was staining all the Vigilant wine racks. The homeowners wanted to match the wood paneling walls, so they opted to purchase the racking unfinished and stain and lacquer all the components themselves. Afterwards, the homeowners commented that they should have had Vigilant match their custom stain, it would have saved them a lot painstaking time.

Custom finish on wine racking

Custom finished wine rack

Once all the wine racking pieces were finished and dried, the homeowners assembled the racks. The racks were securely attached to studs to keep them from tipping over. For the focal point of the room the homeowners chose a 5 column bead board arch top above a table top that provides a surface for decanting and serving wine.

Bead board archtop

Bead Board Archtop with LED display lighting

Next, they added the LED display lighting. Each ladder rack comes with a high reveal row and a light valance piece to conceal the wiring for the lights. Once all the lights were installed it was time to stock the cellar. Each wine bottle was strategically placed to correspond to the bottle in the display row to make it easier for the homeowners to sort and organize their collection. The final capacity for the room is 581 wine bottles.

Before and After wine cellar door

Wine cellar door with sidelights

The last piece was installing the pre-hung Vigilant Full Glass Square Door and sidelights. The wine inside the room is beautifully displayed and visible from the entertainment room through the full glass paneled door and sidelights. The door and sidelights not only look stylish but feature fully insulated, argon filled, glass panels and exterior grade weather stripping to protect the wine from opposing elements.

Now that the room is complete the homeowners are really enjoying the wine cellar. They mentioned that all their friends and family are very impressed with the final result and their handiwork.

Finished wine closet

Finished wine closet

To learn more about Vigilant wine closets visit us online or call us at 1-888-812-4427 and let one of our design experts help you take the first step in making your wine cellar a reality! Also, check out our NEW 3D DIY Wine Cellar Planner tool to help you design your wine cellar. It’s easy, free and fun to use!


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