Turn Your Cellar Space into a Marketplace!

Turn your cellar space into an indoor marketplace!This clever idea was shared with us by a dad who turned an unused space in his cellar into an inviting Marketplace play area for his daughters.

He originally designed his basement to incorporate a wine cellar into a special wall that featured a beautiful arching nook, hardwood flooring, recessed lighting — the works. But years went by and his two girls started taking over the yet unused nook as a cozy space to play with their dolls and toys.

Inspired by ideas from Pinterest for cushions, curtains, and benches, his wife soon hatched a master plan to turn the unused space into an Indoor Market as a special Christmas gift to their daughters.

Knee-deep in sawdust and wood chips — and one short trip to the ER that left this dad’s EGO more wounded than his BODY — the two parents spent the next week custom-building a play space like no other for their two young girls.

Custom Indoor Market

With only 2 days until Christmas, they sewed 3 pillows, 3 cushions, and drapes; hung custom decals on the wall; and attached maple branches and lights to the ceiling using high-tension fishing line. (And, of course, they accessorized their market with all their favorite Melissa & Doug food toys.)

They’d done it! And just in the nick of time.

These proud parents will never forget the expressions on their girls’ faces Christmas morning when they went down the basement and saw how they’d transformed the space into a magical Indoor Marketplace that they’d enjoy together for years to come!

Indoor marketplace with cash register and food toys galore

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BIG THANKS to the Calla family for sharing their inspirational story and photos.

For more creative play space ideas, follow our “Inspiring Playscapes” board on Pinterest. It’s packed with unique setups for pretend play and ideas for beautiful play spaces, as well as kid-friendly bedrooms.

And if you created a unique play space for your children, share your story and photos with us on the Melissa & Doug Facebook page.

It’s always exciting for us to see how YOU make time for your children to enjoy Creative Play – Every Day.


  1. This project turned out amazing! I’m so happy to have helped with the custom personalized vinyl wall decals for this customer and the chalkboard wall decal. The whole room is just beautiful and any little kiddos dream!