By Keri Foy 

How Tracy Shacklette transformed her basement into a room that celebrates life and creates a VIP experience for her friends and family.

While no bouncer guards the door to Tracy Shacklette’s glamorous basement, you feel like you’re descending into a swanky and modern cocktail bar complete with a VIP list.

Tracy used lots of texture when designing the space. Photos by Melissa Donald 

The space features white couches, a white floor with 24k gold flecks, gold chain link curtains, and a disco ball. It’s the space where you want to turn on your favorite music and drink martinis. “I wanted a VIP lounge area,” Tracy says. “I love it — it’s so fun!”

And, while the surroundings are luxurious, the intention behind the room is good, old-fashioned love. Tracy poured her heart into the room; she created her vision for the area with nothing but the ones she loves in mind. “I treat my friends like VIPs; they’re so special to me,” Tracy says. “Let’s be fabulous together in this space.”

Tracy found herself drawing inspiration from something she enjoyed. “I have loved dancing since I was a child,” she says. “When I was 15, my mom would take my best friend and me to a dance club. Mom knew the bouncer. We’d dance all night.” Tracy, who grew up 60 miles outside of Los Angeles, says she and her bestie didn’t have any interest in drinking; they just loved dancing.

The textured walls and metallic flecks on the floor of the basement are standout features. 

It came full circle when just last year, Tracy’s best friend flew in from California. She was so excited to show her the basement. “We played our music and danced to our ’80s songs. We relived our teenage years, but now in my own basement.”

While Tracy’s talent for designing a space has always been part of her, it hasn’t always been her profession.

Tracy says she chose these high top table and bar-lik stools, because they are reminiscent of a sitting area you would find in a swank club. 

In her late 30s, Tracy switched careers. Previously a physical therapist, she earned her second degree in interior design from the University of Louisville. “In that type of environment, you feel young,” Tracy says. “I enjoy the vibe of younger people.”

Sometimes your original idea isn’t as good as what comes next

When Tracy designed the guest bedroom, located in the basement, she wanted to keep it simple yet interesting.  

Tracy’s first vision of the room didn’t involve anything remotely close to disco. She actually had her heart set on a mid-century motif, but when she couldn’t find the fireplace to tie it all together, she scrapped her idea. “I’m going glam,” Tracy says. She put her palette together and found just the right blue for the walls, Blue Inkwell by Sherwin Williams.

“I knew I wanted metals and that’s the reason I started with gold chain-link curtains,” Tracy says. “They’re one of my favorite things about the room.” She actually had them custom-made. “They use chain curtains in other countries as doors to keep bugs from coming in,” Tracy says. “I had them made longer.”

Another fave of Tracy’s isn’t even visible upon entering the room. It’s a surprise. When you slide away the mirrored wall, there’s an extra room that can transform into an area for shadow box dancing.

She completed the room’s posh vibe with metals, reflections, and textured panels. “I like the bling,” says Tracy, who tries to add something unexpected to every design. “I like contrast, different shapes, dimensional things and materials. It invigorates you.” In the darker space the metals and the curtains, that can be lit from behind, are very striking.

What’s more important, though, is Tracy’s ability to make her guests stand out. She treats her friends and family like royalty. “I have a lot of love in me,” says Tracy, who credits her faith as the source of it all. “I like to make people happy.”