If you (or your man) play video games, a storage ottoman is a must-have furnishing. Not only is it a great place to prop your feet, but you can also store games and controllers out of sight, and it provides extra seating.
Decorating for Dudes
An inside look at creating spaces with masculine appeal.
- by Des Keller
Look, nobody’s saying that every man is the same, but there are a few general guidelines that seem to apply to most guys when it comes to decorating their domain. If you (or the man in your life) are looking to create a cool, masculine décor scheme–start here.
Color that Works
There are no hard and fast rules, but chances are pink and mauve won’t make the ‘gotta-have’ list in terms of paint and furniture colors. Likewise, toile and calico fabrics probably aren’t tops in terms of patterns men covet.
- Tempered Tones: “This depends a lot on the guy, but you want colors that are inviting for everyone,” says Angie Hranowsky of Angie Hranowsky Design Studio in Charleston, S.C. “I would definitely consider a main palette that might contain grays or charcoal, chocolate, perhaps mixed with green and browns, indigos and maybe even some yellows.” You can then add a piece of furniture or accent pillows in a more vibrant color to “make things pop.”
- Nuanced Texture: Earth-tone shades such as brown, sage green and even light blue are popular masculine wall color choices. You can add a new dimension to these by choosing textured paints that give the finished surface the look of suede, plaster or stone.
Furniture and Fixtures
Less is more when it comes to furniture and accessories. When combined well, carefully selected pieces raise the game of everything else you own.
- Modern Mojo: Hranowsky likes more modern, even Asian-inspired furniture pieces for guy homes and spaces. “This is less about ornate antiques and formal settings and more about clean lines and comfortable places.”
- The 800-pound TV in the Room: When it comes to most men, you have to be realistic and accept that the television (particularly increasingly large flat-screens) and stereo often figure prominently in a room’s design. Consider balancing the room by housing them in a home entertainment armoire, wall system or cabinet designed to accommodate today’s modern home theater components.
- See the Light: Table and floor lamps that are modern or have funky appeal typically garner more interest from men than traditional lamps or chandeliers. The use of a few well-placed candles can add warmth and romance to a room. This can also be achieved with ambient lights—floor or table lamps as well as some hanging fixtures that cast an amber glow. Sheri Toth of Artistic Spaces in Columbus, Ohio, suggests creating a warm environment by dimming any light that can be dimmed.
Clean and Clutter Free
In any home or workspace, clutter is an ambience killer. And, no amount of cool furniture can compensate for dust, dirt, and neglect. To keep your home guest-ready, follow these cleaning and clutter-reduction tips:
- Make Time: Spot clean a particular part of your home every week, or every day. For example, every Thursday tidy the bathrooms, or every morning straighten your den on the way out the door. That way the job doesn’t become overwhelming, and you’re place is always in decent shape if someone stops over on a moment’s notice.
- Ruthless Reduction: Generally speaking, less is more. You can’t go wrong by simply reducing the number of things you have displayed. Put old trophies, memorabilia and knick-knacks away in storage boxes under the bed, or in a closet. A cool trunk, stylish shelving or metal bins are stylish storage options; and a storage ottoman or coffee table with hidden storage are great places to hide gaming equipment.
Make it Your Own
While you want to clear away the clutter, you still want to personalize your home. One of Sheri Toth’s recommendations to men (and women alike) is to take a photograph or group of photographs you like and do something unique with them. Make prints that are sepia-toned and frame them in a grouping, or have some enlarged and output on canvases to use as wall art. Your space will look good and be meaningful.