Both of these bikes live in our garage which my husband affectionately calls his Man Cave. I’ve rolled my eyes at this on many occasion until recently when I was faced with doing some DIY and managed to put my hands on absolutely everything I needed with amazing ease and efficiency making what was a chore into a rather satisfying experience.
There are huge benefits to having a ‘Man cave’ in a home, this is the space where things like motorbikes, old electrical stuff, fitness equipment, tools, paint etc. which would otherwise need to be stored inside the house can live without driving the lady of the house mad. This is not to be mocked, we’ve had to design a treadmill into a newly refurbished, open plan kitchen dining space complete with flat screen carefully positioned for viewing while jogging – not an easy thing to blend into a beautiful interior but would have worked wonderfully well in a man cave setting.
We have clients with 3 boys who fully understand the need for such a space. When I first visited their home I was blown away by their play room which was the most organised child space I’d ever seen. I was told that a simple rule ‘No tidy. No telly’ was all it took to get the little Lego fanatics to create order that even the most organised mum would be proud to take credit for, Lego pieces were ordered and stored away by shape and size.
Now that the boys were getting bigger our clients wanted to convert their attic into a ‘Make room’ – inspired by the Make shop which is runby the Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin. The Make shop is a collaborative workshop space where you can learn everything from cross-stitching to DIY robotics, origami and 3D printing. Tools, materials and guidance are provided to allow you to get making. Our clients wanted to create an equally creative space for their boys. The attic was simply kitted out with workbenches, plenty of shelving and lots of storage. The floors were covered in a heavy duty lino to handle any spills and anything else that goes along with making and experimenting.
I know I’m focusing on the messier side of the male environment but the man cave doesn’t have to be a striped back utilitarian space. We had other clients who wanted a more comfortable space for the man of the house to escape to. We turned a spare bedroom into a relaxing study with wood burning stove, a TV for watching sport, plenty of book shelves and a really comfortable sofa to recline and relax.
We all need our own space – a place where we can unwind and recharge. We ladies are often well catered for in this respect as we are often the main decision makers when it comes to the décor and layout of our homes, our husbands being the ones forced to compromise. According to psychiatrist and author Scott Haltzman, it is important for a man to have a place to call his own and some psychologists claim that a man cave can provide refuge from stressful surroundings and actually be beneficial to marriage.