It’s that time of year again–Football Season! Whether you love or loathe the sport, you will most likely find yourself propped in front of the television for at least a game or two, cheering on your favorite team, or simply enjoying the snacks. While countless hours of TV can surely be enjoyed in any setting, creating a space with a masculine edge makes for the perfect football pairing.
We enlisted the help of Laurel & Wolf designer, Aaron Stallings, for his tips and tricks to designing a Fantasy (football) worthy man cave. As a seasoned pro, he knows how to turn a standard space up a notch and does so without compromising the efficiency of the room. When designing a masculine escape, it’s easy to get carried away and resort back to one’s bachelor pad days, but with attention to fabrics, colors, and furnishings, you can create a multi-purpose space for the whole family to enjoy.
Read on for Aaron Stalling’s guide to creating the ultimate football-friendly space!
1. Color: As cliche as it may seem, blue works exceptionally well in a man’s space. I like to layer a strong navy with a brighter midnight or royal blue. Aside from blues, men shouldn’t shy away from other non-neutral shades – even a splash of pink from time to time! Starting with a neutral base on walls and ceilings, such as forever classic gray, allows many colorful “moments” to happen.
2. Fabric: As with any space, a mix of texture and pattern creates interest, but the inclusion of fabrics with some heft is vital for male-oriented spaces. Leather is a favorite in medium (cognacs) to darker hues — the feeling and strong scent is considered naturally masculine. Wools and heathered weaves can also be very hardy. Micro-fiber is always a great choice for its universal aesthetic and resilience to wear and staining.
3. Pattern and Print: Tried and true patterns will always work but should not be the absolute rule. A leather-bound, heather-gray and wool pinstripe rug says “gentleman” like nothing else. Plaids, strong geometric and abstract designs are also great options and even the most macho of men can justify the addition of throw pillows in their spaces!
4. Furnishings: Much of modern design is considered masculine simply because of its clean, linear lines. A strong sofa accented with a round ottoman or lounge chairs makes for an attractive juxtaposition. A healthy mix of texture and color will also keep the space from looking too “bachelor” (think black leather and black lacquer). Multipurpose pieces are ideal, like a coffee table that doubles as an ottoman, dining surface, or storage chest, as well as a fold-out sofa bed for overnight guests. Don’t forget, televisions are of the utmost importance in a man cave. The accessibility and affordability of wall-mounts, thin flat screens, and sound bars mean the only real worry is finding the right unit to store and hide the less attractive equipment.
5. Rugs: Great for use on hard flooring and even over some carpeting, rugs are the perfect design solution for adding color, pattern, comfort, and even soundproofing to a room. Rugs also help anchor rooms or smaller spaces with open floor plans. While it’s easier and perhaps smarter to search for rugs once key furniture pieces are chosen, rugs can act as art and may end up being the source of inspiration for an entire room. If you have children and/or pets, definitely check out synthetic rugs for their durability against spills and stains.
6. Lighting: There is never a shortage of handsome, yet affordable lighting on the market. Industrial style is always a perfect match for rugged spaces. Simple lines and no frills will do just fine as well. Again, as with any space, a variety of lighting options is sometimes all you need to set the right mood.
7. Art: Always personal, always highly subjective, always best to choose what you love. If you’re still at a loss, there’s no shame in asking for assistance from the store you’ve purchased other decor pieces at. Many retailers and studios offer a full spectrum of items to furnish a home — art being one of them. I suggest starting with less and building over time organically, as you come across pieces that work for you and your space.
8. Accessories: Similar to art, I believe it’s best to start slowly if you don’t already have a lot to work with. The market is inundated with options, which can be overwhelming if you don’t already have something in mind. A solid exercise is to look through design magazines or blogs for inspiration. You may not always be able to afford some of your favorites, but I can almost guarantee there’s a much more cost effective version out there.
There’s no need to become overwhelmed by designing the perfect football-viewing man cave. With a few key pieces, personal touches, and an excellent entertainment system, you’ll be well on your way to creating the spot everyone will want to cheer on their favorite team from this season!
For more on Aaron Stallings, check out his portfolio in the Designer Directory here!
xoxo, Laurel & Wolf