02 May 7 secrets to making your man cave the envy of your mates
Everyone likes to have a space to call their own, that they can fill with things they like, where they can do what they want with no judgement, and that just makes them feel like they’re in a safe and happy place.
For many generations of men, that’s been a backyard shed. Over the past couple of decades, some of them have gone a bit fancy and the term ‘man cave’ has come into vogue.
The concept of the man cave has become so popular that Melbourne has just had its first Man Cave Expo, and the Expo will be back in Sydney in a couple of months (July 14-16).
So, we thought we’d have a look at the man cave essentials.
A bar fridge
Plenty of Aussies have a bar fridge without a shed or man cave to put it in. After all, they sit comfortably on the back porch or in the garage (or even in the laundry).
But if you want to turn a space into a man cave, you have to start with this basic building block.
There are plenty of modern ones, with glass doors, you can still get the traditional whitegoods look, or you could go for something a bit more customised to your tastes and décor.
(Here’s that Marshall amp fridge on Amazon – you know you want it!)
A dart board
Yes, we know. Everyone’s playing on an Xbox, PlayStation or Nintendo Switch these days.
We still say sometimes you need to unplug, disconnect and go old-school low-tech.
What could be simpler and more therapeutic than a dart board?
A comfy chair
When your mates come round you might need to stand or maybe sit on bar stools because, let’s face it, space is limited and they’re not there for a nap.
But for all the quiet time you’ll be just meditating in your man cave, get a nice comfortable chair. A leather recliner will do the job nicely (after all, sometimes you will be there for a nap!).
Whether you prefer to watch sport, movies, classic sitcoms, Breaking Bad, Boardwalk Empire, or Sons of Anarchy, you can get right into your screen time in your man cave.
We’d recommend a smart TV with built-in DVD player and, once again to save space, get a ceiling mount bracket.
And might we suggest you boost your DVD collection with this 25-disc James Bond box set?
A sound system
Anything you watch on your TV will sound better when you get your audio just right. A man cave gives you the perfect opportunity to go for surround sound, with speakers mounted in all four corners (if they’re on the walls, they’re less likely to be accidentally damaged), teamed with a quality subwoofer.
If you don’t go for the surround option, at least get a sound bar. They don’t take up much space and are a significant improvement on whatever’s built in (Man-Cave Master lays out your choices here).
Meanwhile, we’re sure you’ll want to crank up a few (guitar-heavy) tunes, too.
Collectables & Memorabilia
The best way to personalise your man cave is to display some of your favourite things, whether they’re unique odds and ends that you’ve collected over the years or generally available merchandise celebrating your favourite teams or entertainment franchises (think Star Wars).
You don’t have to invest in a cricket bat signed by a bunch of millionaire ball tamperers, either. A few trophies to remind you (and your mates) of your glory days never go astray.
If you happen to have a neat collection of model cars, beer cans, superhero figurines, shot glasses, lighters, wind-up toys, piggy banks, key chains, or fossils, show them off.
High-tech or with no moving parts, clever or silly, sentimental or completely meaningless, we just can’t keep our hands off gadgets. They provide hours of amusement for no apparent reason.
Here are a couple of suggestions:
a) Classic retro video games with the Atari Flashback 8 console
b) Ninja throwing star coat hook
c) Avengers Metal Earth Thor’s Hammer
d) Portable turntable
e) Galileo’s thermometer
f) Franklin Sports Shoot Again basketball set
So, there you have it.
Step1: Get a Stilla shed.
Step 2: Fill it with the essentials.
Man Cave achievement unlocked!