Dudes + Design

First off I’d like to say there are many “dudes” that I’ve worked with that are design master minds and creative geniuses… this post does not apply to them. However, for you women out there married to the outdoorsman, the jock, the tech, or the “you name it” – this one is for you.


What he really wants:  Lets start out by talking about what he really wants: FORM TO FOLLOW FUNCTION. Ladies, let’s be real here, often times we can be desperate for the perfect plate display on the wall and in doing so may cover up an outlet. Although, this is painful to hear, that’s bad design. That outlet has a function and you just took it away. Or maybe you just want your bathroom counter tops clean and clear- well he wants to quickly, and efficiently get out the door in the morning. You get what I’m saying if he insists on leaving his razor and toothbrush on the counter, then let him. Buy a tooth-brush holder or razor holder that fits in your style and leave it out for him. At the end of the day we have to remember home is just as much for him as it is for you. He wants his home to “function” as badly as you want the “form”.

There are bigger battles than the tooth-brush though, here are a few:

1) TV over the mantle or mounted on a wall verses tucked a way or in a cabinet

– Though this isn’t an easy solution there can be compromise. Talk through how often you watch TV if you two like to turn it on every night to unwind, then he may be winning this battle. You can tastefully hang the TV on the wall or above the mantel. Just brainstorm and discuss the best ways to hide the unsightly wires, have a place for the remotes, and enjoy it!

2) Furniture placement

– Draw it out, as best you can. If you just cannot agree then you will both need to compromise or if necessary get a reputable third opinion. Guys I’ve seen this one get really ugly!! But having a visual that is BEST for the space (and maximizes the pieces you have) not just your perspective may help you two find  middle ground.

3) Dealing with the deer head

– Ladies, good news ANTLERS are in!! No, I don’t think every trophy needs to be displayed. However, you can display one tastefully and to help tie it in pull in a few rustic pieces such as the antler lamps or antler candle sticks. This will help his trophy go from random and weird to intentional and purposeful in your space. Yes, I agree with you there should be a limit (maybe one being the max), but one also being an option.

Here are antlers done well:  image If he must have more than one put them in his space. This is not my design this picture came from http://www.thepottedboxwood.com. I liked this example because someone clearly thought of “him” but it’s still high design and a beautiful space.

Remember home isn’t all about you, it’s about your family. You want to create a space that is functional for everyone to thrive in, and then bring in the decorative elements. Think of the “dude” in your life when you start to plan out your home.

Ask your self these questions to help include him in your plans:

1) What does he really want?

2) How can I compromise?

3) How can I celebrate him/ love him well?

Its hard. It is, and I’ve seen some really ugly arguments unfold in design meetings- but just like everything in marriage if you think of each other first, then compromise you will usually get a better outcome. Two minds put together are better than one!

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