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Five Ways to "Man Up" Your Decor

Lace, ruffles, pink accents"not every décor trend is guy-friendly. But a compromise is easier than you think.

Studio 5 Design Contributor Lauren Oviatt has five simple ways to "man up" your décor.


Add touches of black or brown or navy in the space.
They key word is touches: this doesn't mean you have to install a set of large navy recliners and that your scheme has to be the colors of his favorite sports team. But remember, the all-white rooms that grace the pages of so many magazines will never feel masculine. Adding touches of black or brown or navy is as simple as framing your art in black, having a navy ottoman in front of your sofa, or even some brown silk lampshade. You'll be amazed at the instant contrast this adds to a lighter-schemed space.

Incorporate more geometric pattern and less frilly details like florals, lace and pastels.
All color aside, a simple way to add some masculinity to a room is to substitute more geometric and graphic patterns in place of those that are floral or frilly. Trellis and chevron patterns and wide stripes are so popular right now and thus easy to find.

Find out what he likes and incorporate it in your own way.
If boats are his thing then hang some beautiful ships photography above a console table on the wall. Other great masculine touches are pieces like Americana decor or some vintage sports equipment. It not only adds a cool vintage touch to the space but also makes for a great conversation piece. If it has to be something NFL related, use a football paperweight or bookends. He'll appreciate any masculine touches, no matter how small.

Add something unexpected, and make it masculine.
Many designers live by the rule that the best rooms have one unexpected element. I think this plays well into the idea of adding those masculine touches. Think of things like a cool vintage leather chair, a rack of antlers on the wall or some vintage trunks.

If all else fails or you're not willing to relent, give him a comfortable place to sit.
In my experience, this is every one of my male client's top most request. Make that floral sofa comfortable if you're not willing to give in!


Lauren Oviatt is a designer with Oviatt Design, 826 West Shepard Lane, Farmington.

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