Office in the Living Room

There must be something about men and their personal spaces.  Every man has his.  It’s the one spot his wife won’t poke at or hang around when he’s not around.  For some men, the spaces are enormous.  Other men can’t quite live that large.  My husband is one of them.

His first man cave was in the utility closet in the kitchen of our 450 square foot apartment in the US.  The desk fit right between the water heater and furnace.  He had to get off of his chair and close the door so that I could open the silverware drawer.  Every other woman kept their dishwashers and dryers in her closet.  Not me.  That’s where my husband went.  

He never had to clean it up.  He could work late at night without bothering me.  Best of all, he was just an arm’s reach from the cookies when they came out of the oven.


But German houses don’t have closets.  We’d already put our bikes in the only alcove in the apartment.  Little did we know, finding Martin a space of his own was going to be our hardest task in the entire remodel of our house, including the kitchen.

It was great reading all of your guesses about this last corner of our living room.  Bookcases, a bar (ooh), a closet… all of those would have been so lovely.  When you live in a small space, though, everything you have in your house has to accommodate all the people who live there.  Drats.

I guess this is where I get all lovely dovey and report:  a happy husband is better than any of those other great uses of this space.  So here you have it.  When I showed you this:



We were building this:



Our man cave.


The dirt on what you see:  The front three panels are hinged together and screwed to the brown wall.  The wall is solid concrete and rebar, so don’t worry.  Those panels aren’t going anywhere.  Martin just has to fold the frosted glass panels together against the wall to reveal his desk.  You can see the beige of his chair right above the couch arm rest.

All I have to do is close the panels back up when he’s not looking.

The entire desk was inspired by a scrap piece of hardwood we found marked waaaay down.  The folding panels were inspired by my grandmother’s love of music and hate of organized sheet music.

Martin is still moving in.  The very last box in the house has finally been unpacked.

So no big screen TVs and leather couches in this man cave.  No pictures of busty German maidens carrying mugs of beer here (I think).  Still it’s the man’s space.  Do you have one of those at your house?  I’d love to swap stories.

(Images by Katie for Making This Home)