Looking to build a man cave but you’re dealing with limited space?
We know the struggle! But, you can’t let a lack of a garage or a mansion-esque room stop you from carrying out your man cave dreams.
In this guide we take a look at 5 main points that you need to consider for building a man cave in a small space, whether a spare room in your home or even renovating an existing chillout space into a man cave haven.
Is it wise to build a man cave if you don’t have a lot of room to work with?
The obvious answer here would be a resounding ‘no’, IF you’re looking to start small and grow your man cave. But, like we said in the intro, for a lot of homeowners there simply isn’t the option to expand over time. So while you may be stuck for space in some senses in terms of not being able to add certain elements that you’ve dreamed of (for example, a pool table next to an air hockey table), it doesn’t mean that you can’t create something that you love, are proud of, and are going to utilise on a regular basis.
5 things to consider when building a man cave with limited space
1. Storage is key
Like renovating any small room, how you address storage is going to allow you to both put items out of the way to maximise space when they’re not in use, and simply allow you more room to manoeuvre than if you didn’t implement some sort of shelving.
So, what type of storage should you consider? Our recommendation is to go for a combination of shelving and furniture-storage combos that serve a dual purpose.
This could be items like a sofa with storage space underneath, footrests that open-up as storage boxes, and compact shelving that sit tightly to your walls and allow you to display items when they’re not in use (and provide easy access to them when you do actually want them).
2. Start small and build up, not the other way around
It’s so tempting to go for the bigger items first, especially if you’re trying to get them out of the way to see what’s left of your man cave budget. But, the last thing you want is to buy a larger item and find that you’re now struggling for space options for adding additional must-haves.
Starting with flooring, sound proofing, shelving and more solid fixtures is the best way to go, as you can see what the ‘true’ amount of workable room is available before you go ahead and make those larger purchases. With shelving in particular, this also means that you can fill them first with smaller items before assessing whether you need to rearrange certain aspects to accommodate specific items e.g. a draft beer dispenser that may just fit on your shelving, that now needs to be moved to another part of the cave.
3. Measure, measure, and measure again
There is no such thing as too much measuring when it comes to planning-out the space that is available for you to work with. And, it does sound obvious saying that measuring is important, but for many the measuring often stops at the initial build and planning stages.
You need to carry this same meticulous approach across to measuring and planning item placement in the man cave too. It can seem tedious, but you’ll thank yourself when you look at your finished, compact and evenly-spaced man cave after what could potentially be weeks and months of hard graft. Ahh, symmetry and room to breathe!
4. Consider how lighting will transform the space
The great thing about man caves is that there are so many lighting options to choose from, and they luckily don’t involve just whacking-on the big light and hoping for the best. You don’t want overly bright lighting to create a sterile space, nor do you want a lack of lighting which can make an already small space feel even smaller.
Look at options like custom neon lighting, back lighting on gadgets and tech, and even strip lighting to be adorned across walls and primary fixtures. Check out our man cave lighting guide for more information on how to address potential lighting issues specifically.
5. Consider wall decor
A small space means that you have to get creative with how you approach wall decor. Too much and the space looks cramped and ‘busy’, too little and you may be left with an itch that can’t be scratched (or, more specifically, a blank wall that you’re desperate to fill).
Opting for decor like movie posters, custom prints, neon lighting and memorabilia are all great ways of adding your own flair to the space, without taking-up that precious floor space. Done correctly, you can blend your larger items into the styling of the wall decor, so there’s a seamless theme or ‘flow’ throughout the space. And, when it comes to man cave items for your walls, there’s seemingly a never-ending amount of options to choose from.
If you liked this guide then you may also enjoy some of our other man cave build-related features:
Got questions? We’d love to be the experts to answer. Drop our team a message and we’d be happy to point you in the right direction and get your man cave build started off right.
My core areas of expertise include technical, local and organic SEO, alongside targeted content development and white-hat outreach strategies for link building purposes. When I'm not doing SEO you can find me gaming in my man cave!