Den Design - Man vs Woman

Yes, we’re all created equal, but when it comes to decorating, there are differences between men and women.  It’s called the woman’s touch.  But when it clashes with the man’s touch and you’re fighting World War III over decorating the den, how do you make the clash of styles work?

In a recent article in Canada’s National Post, the author of an article called Venus and Mars Go Decorating outlined the following differences in decorating style:

Men value function over form. Women appreciate beauty.

First, take this outside the decorating arena, and you’ll see how little sense this makes.  Men don’t date for function over form, and you sure didn’t marry him for his looks – so just completely disregard this.

Guys like things that work. Women like pieces with embellishments.

If this is the case, then you’ll end up with a functional, stylish den, which is exactly what you’re going for - so capitalize on it.  Let him choose the carpet, type of paint, HVAC needs, etc., and she can choose the furnishings. 

Men decorate using their hobbies. Women tend to surround themselves with candles, lace and other items to create an atmosphere.

Decorating a room is personal, so surrounding yourself with your hobby in your den is perfectly acceptable, and adding things to create an atmosphere is exactly what decorating is about, just don’t add candles and lace to a fishing themed room, Add  your embellishments within the theme.  Make it a his and her’s theme.  How about fishing at a seaside cottage.  It works for me!

Men seem to appreciate the importance of a 58-inch flat-screen television as the focal point of a room. Women go out of their way to find a decorative armoire to hide the television-- or banish it altogether.

In a den, a 58 inch flat screen is perfect acceptable – yes, it would be nice to hide it or make it unobtrusive, but don’t banish it unless you’re going to have a dedicated home theatre instead.  The den is all about comfort and a personal style for your family.  If your family likes to gather around the television set to watch American Idol, than it works in your home. 

Men often prefer dark, comfortable leather sofas. Women lean toward sofas with curved shapes, delicate lines with lighter-colored upholstery and accompanied by lots of throws.

So get a curvy, comfy medium colored leather sofa – his would be too dark, yours too light but a combination thereof would be just right.

Men are drawn to darker and more earthen colors. Women lean toward brighter tones, with soft pastels.

So compromise with a moss green, it’s the trendiest color for 2009/2010 – and he doesn’t have to even know it.

You can design a den for mutual enjoyment.  Make a list of your must-haves for the room, have your significant other make a list.  Work together to create a room that expresses each person’s personality, as well as the melding of two completely separate styles to create one cohesive unit.  So is that defining style, defining marriage or both?  Both!