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My darling wife finally read one of my blog posts here (thanks dear) only to comment over at the Dreamcatcher Facebook page that I forgot to include a coffee maker in the Man Cave bathroom blog post. Ah, she knows me so well.
 
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For the longest time it has been my dream to have fresh brewed coffee ready for me in the bathroom when I wake up. Why should I have to travel all the way to the kitchen to begin my morning only to have to go through the process of grinding beans, separating filters, and filling the coffee reservoir then waiting for what seems like an hour before I am finally able to stagger back to the bathroom to conduct my daily business meeting. 
 

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If only I had a Miele CVA-4066 Automatic Coffee Machine ($3000) that is built right into the bathroom wall and plumbed with fresh flowing tap water so you never have to hassle with filling up a water reservoir again. It also has a coffee bean bin and a built in bean grinder that automatically grinds a digitally measured portion of beans each day to ensure you get that robust fresh ground coffee taste. For those wussies out there who feel the need to taint the purity of that black morning potion with cow juice, it even has a refillable milk tank and a frothed milk dispenser. Additionally, it even has a hot water dispenser in case you'd rather have tea than coffee...but really who would?

 
 
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Ironically, I decided this while using the bathroom this morning. But it's true. While you can surely have a man space with a bathroom in it you cannot take over the family bathroom and call it your Man Cave.  For one, the  there's no beer or whiskey in there - or at least there really shouldn't be. Secondly, it would make for a horrible space to hang out with your manly buddies; especially if one of those buddies decides he's "got to go".  So, while the bathroom is indeed an important sanctuary for a man to get some reading in,  perform manly grooming rituals, soak his sore muscles, and of course 'do some business on the throne', it simply cannot be considered a Man Cave.

However, while we are on the subject of the bathroom, let's look at what can be done to make the bathroom a little more appropriate for manly seclusion. 

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I think it's more than obvious that every bathroom - manly or not - must have a toilet. But the question I ponder is "must thou throne be thy common white porcelain?" The answer is of course no. Take for instance the Herbeau Dagobert solid ash throne. Constructed of solid ash with any of twelve hand painted designs on the porcelain basin, the Dagobert sports such manly features as built in arm rests, a wrought iron candle holder, and even an integrated ash tray. Pulling the chain not only flushes the toilet but also rings a bell to alert others that you just KO'd another one. Even more interesting is that when the lid is raised  the toilet plays the tune "Le Bon Roi Dagobert" (The Good King Dagobert) which is a song about a French king who arrived at the minsters council with his trousers on back to front. The plaque adorning the backrest keeps the lyrics at the ready so you can sing along. MSRP $14,000.


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Let's not be coy here... sitting on the toilet is a great time to fit in some quality reading time. I personally think that National Geographic Magazine owes its long sustained existence to toilet reading. Whichever publication you dedicate to be 'red flagged' doesn't only act to enhance your everyday bathroom activity but also says a lot about you to your guests as they peruse your stacks during their stay. While the old standbys included the daily newspaper, Field and Stream,  Popular Mechanics, or Playboy the new standard is sure to be the Apple iPad2 ($500). 
Yes, gone is the day of thumbing through the yellowed pages of moisture decayed novella and enter the future of bathroom tech where we can access the internet to read online subscriptions to an endless number of ebooks and online periodicals. As if that isn't enough, the ipad can be loaded with games and apps or even used to jot down notes.... such as what to write your next blog post.

 

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Personally I am a rather strict shower guy but sometimes, after a long hard day of humping lumber and pounding nails, I might just treat my aching bones to a soak in the tub. As dainty of a task as this may seem, it could be greatly enhanced in a manly way were my recognitive soak was taking place in the carved innards of a 2-1/2 ton granite boulder. Enter the Stone Forest "Natural" Bathtub ($14,500). Each solid stone tub is hand carved using hammer, chisel, and brute force. This gives it the raw natural character of the earthy depths  from which it was spewed and leaves the imprint of the stonecutter's soul on it's worthy patron soakers.

 

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No matter how manly you think you are - how rustic and burly - every man needs his own grooming kit. No more borrowing tweezers and clippers from you wife; it's just not worth attempting to rummage through her menagerie of clipping devices and plucking implements. Go and get your own. A good quality, all stainless steel grooming kit is a good start and most contain the basics such as;  1) A pair of small scissors that can be surgically inserted in the ear or nose to strategically dispatch that pesky tickling nose hair. 2)  A pair of finely tipped needle-nose tweezers for digging into the skin to pull that festering splinter or metal shard. 3) Large, high strength nail clippers for clipping back those pointy talons before they are hewn down in some more grisly and tortuous fashion on the job site (been there, done that... ouch!).  4) A razor sharp v-tip cuticle trimmer to carve those dry, chapped cuticles back before they split and bleed all over your freshly planed oak slab. Not that that isn't a great way to color wood but it might not be the look you were after.  5) Finally, you need some sort of secure containment vessel that will keep "her" from borrowing your manly grooming instruments. A well stashed leather pouch or secret shaving can safe are usually good bets for that. 
 

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By now you're probably saying to yourself, "Okay, you're right I need to get my own set of grooming tools but there's no way my wife is going to let me put that throne in the family bathroom!" Well, maybe you just need your own bathroom. That's what this blog is about; getting your own man space. If your significant other isn't keen on the idea of having a boulder for a bathtub but you know it's for you then maybe it's time to give Dreamcatcher Design+Build a call. Fortunately for you, we don't just specialize in Man Spaces but also bathroom remodeling and home additions. With just one call to us, you will begin to understand the feasibility of adding or adapting a bathroom to your abode so that you may finally have a real Master Bathroom fit for a king. 

 
 
If a man's house truly is his castle then where he sits becomes his throne. But I certainly am not talking about that porcelain throne which adorns the 'morning man sanctuary', rather I'd like to discuss the throne which may occupy your living room, workshop, or other Man Space. In thinking of this, I decided to make a short list of some of my favorite man thrones. Let us know what you have and what you would rather have. Any of these?
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At the  top of my list is the Herman Miller Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman ($4500). To me this is easily the ultimate in retro-style manliness. It falls somewhere between Captain Kirk's seat of command on the bridge of the U.S.S.Enterprise and something you might spy in Don Draper's office. Having sat in one, I can say first hand that this chair was designed around the man's proportions and is extremely comfortable. While it's equally appropriate for a traditional man space library and a contemporary man space sports den but would be best suited in a retro styled Mad Men home office. Made of pressure formed laminated walnut, plush black leather, and cast aluminum base this is the quintessential representation of manliness in the shape of a chair.
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The La-Z-Boy has come a long way since introducing the reclining chair back in 1928, quickly becoming the most famous name in man furniture (maniture?). Today's rocker-recliner is loaded with man inspired features including drink holder, remote control glovebox, built in beverage cooler, vibrate and heat massage and now with the new La-Z-Boy Explorer Lounger ($1400) even a tray table with integrated wireless keyboard to control the television and surf the net via Microsoft WebTV Plus service. Imagine hanging out with your buddies in your man space sports den when an argument commences over "who was the best pass rusher of all time?" then you can simply flip out the pad and google the answer faster than your quibbling pals burp the national anthem. (BTW, the No. 1 pass rusher of all time is Hall of Fame defensive end David "Deacon" Jones)
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For the less lazy boy or otherwise tech savvy man, there's the new Elite iPad Chair ($4000) that offers - you guessed it - a built in iPad tablet holder. Other features include a whisper quiet reclining motor for the foot rest, lumbar support, elbow positioning, a stainless steel cup holder, and a seat cushion normally found in a European sports car. In addition to sitting back and reading, the chair also becomes command central for providing complete home automation through the iPad. Companies such as Crestron and Home Logic now offer downloadable apps that transform the iPad into a beautiful, large home theater touch panel. With the Crestron Mobile Pro G app made specifically for the iPad, your personal fortress can be controlled by simply tapping the screen to select movies, view various security cameras, adjust light levels, room temperature, and volume with supreme ease. (iPad not included)
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Take seven strategically-placed speakers and cover them in Italian leather and you’ve got yourself theBodySound Recliner ($6000). This home theater or music room specific chair places the subwoofers and loudspeakers normally associated with a home theater system inside the chair, under your back, butt and sides thereby addressing “the need for full impact, large scale sound in a smaller space.” The intensity of the deeply vibrating sound waves not only intensifies movies and music but produces “ profound relaxation and deeper states of meditation” according to the company. I’m sure the speakers have something to do with that, but it might also be the Italian leather and the comforting ability to spend $6000 on a chair.


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Every man space should have a bar - it doesn't need to be a formal bar like the one down at the "friday night jamboree and hootenanny", mine own consists of a tray atop a mini fridge and a portable bar box that I take to with me to hang at my less fortunate friend's man spaces. But if you are so inclined to build a real deal bar, you will need to conemplate a place to sit at . Enter the Tahoe Antler Co. Elk Antler Bar Chair ($2400), available with elk antler arm rests and elk hide seat and back - if only it had hoofs for feet it would be complete. This chair is about as manly as it gets, I can only dream of  sitting in it at a traditional red oak bar while enjoying a hand crafted american lager and gnawing on a hearty elk burger! Buck snort.


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I've seen this awesome "Scottish Bar Stool" floating around the internet for awhile but until sitting down to make this list never researched who made it and where it could be purchased. It turns out, nobody knows who made it and it cannot be purchased (sad). But, in the indellible spirit of Dreamcatcher Design+Build, I have decided to build it myself (I dunno, maybe). It would make a great addition to my homemade hokum collection that also includes my Leg Lamp I made this past winter. 


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When someone says "bean bag", images of either a tie dyed faux felt bag full of mini packing peanuts or a sticky pleather floor pillow that's not even fit for the dog easily comes to mind - certainly nothing manly. However the Steel Bean Bag Chair by Rick Ivey ($4500) is nothing like that. Made of riveted stainless steel plates, this one surely would take away the prize of being the “most manly bean bag ever” and is the only bean bag that we could possibly recommend for any man space.