Men’s Style and Grooming by Yatan Ahluwalia: Living in style

Updated on Nov 19, 2022 02:55 AM IST

Decoding the lead look Hair: Short on the sides, long and messy on top

Your home becomes an extension of your personal style and should therefore always reflect who you are; Model: Gustavo Gauy (a fashion model from Brazil; his agency: Auraa talents) (Yatan Ahluwalia)
Your home becomes an extension of your personal style and should therefore always reflect who you are; Model: Gustavo Gauy (a fashion model from Brazil; his agency: Auraa talents) (Yatan Ahluwalia)
ByYatan Ahluwalia

Decoding the lead look

Hair: Short on the sides, long and messy on top.

Brows: Thick and straight.

Face: Clean shaved.

Lips: Fresh and buffed.

Body: Well defined and smooth.

We love our clothes, cars, tech, and grooming regimes but when it comes to how we arrange the space we live in, we usually fail. Typically as men, most of us don’t talk about interiors, and unfortunately it shows!

Our homes are either left to our partners, parents, landlords or end up being terrible mutations of cluttered college rooms, PG spaces or full of needless objects, mismatched furniture, and bare lightbulbs. Ideally, it should not be this way.

Each one of you with your own space (be it a room, floor, apartment, house, penthouse, or farm) should take the same pride in it as you do for styling your wardrobe or accessorising your car.

Keep in mind, there’s a thin line between the point where your swanky bachelor pad becomes a full-blown man cave. It’s quite easy to strike a balance between a masculine home which combines great style. Here’s what you can do:

Start with the basics: The colour scheme sets the mood for your entire space. Select colours that have a ‘manly’ feel and vibe well with you. Neutral colours are a good starting point. Ivory, beige, or grey work well for large expanses like walls. For a little play of colour, you may add the drama of dark colours on some element walls, panels, or pillars.

Then work backwards: A handy approach to starting a new room is to first consider the floor plan, then plan what goes where. With a bird’s eye view of the room in mind, it’s easier to consider the furniture, statement pieces and how they will fit together.

Add elements: While decorating, it’s always helpful to have a colour scheme in mind. Whether you’re opting for one colour or combining it with lighter and darker shades or using saturated colours with accents of white (or bright) for high contrast, it’s worth keeping this palette in mind for accessorising and adding furniture and other décor elements.

Go easy: The key is not rushing into it. Keep an eye out for cool pieces, observe how the space looks throughout the seasons and different levels of light. Take the opportunity to live in the space for a while, becoming aware of its nuances and how you really use it daily, and above all don’t be afraid to move furniture around and try different arrangements until you land on a configuration and design that works for your needs, routine, and lifestyle

Throw in some texture: Texture is essential when decorating a space. This creates a warm and inviting atmosphere. One basic design technique to add warmth to a room is to bring in tactile elements. The use of wood, metal, brick, and at least one piece of leather (or suede) furniture is a great place to start.

Then build: Get the essential pieces nailed down and the rest of the room will follow. That means large pieces of furniture: bed, sofas, armchair, sideboards, dressers, dining table, desk, or recliners. While light colours are a timeless and clean option, they come with the risk of being too clinical, so make sure the furniture and furnishings you place provide a warming contrast.

A place for everything: Nothing makes a space look more unkempt than things that are out of place. Don’t over clutter spaces and emphasise on making your coffee table functional, your display organised and the bookshelf in some order and symmetry. A home entertainment system is great, provided it’s not the centrepiece and is dust free and everything else in the room.

Dress the windows: Wood blinds, natural woven shades, or old fashioned shutters are good choices for manly window treatments. They give a space a more classic, tailored appearance. If you prefer curtains then don’t buy expensive fabrics - just a set which won’t look either too busy, garish, or feminine (read floral).

Infuse yourself: If it’s in your life, it needs to be in your home or apartment. Some guys are really into their health while others are creative or industrial. Whatever lifestyle you lead, let it show. For example, buy art that reflects your hobbies and interests; If you’re bookish, assemble a huge library or if you are a painter, place an easel in the living room with a few finished pieces hanging on the wall.

Finally, light up: Each room should have its own distinct atmosphere dictated by the lights being used. Invest in lamps (both big and small) and always consider where they point, the shadows they cast, where the light is reflected, what part of the room needs lighting and the accessibility of the switch. Use candles because they create the mood and a sense of inviting warmth. And no, they won’t dent your macho, tough guy image.

Ten home décor tips:

Invest in quality over quantity. A room should feel collected, not decorated!

Combine items and pieces from different times and places based on your personal style and preferences.

You may want to hide the good stuff, but a solid bar display is an uncompromisable must-have.

A little greenery helps break up lines and will brighten up the space. Introduce added life into your pad with a few or several plants.

Differentiate between good and bad taste. If it doesn’t jar against the room’s colour palette and it fits the space, go for it.

Your gadgets should be both stylish and practical. Try and get multi utility products than those that have limited use or purpose.

You may be bold or subtle and your decor should match your personality. Never sacrifice too much function for fashion. Decor needs to look good but also be comfortable and serve a practical purpose.

Mix and match store, suppliers, and brands. Your home should not look like it’s been put together by a visit to a single store or online platform. Having said that, ensure you don’t have too many varying styles in one place.

Declutter your room and only include the necessities while ensuring each item serves a purpose. Capitalize on one or two items that grab attention when one enters the room.

Last but certainly not the least, it’s essential to make your home feel like your own and not someone else’s!

Beautiful Homeware

Everything you own or use, should reflect who you are or aspire to be.

Serveware

This fine, delicately handcrafted, porcelain tableware comprising of plates, serving platters and bowls have been aesthetically created with Paithani motifs and laced with 24k gold trimmings. (The Valleys of Sahyadri collection by Jaypore
This fine, delicately handcrafted, porcelain tableware comprising of plates, serving platters and bowls have been aesthetically created with Paithani motifs and laced with 24k gold trimmings. (The Valleys of Sahyadri collection by Jaypore

Lighting Essential

This beautiful set of three luxurious hand blown glass candle holders in a unique ribbed pattern, with a wood base will lend a warm and romantic feel for those cold and long winter nights. (Grey snow candle holders by Izzhaar)
This beautiful set of three luxurious hand blown glass candle holders in a unique ribbed pattern, with a wood base will lend a warm and romantic feel for those cold and long winter nights. (Grey snow candle holders by Izzhaar)

Striking home décor & accent pieces

The décor pieces you use should be conversation starters or jaw droppers. Ensure you place them in a well-lit spot which catches the eye. Lifestyle trends currently favour abstract sculptures of the human or animal form. Put them against a plain or textured wall or on a wood or stone coffee table or console.

Black head

This beautifully crafted matt resin sculpture is ideal for a modern or contemporary setting. (Sense of pride anon sculpture by Viivaz)
This beautifully crafted matt resin sculpture is ideal for a modern or contemporary setting. (Sense of pride anon sculpture by Viivaz)

Blue Man

This striking, artistic resin face & bust has a unique finish, a masculine vibe and looks even better when lit under a spotlight. (Blue Man Sculpture by htohshop
This striking, artistic resin face & bust has a unique finish, a masculine vibe and looks even better when lit under a spotlight. (Blue Man Sculpture by htohshop

Concrete Figurines

These two human figures almost draped into one another makes for a great accent piece, whether you are single or in a relationship. (Happy Duo concrete statue by Greyt)
These two human figures almost draped into one another makes for a great accent piece, whether you are single or in a relationship. (Happy Duo concrete statue by Greyt)

Design-based tech products

Some stylish, fully loaded gadgets to own:

For the home

A fully loaded bar: Bars have the inherent quality of becoming the lifeline of a home party and should therefore be designed, planned, and utilised with both style and function. Place it in area which can hold enough people around it.

This must have, very smart, leather wrap, cabinet style, portable bar comes with an inbuilt mini refrigerator, backlit display unit, cocktail station, drip trays and other functional trimmings. (Model X sapphire blue home bar by SpeedX)
This must have, very smart, leather wrap, cabinet style, portable bar comes with an inbuilt mini refrigerator, backlit display unit, cocktail station, drip trays and other functional trimmings. (Model X sapphire blue home bar by SpeedX)

Sleek Speakers: A sound system which looks and sounds good so you can switch from movie, to music, to party mode as and when you want.

This multi connectivity, Dolby audio 3D soundbar will create a multiplex theatre feel with clarity, sound separation, equalizer, and a woofer with rich bass. (SBW08 Dolby soundbar by Blaupunkt)
This multi connectivity, Dolby audio 3D soundbar will create a multiplex theatre feel with clarity, sound separation, equalizer, and a woofer with rich bass. (SBW08 Dolby soundbar by Blaupunkt)

For your personal use

A multi-functional smartwatch: I suggest an allrounder: which offers you everything from sports to health and wellness features which work both outdoor as well as indoor at home.

This stylish and essential, health-focused premium smartwatch with a new body response sensor helps you manage stress, track your heart health through the ECG app, PPG algorithm, heart rate variability and skin temperature. (Fitbit Sense 2)
This stylish and essential, health-focused premium smartwatch with a new body response sensor helps you manage stress, track your heart health through the ECG app, PPG algorithm, heart rate variability and skin temperature. (Fitbit Sense 2)

Cool Headphones: Needed when you want to disconnect from everyone and everything around you and immerse yourself in surround sound.

These sleek noise cancellation headphones come with a large speaker size, comfortable ear cups, a battery life of 30 hours and allows you to pair up to two devices simultaneously. (The BH47 by PLAYGO)
These sleek noise cancellation headphones come with a large speaker size, comfortable ear cups, a battery life of 30 hours and allows you to pair up to two devices simultaneously. (The BH47 by PLAYGO)

Products for your bed

We spend a lot of time in or on the bed and therefore it’s an area you should never ignore. I suggest linen that either matches or contrasts with the colour theme of the bedroom. Things to keep in mind: comfort, durability, easy to maintain and a strong sense of style.

A subtle printed bed set

A soft and luxurious, cotton sateen, subtle star printed bedsheet to sleep over, under or get lucky on. (The Iktara bedsheet and pillowcase set by Kyoona)
A soft and luxurious, cotton sateen, subtle star printed bedsheet to sleep over, under or get lucky on. (The Iktara bedsheet and pillowcase set by Kyoona)

A soft quilt

A sophisticated organic cotton quilt to style your bed, keep you snug through the year and get playful under. (Hand spun, printed block print quilt by Lemonade)
A sophisticated organic cotton quilt to style your bed, keep you snug through the year and get playful under. (Hand spun, printed block print quilt by Lemonade)

The author is an image, style, grooming and etiquette consultant and trainer.

From HT Brunch, November 19, 2022

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