ManLand: Wardrobe Space Wars

The topic of this post has been brewing for a while. No it’s not about science fiction or military history; but it is about another topic close to me…whether I like it or not!

This post is a discussion piece about the long-running battle between men and women for space in the wardrobe to store their stuff.

As the other half of team Styling You, and living in the cute little beach shack that we do, I’ve become accustomed to forever fighting for space to hang my shirts in a wardrobe groaning under the weight of the Stylist’s ever expanding arsenal.

I suspect if our wardrobe looked like this we would not even be publishing this blog post.  Photo: Misura Emme

I suspect if our wardrobe looked like this we would not even be publishing this blog post. Photo: Misura Emme

But research among friends revealed I was actually pretty well off. At least I get some space in our bedroom.

Case Study 1

A young couple I know have just bout their first house, and despite the master bedroom of their inner city cottage having a true walk-in wardrobe, old mate was all but banished from the space before he’d even got the fridge up the front steps, while his love trucked in 50+ pairs of shoes and a shed load of clothes.

Case Study 2

Another great couple I know are very similar to us. A couple of kids, a blogging machine that works from home and a husband that understands that some things just are. The bloggers’ husband has been refused access to the walk-in robe, his clothes relegated to the cupboard in the spare room across the hall. He’s ok, though … he has an actual Manland in the form of a double lock-up garage.

Case Study 3

My third example is retrospective, but definitely worth mentioning. A lovely couple we know used to live in a house where despite there being a very handsome master bedroom, ensuite, wardrobe set up, the poor bloke was required to store most of his clothes in the downstairs storage room because there was so much overflow from the lady side of the room!

So my question to you is, how do things roll at your place? Are you and your partner equals in the wardrobe as in life, or do you too run a shiny, frilly dictatorship that leaves your man scrabbling for space to park his thongs? Would love to know your thoughts.

PS. For more wardrobe space dreaming, The Stylist has been collecting “ideas” on Pinterest. You can check them out here and stake your claim.

Main photo credit: Misura Emme

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What’s in my bathroom?

manland may 2012 Nivea for men 3-in-1 shower gel; Palmer's Men

1. NIVEA for Men 3-in-1 shower gels, 250ml $4.99 each:  I love the convenience of a 3-in-1. Hair, face, body all done from the same bottle. Outstanding. And in four variants – Energy, Sport, Sensitive and my favourite, CookKick

2. Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Body and Face Lotion,  250ml $7.40:  With the cooler months comes those dry and crusty patches of skin that can be a real pain. And Palmers have produced a lotion that is quick and easy to use right across the body and face for a one-stop-shop for skin protection and nourishment.

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  • http://www.jeweldivas.com.au/ Jewel Divas Style

    Unfortunately I don’t have a partner so I have my built in all to myself, but it is overflowing and everything is doubled or tripled piled on hangers. I’d love a walk in, or even two or three rooms with adjoining walls bashed down so it’s one big wardrobe.

  • http://www.ladythinking.com/ Jackwafabwa @ Lady Thinking

    He gets an equal share of the tall boy drawers, but less than 1/3 of the built-in space. We are having a nightmare of a time looking for a new home and lack of wardrobe space is playing a significant role. I refuse to keep half of my wardrobe in the garage any longer!!!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      And so you shouldn’t! When we move in 18 months, wardrobe space will be a BIG priority for us!

  • Bsuzy65

    My husband asked yesterday
    “Am I changing into a woman ?”. Just because I put some of my clothes on his side

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Ahh, the first signs of a takeover!

  • http://twitter.com/girlclumsy Natalie

    By the way, I’m intrigued by the name “Kester Hubbard” on this post. I’m sure I went to school with someone called “Kester Hubbard”. It can’t be that common a name. Please ask them if they went to St Paul’s School at Bald Hills in the mid-90s!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Yes, that’s my husband Natalie! Small, small world!!

      • http://twitter.com/girlclumsy Natalie

        NO WAY. Blonde guy? I think he was a few years above me in school, so I didn’t know him very well, just the name and the blonde-ness. He probably wouldn’t remember me at all! Goodness, though what a coincidence!

        • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

          Yes! And still blonde. We’ve been together 10 years; married for almost 8.

  • http://octaviaandvicky.com/ Kylie

    I am taking over more and more space each day. I’m doing it with stealth. – he barely notices it happening. But it’s happening. 

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Mr SY has the centrepoint of our wardrobe marked … no stealth opportunities here!

      • LISA Mckenzie

        That is so funny ,i am glad my husband hasn’t thought of that…..

  • http://silverhuang.com/ Silver Huang

    We’re lucky! We’ve got two built-ins in our little apartment, he takes one and I take the other, done :)

    And… we’re minimalists *gasp* LOL because we travel so much, so everything we have fits into 150cm. And you know my story too Nikki *chuckles* that 150cm used to be mostly empty! It’s much better today, nice and filled with reds, oranges and blues thanks to you! ;)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      I think separation is good … no matter how much or little you have. And I’m so glad your’s is now filled with colour!

  • LISA Mckenzie

    No sorry Mr styling you ,you are not alone we have a big wardrobe not walk in but the slidy sort and well my husband has about 1/4 of it and then my not very often worn things like tracksuits go nest to his clothes ,he does have a whinge now and again but I thin he just thinks that’s life ,I’m not changing anything cause everytime I clean it out something new seems to need to go in .
    The bathroom is the same !!!!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      I think Mr SY has it VERY good and that I’m a better sharer than clearly I need to be!

  • Maxabella

    We can never have enough wardrobe space. Your post has made me realise that my man is taking up waaaaay more than his allocated 25%… must get onto that. x

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      I must get on to a new house! To much equality at the moment (although I do take up half my daughter’s cupboard)

  • http://twitter.com/RachAnd Rachael Andrews

    My partner and I are building a house. I added 1 metre to our walk-in-robe during the design process. It’s now 3m long. It’s actually a little obscene!
    He’s fully aware he gets the 50cm he needs and I get the rest.

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Love it Rachael! 50cm should just about do it!!

  • Madamebfatale

    I just moved house and now have a walk in robe. The bf decided he wanted to hang all of his t-shirts and wanted half of it. It looks like a disaster. Luckily our house has another hanging closet near the main bathroom and yet another in the laundry room ( weird I think a woman designed this house) plus obviously ones in the other two rooms. So I keep my going out dresses (ones I don’t wear) and jackets in the one near the bathroom. I want the entire walk in though, does that make me a bad person hahaha?!?

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Not at all … you may have to stage a takeover ;)

  • http://twitter.com/ShesSonic She’s Sonic

    Of course that’s the way it works!! When we moved into our home (which we are currently renovating), there were absolutely no cupboards or wardrobes. Nothing. One of the very first jobs Mr Sonic launched into was building me temporary cupboards made out of an old kitchen!! He is also letting me design our walk-in-wardrobe, as he knows it will be ‘my space’. Now that’s love!!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Oh, he’s a KEEPER!! For sure. 

  • Mummaducka

    I thought Nikki would be bored with it too, it’s all beige and boring! and there’s hardly anything in it! seriously not even a weeks worth of outfits!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      I’d love the chance to “colour” it up and put the shelves to better use!

  • http://twitter.com/girlclumsy Natalie

    Nikki, if your wardrobe looked like that, you’d be suffocated by boredom! All tans and neutral colours? No way! OK, the style is nice, but I’d expect to see green and orange at the very least… :)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Definitely the clothes in it would look VERY different. The space would be a dream!

  • Jodie aka mummaducka

    hahaha, My hubby has many endearing qualities, but these are not them. We have 2 built in wardrobes in our room, I get the big walk in robe ( I have trained myself not to want to put things in the kids wardrobes!) and he gets a pretty decent sized one on the other side of the room. His is always a disgusting shove fest, I couldn’t stand having to share that. half the time I can’t even close his doors coz he’s got towels and stuff slung over the doors. Aargh. He has different standards when it comes to folding and putting away his clothes! half the time the shelves are empty and theres 3 baskets of his clthes stacked up waiting for him to put them away.
    Don’t get me started on bathrooms. I have the ensuite. Hubby has to use the main bathroom. He is a person who likes to flood bathrooms. I can’t stand it, he actually pushes the bathmat out of the way and doesn’t stay in the shower recess to drip off a bit, but climbs out with the water still running and lets it run all over the floor. Can’t stand travelling with him coz I never have a dry towel or bathroom. It’s revolting and infuriating!

    • Mummaducka

      So there are NO men’s products in my bathroom!!!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Love it Jodie – sounds like you’ve got the house plan we hope to have in our next house – and would have had in this one if the property market hadn’t slumped before we could think about renos.

  • Thea

    I’m afraid that, even if your wardrobe space did look like this, you would still be struggling. As you said, some things just are and we all know that belongings magically multiply to fill all available space. Unless you are a minimalist and that is just boring!

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Ah, maybe Thea … we actually have a very small space at the moment that I keep well edited. I’m in such a habit of that that I can’t imagine that changing! But I’d like to have things better displayed!

  • Lia Halsall

    For the first time in our sixteen years we’re not sharing a walk-in-wardrobe. When I returned home from my overseas deployment I volunteered to move my half of the wardrobe into the spare room across the hallway so that I could expand without sacrificing space. 

    We’re both in the military so we have half a wardrobe filled with uniforms and the other half filled with civilian clothing. It worked out perfectly because my wardrobe room is clean, neat and organised and I no longer have to look at my husbands who’s wasn’t.

    It’s a win win situation. :)

    • http://www.stylingyou.com.au/ Nikki Parkinson

      Makes so much sense Lia … and good on you for volunteering to move!

    • http://the-accidental-housewife.blogspot.com.au/ The Accidental Housewife

      We’re both military too.

      We split it 50/50. I can’t imagine hogging the lot! Who do I think I am? Lol.

      However, there was only one set of shelves so I got them, but we bought him a drawer set for inside his built in wardrobe side, since he has smaller shoe storage requirements. All our mess kit is stashed in the spare room cupboard!