The Marvin Man’s Guide to the Quintessential Bachelor Pad

There was once a time when the term “Bachelor pad” conjured up images of ill paired pieces of furniture, plastic beer cups and incomplete dinnerware and cutlery sets. While this may still be the reality for most men in their early 20’s, it shouldn’t be for the stylish, modern man running the streets of Jo’burg. Whether he is 100% single or semi off the market, this man emulates the characteristics of the perfect gent. He is career focused, ambitious, sophisticated and stylish. So why not have a bachelor pad that reflects all of that?! Just because you are a man on the move doesn’t mean you don’t deserve a comfortable and appealing place to retreat to.

So here’s the thing guys, regardless of your situation, whether you’ve just moved in to your place or you’re dabbling on the idea of taking it to the next level you don’t have to do it all at once. The bonus is that it doesn’t even have to break the bank to look good.

So here are a few tips to get you started on building the quintessential bachelor pad:

Build slowly but always think of the long term

Rule number one, the quintessential bachelor pad should never feel decorated, it isn’t a showroom. Instead, your home should feel like a collection of interesting and visually appealing pieces that speak to who you are as a person. Always invest in quality pieces that won’t have you needing to change your furniture every two years.

Invest in cool art pieces

You are sophisticated and stylish, so trade in the Arsenal posters for some great photography. Wall art not only makes a big difference in adding character and culture to your place but it also looks really stylish. In the end it will depend on your personal style, but some great “go-to’s” include abstract art, black and white photography and even panoramic stills.

Buy that statement couch

Comfortable, stylish and oh so suave, the ultimate must have is that big leather couch. If you aren’t ready to buy the leather couch there are many other great fabrics that will have the same effect. Considering that the couch is often the statement piece in most living rooms, you should choose wisely and of course according to your bank account. You want something that is durable but also functional and comfortable. Second to your bed this could probably constitute as a “responsible” splurge.

Transform your kitchen game

A fully fledged kitchen may take a bit of time to build but there are a few items that you can start with that would make the world of  difference. Durable glasses that you can use for anything would be a great starting point, I would suggest a set of short, stem less glasses and matching tumblers. Invest in a set of plates, bowls and mugs and when in doubt go for a simple white set. Lastly, get a full set of cutlery, simple and bold silverware should be just fine. Even if you live alone, the rule of thumb is to have at least 8 of everything.

Invest in quality bedding, it’s not a luxury it is a NECESSITY

Considering that the average human spends a third of their lives sleeping, getting proper linen should honestly be considered as a necessity for improving one’s quality of life. Just to be clear, I am not suggesting that everyone get a set of Egyptian cotton sheets, but I do think a little effort goes a long way in improving your quality of sleep and making your bedroom look organised. So when buying sheets try stick to neutral tones like grey, navy and occasionally beige. If you are considering white sheets perhaps try a combination to break the monotony. Whilst we are on the topic of linen, you should consider getting a set of matching towels, again grey and white are always a win.


Bedroom furniture

When it comes to bedroom furniture there are a few things that come to play, namely a headboard and night stands. In my opinion, you could delay purchasing the headboard, if it is likely to set you back a bit, and just invest in two night stands. These are great because they double up as sock drawers and they provide a good platform to place a lamp or even your phone at night. Make sure to go for dark woods that have simple wood detailing. For those of you who love DIY projects this could be a great opportunity to show your skills and create something unique. I mean how hard could it be?!

If you do end up opting to get the headboard at a later stage, consider oversized wall art in the meantime. It is a good alternative and visually frames your bedroom just as well as a headboard. The key to nailing the look is to ensure that the size of the art is close to the width of the bed or even wider. Choose something that has structure, preferably a canvas or a framed print. Lastly, hang the art so that the bottom is just above the top of the pillows.

This list is merely a template should you need some guidance. So I encourage you to personalise it, and make it a bit more tailored to your preferences and who you are as a man.

By Boitsheko Ganyane      Interior Curator



  • Jessica Makua
    21st Jun 2017

    I think this could be a go to for us ladies starting out as well no??! Love it ????

  • Lotang Loti Mokoena
    21st Jun 2017

    Great read!!! The house warming can wait. It’s funny how we have these ideas of what we want our first homes “Bachelor pads” to look like but our pockets tell us other stories, so I totally agree we need to build slowly and think long term.

  • Thato Bapela
    21st Jun 2017

    Insightful and quite true. Since we are in winter are there any affordable places to get linen and bedding that are top of mind?

    • Palesa Motau
      22nd Jun 2017

      @Home is currently running a 40% special on various stuff including bedding. I recommend goose feather duvet and pillow inners, but it’s painful on the pocket. Jackpot is the goose and duck feather inner combo, quite affordable and excellent all year round.
      for comfortable sheets, try 300 thread count or more, but 400 is incredible. If You’re in Jozi, Continental Linen in Pineslopes and Woodmead always has great bargains on hotel quality stuff.

  • Robin Kevin April
    21st Jun 2017

    Great read! Love the nuanced tradeoff between pragmatism and the LT view to assimilating quality pieces.
    A huge amount of my time is spent watching sport so in addition to the couch my TV is probably the most prized possession. It would be great to get your perspective on some of the perrenial questions on the ideal enetartainment set-up. Mounted or free standing, tv unit or not? Types of auxiliary seating which lend your place to being a suitable spot to watch the champions league final, etc.

  • Ndu Mathaba
    21st Jun 2017

    Great read! Most of us gents (including myself) are hopeless when it comes to decorating our personal spaces. I’ll definitely make use of the guidance in your article. Thank you.

  • Ndu Mathaba
    21st Jun 2017

    Great read! Most of us gents are hopeless when it comes to decorating our personal spaces. I’ll definitely make use of the guidance in your article. Thank you.

  • Sekgwari S-kay Matsena
    21st Jun 2017

    You have to appreciate how it caters not only to the feel and appearance of the surroundings but to the longevity of it as well. Great read!??

  • Palesa Motau
    22nd Jun 2017

    The living room visual is spectacular! excellent read!

  • George Matsheke
    22nd Jun 2017

    Now that i read this, i need to re-new everything thats mine actually and start from the beginning eish …

  • Mlungisi Lulu-Mama
    23rd Jun 2017

    Great piece hey, well written. I’ve also taken a few notes :).

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