Cheap Man Cave Ideas – Amazing and Affordable

We all have dozens of projects going on at once, some house upgrades and some house repairs. Prioritizing what you need to do first usually relates to what is a necessity and what is affordable. These same concepts apply when creating a man cave to fit whatever theme you have decided on. With all of these side jobs that could put a major dent in your pocket, I have done a little research on some cheap man cave ideas that could give you the appeal and wow factor you are looking for in your man cave without costing you a fortune. We will take a look at some options you can consider first and then make our way down towards options you can set aside till the money comes your way. Let’s start where the drinks flow!

Bar Ideas

Wood will be your friend, it’s time for you two to meet. Whether you are going for rounded bar or one with solid, straight edges, wood options are the most cost effective and easily obtainable materials. We have all made a wrong turn and ended up behind a Home Depot or Lowe’s at some point (or any home improvement store local to your country), and in making that wrong turn you may have driven by something that falls directly into your realm of DIY possibilities- pallets!

  • Wooden pallets

palletsA vast majority of home improvement stores like the ones listed above, as well as most pharmacy and craft stores, have their shipments of products delivered on wooden pallets. These wooden pallets are the main ingredient in most DIY projects, as you can disassemble or assemble them in any manner you deem fit. Rather than dishing out a hundred of dollars to purchase slabs of 2×4’s, you can get these wooden pallets for free by any department store dumpster and use them to build any furniture you can imagine.

Removing the nails of these pallets enables you to line up the slabs of wood and build a bar in any particular pattern you want and any size you want. If you feel like leaving these pallets intact, you can create an offset design that stands out and, if stacked in particular ways, can create storage space for items facing the exterior. This enables you to stack any items you want in these built in storage slabs- creating the ultimate decor at a reasonable price.

  • Barrels and Canoes

If you are leaning against wood pallets, options like barrels and canoes are your next best bet. Wood barrels are harder to barrelsfind, but they provide the best overall option for visual appeal. These barrels can range in a variety of sizes, but the most common 3-foot high barrels are the perfect bar height and cost next to nothing. The canoe option falls into the same boat (pun intended), as the salvaged canoes provide a great design for a bar counter top- just needing a slab of glass on top to provide that rustic see through look with a clean, clear surface.

Whatever option you decide to choose in relation to wood, just remember to stain and finish it to the color of your liking. This staining brightens or darkens the colors to provide a newer, more appealing look. Also, if the wood is splintering or splaying in sections, you can sand the wood down before staining it-giving you a bar that looks brand new! Now that your bar is decided, let’s move on to the next step.

Wall Decor

‘Wall I’ll be darned’. No laugh- tough crowd. Creating wall related cheap man cave decorations revolves around the concept of recycling and reusing. Bottle cap art is a major thing I have listed in another post, as they can be moved around and colored to create any design you could image at zero cost to you.

Other wall decor options relate to the themes you chose. If you are going for a hunting themed man cave, you have the options of placing spent casings or arrows on the wall, creating wall art in the shape of a weapon or animal that you have hunted or want to hunt. Bow strings or camping strings can by stretched out to create a two dimensional rendition of whatever your imagination desires.

If you are going for a car or motorcycle theme, there are a ridiculous amount of options you can choose from to create wall art. Outside of your basic pictures and posters, you can create your custom DIY wall decor from a variety of car parts you have replaced. If you have spare time, junk yards have a variety of cars where you can gather up steering wheels and handles or console faces that can be used to create clocks or car themed man cave decor that will be unique to your man cave. Garage sales are another unique place to gather up potential supplies to decorate your wall in a manner that suite your desires for your set budget.

Entertainment Area

So many options pertaining to wood here, but we will expand to other options as well. Starting with wood- pallets and vintage furniturecrates are your friend. Remember this from earlier? Wood can be shaped and formed into anything you can imagine; whether its an entertainment center or side mounts for storage or memorabilia displays. The only disadvantage of these wood DIY projects is that they may not fit the theme you are going for.

To counter the rustic look that wood offers, modern and industrial work was formed. Broken slabs of marble, granite, and other rock material are commonly tossed aside for recycle or trash scraps. These materials, much like that of car coils and metal car scraps, can be used to create that industrial looking entertainment center for all your guests to see. Combine these parts with the wood you got from pallets or barrels and you have an ‘old meets new’ look for an extremely small fraction of the cost of purchasing the materials from a company.

Whatever route you decide to take, do not rush it- gather the materials and build an entertainment center design as you get the parts. If you have excess parts left over from the entertainment center blue print, then start mapping out what to do for your next project: furniture.

Furniture Options

This aspect of man cave decorations should be your final step in finalizing your DIY man cave. Wood, metal scraps, elements from your kitchen or backyard- all of these can be used to create a specialty furniture piece at a low cost. A quick google search will show videos and blueprints on how to create your very own pallet set piece. Here is an example from YouTuber IdeasCreativeSB:

What’s your budget?

You have an idea of what you want, and now you have the platform of how to obtain it. Whether you want to use wooden pallets, barrels, or materials from a scrapyard, take what you get and make it your own! If you have any other ideas for DIY materials, feel free to leave them in the comments believe for myself and others to respond to!





6 thoughts on “Cheap Man Cave Ideas – Amazing and Affordable”

  1. Another great article. I love the wood Pallette setup in the video! That would be so awesome in my friend’s Pennsylvania property! I don’t like bottle caps for decor, as they look cheap. I like to shop cheap, but I don’t want it to look cheap. I like the idea of wooden barrels and putting a glass top over it over the canoes. You’ve got a great imagination. Thanks for the article.

    1. Thank you! I tend to migrate into antique shops and art shows to get an idea of what people are doing with common items. You would be amazed at what you can make from basic items we come across each day/week.

  2. Thanks for creating a website that has some cool ideas about how to turn your garage or basement into a cool place to get together with friends and entertain them.

    Using old wooden pallets is a great idea to build things on a low cost budget. One other thing I have found is free stuff on craigslist to use with or without pallets to make things to put in your mancave.

    If you have any other new ideas please let me know about them, thanks again.

    1. Craigslist is a great place to find items for cheap- same with an app called NextDoor. There are so many places to find things for cheap that people discard. Garage sales are the best as people often toss away valuable objects for nickels and dimes. Thank you for reading and mentioning craigslist for the other readers!

  3. Hey Andrew,

    Honestly, I have never thought of such a beautiful concept of making best out waste:)

    You have given so many ideas but the most I like the idea of old meets new – combining the rustic look of wood with Broken slabs of marble, granite, and other rock materials trash scraps and creating the Industrial looking entertainment center.


    1. I love the old meets new concept, as it combines the best of both worlds! I love rustic looking tables and chairs, but I am fond of industrial bars and entertainment centers. So i thought why not both! Thank you for the response!

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