4 Easy Ways to Upgrade Your Home Bar
If you’re like me, having a bar at home is like having a washer and dryer: a life-improving luxury, but not a necessity. (There are other ways to get clean clothes and great cocktails.)
READ: How to Stock Your Home Bar
However, creating an at-home bar is definitely on my life bucket list, and I intend to tackle the project in steps — a cocktail shaker here, a bar tray there — until I’ve achieved an awesome home bar. To make sure I’m going about it right, though, I checked in with Jeffrey Beers of the interior design and architecture firm Jeffrey Beers International, who’s designed bars for celebs like Jean-Georges, Daniel Boulud, Jay Z and more.
Whether you’re a homeowner who is interested in actually building a custom bar (lucky!), or you’re an urban apartment-dweller simply looking to choose a cool bar cart, Beers’ tips will help guide you on a practical and aesthetic level. Plus, we found bar furniture and accessories that align with Beers’s suggestions. (Worst case scenario, you just save these smart ideas to your "dream house" Pinterest board for the day when you’re ready to upgrade from a liquor cabinet to a dedicated space from which to serve drinks.)
READ: 15 Great Gifts for Home Mixologists
"To make a bar last, I'm a believer in concrete and steel," says Beers. "If you’re using wood, I personally like teak and a Brazilian wood called ipe. In the stone family, granite is the most common and safest because it is dense and resistant to stains like spilled red wine. Yet, personally, I find it boring and prefer to work with quartzite that looks more like marble. Marble, as well as zinc, are beautiful, but keep in mind they give a very traditional, European aesthetic, and require a fair amount of upkeep."
Recommendation: Marlow Felix Bar Cart with forged iron, stone, marble and mirror. $394 at Houzz.
(Houzz.com / StyleCaster.com)
"I'm a fan of stainless steel for its resilience, its crisp, nautical feel, and its low-maintenance quality: It never rusts," says Beers. "If you pair stainless steel hardware with wood, you have a very yacht-club feel; otherwise it looks cool and modern against concrete and polished steel."
Recommendation: Easton Stainless Steel Serving Tray. $49.95 at Crate & Barrel.
(CrateandBarrel.com / StyleCaster.com)
"Brass is the iconic metal for bars and I love it, but it does demand a lot of upkeep and polishing as it easily discolors," says Beers. "It can be worth it if you like the look."
Recommendation: Oscarine Lucite Bar Cart. $695 at Anthropologie.
(Anthropologie.com / StyleCaster.com)
"Mirrors are fantastic, and a key component to the design of any bar," says Beers. "They're normally placed with the back bar display; the mirror goes on the back wall first and the shelves are installed onto it. I'll often take a strip of mirror and angle it 15 to 20 degrees in order to reflect the whole bar scene."
Recommendation: Rosette Wall Mirror. $527 at Ethan Allen.
(EthanAllen.com / StyleCaster.com)