There’s nothing like a hotel style minibar to bring a touch of boutique glamour and decadence to the home, or even help you pretend to be on holiday. Lingering over drinks, long or short, with good company is a lovely way to pass time at home, especially while the evenings are still dark and chilly. Some might even say it is hygge. So a home bar cart is a great way to brighten up an unassuming corner, and has the added convenience of making it easier to live the good life, being always ready for a spontaneous slosh of sauce.
To make my bijou Gin Bar, I transformed a tired old tray from a charity shop and displayed it in front of my treasured vintage kitsch classic, a Tretchikoff Blue Lady print. Using a little leftover turquoise eggshell to paint for the tray handles and sides, the colour relates perfectly to the unusual skin tone in the portrait. Next I found a sheet of gin themed giftwrap to decoupage the central platform. It’s a simple technique to try at home. Simply cut out pieces of paper (the smaller the better to prevent air bubbles), glue on with PVA and cover with several layers of clear water based acrylic varnish.
One essential ingredient is lighting. Glass drinks bottles in different colours always look fabulous when lit from behind or underneath. This is relatively easy to achieve using a simple LED ribbon or strip, or a small string of fairy lights.
If money is no object you can invest in brass and marble bar cart, or even a rotating globe . But if space is limited, you can confine your bar to a lowly shelf, and instantly elevate its status within the room. Dressing in a mini-bar is a great way to break up endless book spines, which can be visually dominating. Using a tray allows you to curate your collection of bottles and vessels, keep everything together and protect the surface underneath from any stray drips.
For those that take simple pleasure from using beautiful everyday objects, there is a plethora of paraphernalia available to accessorise with, from whale shape bottle openers to jiggers and spoons in glamorous gold or copper, all to help you turn a little tipple into an event.
If mass produced mid-Century art, upcycling or even alcohol aren’t for you, there’s no reason why you can’t make a delightful display of delicate vintage teacups and a teapot. Choose whatever colour scheme, design aesthetic and drinks selection you like. The only rule is it must please both palette and peeper.