A custom-built home bar can be expensive. If you can’t swing one, though, you can still create the private party area of your dreams. On a budget, you can turn an old piece of furniture like a cabinet, chest, or console into a home bar. Proof: This swanky bar that designer Lauren Lozano Ziol of design firm SKIN crafted from an antique cabinet. We tapped Ziol for her advice on how to replicate the look. “The hunt for something cool to revitalize is always so fun but also a challenge and gets you to think out of the box and be super creative,” she says. Here’s her step-by-step guide to DIYing your own home bar from a piece of furniture.
How to Turn Furniture Into a Home Bar:
1. Go to your favorite local antique stores or look online at places like eBay and Chairish to find pieces of furniture that can be revitalized. Consoles, chests, buffets, and cabinets can all be turned into cool bars. Lozano Ziol recently took her client’s family armoire and turned it into a bar by removing the drawers and making them into pull-out shelves to mix drinks on.
2. Plan out how you would use the space and where everything will fit. Determine where you want to store the barware and drinks. How will someone mix and serve on it? How will you style everything on it? “You may have to open up the back so you have a place for the server to store glassware and beverages,” the designer explains.
3. If you plan to transform an armoire with opening front doors, you can use the shelving or add more shelving to store your home bar necessities.
4. Reconfigure your piece. You can enlist a carpenter for help, or you can buy premade materials like shelves, brackets, and hardware to fix it up yourself. It depends on the level of DIY the piece needs and if you’re up for doing it all on your own.
5. Paint the exterior of the piece a fun color. Swap or paint the hardware. You can even use wallpaper to embellish the back of the shelves. Get creative with it!
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