How to Style the Perfect Bar Cart

Last Updated: Apr 24, 2018

This article was originally published on This is Glamorous

WHILE WE LOVE our work here at TIG and wouldn’t trade what we do for anything, sometimes doing what you love can involve long hours, and at those times (especially on Friday or Saturday evenings) having a glass of wine or a cocktail after finishing up can make things feel a little more celebratory. And having a well-stocked and beautiful bar cart elevates things even more, making late nights at work a little more posh, and perhaps even enjoyable.

A fixture in many homes today, the bar cart actually first made its debut during the Victorian Era (1837-1901) as a tea trolley. By the 1950’s, The Great Depression and World War II had passed and there was a need for celebration. Parties, both hosting and attending them, became popular in homes and a mobile bar cart that was fully stocked was the perfect way to entertain friends and family. Hollywood also played a major role in the bar cart’s ubiquity, with its many appearances in classic films in the 50’s and 60’s, such as Grace Kelly’s High Society(1965).

During the 1970’s, however, things got a little decadent with the building of permanent, built-in wet bars (complete with running water) in homes. The use of bar carts faded away during this time. The trend, thankfully, did not last and people moved again to the versatile and mobile bar cart, which is as popular as ever today.

And while we’re definitely not ready to build an actual bar in the office, we did happen upon a beautiful brass and mirrored bar cart in an antique shop across the park that is perfect to cap off those late nights at work. This week, we’re collaborating with Shutterfly to bring you this chic guide to creating the perfect bar cart for your home or office. As our homes are a reflection of ourselves, finding ways to express our personalities has always been important. Below, we’ve outlined ways to make your bar cart reflect your exquisite taste.

A well-styled bar cart always begins with a plan. Use a tray to divide the cart into sections. We’ve used a lucite tray from Shutterfly to corral bottles of liquor. The tray itself was created easily by uploading an iPhone photo of palm trees in Spain, adding a fun, tropical vibe to our bar area. Alternatively, you could create your own artwork, and upload a scan at Shutterfly to create a different effect. The possibilities are endless.

A gallery wall adds a focal point and height to your bar cart and sets the mood. It could be abstract art printed on canvas, or framed photographs. We created ours by uploading iPhone photos of the same palm trees as used for the lucite tray, as well as a beach scene taken at the Mediterranean last summer, to create framed prints.

It goes without saying that pretty bottles will enhance the look of your bar cart. Of course, quality also matters, so if your favourite spirits and liquor do not come in attractive bottles, you can always decant them in lovely cut crystal decanters, or even decant them into empty spirit and liquor bottles that are more attractive.

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