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Easy tips for making a pretty, practical bar cart at home

There’s something about a well-stocked bar cart that adds a touch of whimsy to a home. 

A bar cart that would make even a Jazz Age hostess proud should be a few things: three-tiered, tidy, well-stocked and mobile. 

Don’t stress too much over making the cart worthy of the Pinterest front page. The key is finding a neutral colored cart. You can find a suitable one at most big box stores, though some quick assembly will likely be required. 

You can dress up the cart with gold spray paint if you want to, but what matters more is what’s on the cart, not what it looks like. 

What you’ll need: 

Tray: A medium-size tray with handles will keep all of the bottles in one place without shifting around too much. Put this on the top tier. 

Liquor: Think of your bar cart as a mini-bar. You’ll need a good mix of whatever you think guests would want, such as gin, vodka, bourbon, tequila and rum. 

Mixers and paper straws: Little stirring sticks, patterned paper straws or whatever you think would dress up a drink appropriately. 

Fruit: Keep a small bowl of garnishes on the top tier, like lemon peels or lime wedges.

Shaker and glasses: Shaken, not stirred. Keep a cocktail shaker and proper glasses on the second tier, as well as a small ice bucket and whatever utensils you’ll need (like tongs). 

Mixers: Keep a few cans of soda, sparkling water or juice at the bottom of the cart. 

Decorations: A mixology book, vase of flowers, pretty paperweight or whatever you think would be a nice touch. 

As for what you’re mixing for guests, keep it simple with easy recipes like this classic Prohibition-era cocktail from Refinery 29.

French 75


  • 1¼ oz. gin (2½ tbsp.) 
  • ½ oz. simple syrup (1 tbsp.) 
  • ½ oz. lemon juice (1 tbsp.) 
  • Splash of Champagne 


  1. Shake gin, syrup and lemon juice and strain into rocks glass. 
  2. Top with Champagne. 


What’s your go-to drink for entertaining?

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