We're always on the lookout for new ways to up our hosting ante, and the summer bar cart might just be it.
After all, the bar cart usually only gets its time in the sun (so to speak) in the winter months, but if you're not making the most of it year round the you're missing a trick. And your garden ideas will be sorely lacking without one as soon as you invite friends or family over to spend time in your outdoor space.
We spoke with cookery writer, Skye McAlpine, on what your new cocktail area need to hit all the style marks this season.
How to style a summer bar cart
'To get started with styling up a summer bar cart, you first want to start with working out the surface area,' advises Skye. 'I'd always dreamed of having a bar cart and while we don't actually have one, my pride and joy - which we use as a bar cart - is a vintage 1950s Fornasetti fridge. It's insane, but we love it!'
'Even if you can't have a bar cart because you can't fit it in your home or on your patio then you can still create that bar moment with a little bistro table, or even the corner of whatever other garden furniture you with a tray.'
Placement of the summer bar cart is as key as figuring out what it actually is.
'It's a lovely idea to have this set up near the entrance at the space, as a way to welcome your guests,' Skye suggests.
Of course, the next step is choosing what to feature on your summer bar cart. Glasses, of course are a necessity, and you can always style with your more precious pieces, so you can show them off but you don't actually have to entrust them to your guests if you don't want to.
'I think it's nice to have a pop of colour on the rim or the foot which look great with fruit and ice,' muses Skye. 'Then I think you want to invest in a nice ice bucket. I also feel that drink twizzlers, bar tools and glass straws provide that cocktail-y feeling you're after.'
Made with one of Murano's finest glass masters, these tulip shaped tumblers are perfect for wine, water or a cocktails. There's a gorgeous pink shade we have our eye on, too.
The graphic shape of these Klevering glasses will add a cool factor to your bar cart, while the sunshine yellow base will bring the summer vibes - whatever the weather!
Lowes wine glasses
These may be wine glasses, but they'll be perfect for just about anything. The muted sage green is ideal for the minimalists around and match beautifully with the colours of the garden.
There's something inherently retro about a bar cart, so why not lean into this a little bit?
'I quite like the idea of just having like a little dish with the little retro paper umbrellas!,' says Skye. 'And a nice jar of something like maraschino cherries - just something that says this is a special moment.'
'And then some alcohol. I don't drink very much, so I typically choose based on how cool the label looks! Otherwise just go with your favourites.'
The finishing touches will make your summer bar cart shine. We're surrounded by pretty seasonal flowers in gardens, so why not make use of them? 'A peony or two in a bud vase is often all you need,' adds Skye.
'And then a little lamp is a lovely addition for when the sun goes down, rechargeable table lamps are a nice option.'
'Basically, we just need more bar cart moments!,' she concludes.
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Thea Babington-Stitt is the Assistant Editor for Ideal Home. Thea has been working across some of the UK’s leading interiors titles for nearly 10 years.
She started working on these magazines and websites after graduating from City University London with a Masters in Magazine Journalism. Before moving to Ideal Home, Thea was News and Features Editor at Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc and Country Homes & Interiors.
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