The garden bar trend has swept the nation this year, with many of us deciding we need a designated area for serving up homemade margaritas. Interior Design Masters finalist Siobhan Murphy is something of an expert in this area, with her own vintage home bar and memorable tiki bar creation in the beach hut challenge.
Garden bar ideas – create your own inspirational DIY outdoor bar to entertain from home
When we spoke to the interior designer about how to make an outdoor bar with the wow factor, she said there's one thing to look out for.
First, she recommends scouring online selling sites like Facebook Marketplace or local groups for budget finds. While there are great options online, like the Rattan Garden Bar at Aldi, you can do it much more cheaply with a bit of imagination.
The key thing, she says, is to hunt for any solid wood items that you can varnish and paint. 'I think you can use anything and customise it,' she says.
'A console table you could make into a little bar, or even if you’ve got a dining table and extended the ledge so that you’ve got a nice big surface.
'Put a nice outdoor, hardwearing paint on and it’s going to stand the test of time. Probably for a fraction of the price of buying loads of brand new outdoor furniture,' says Siobhan.
For a tropical tiki bar look, she says you can simply pick up some sheets of bamboo. A quick search on Instagram will open up a world of inspiration, with exotic-themed bars that people have made themselves.
'Get some nice festoon lights and you’ve got your own little area,' Siobhan adds. 'Then, add some colour and some plants and, obviously, booze. Get some Pina Coladas and suddenly you’re transported to Hawaii!'
Brilliant budget garden ideas – boost your outdoor space without breaking the bank
You could also try making your own DIY garden bar using old wooden pallets. Likewise, an old wooden side table or even a battered wardrobe might not look like much online - but you just need a lick of paint, some gold leaf and a vision.
Siobhan has an exciting range of homeware products with Freemans in the pipeline.
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Millie Hurst was Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home from 2020-2022, and is now Section Editor at Homes & Gardens. Before stepping into the world of interiors, she worked as a Senior SEO Editor for News UK in both London and New York. You can usually find her looking up trending terms and finding real-life budget makeovers our readers love. Millie came up with the website's daily dupes article which gives readers ways to curate a stylish home for less.
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