How To Repurpose A Closet Into A DIY Bar

An unused closet makes for a fantastic bar addition in the corner of a communal room or even a back bedroom that you're thinking of repurposing it altogether. Adding bar amenities to the home offers you the ability to become a more effective host, and it can act as a luxurious addition that makes you fall in love with the space of your home once again. Alcohol is a large presence in modern — and even ancient — life. The National Institute of Health reports that about 55% of American adults drank alcohol within a month of answering the survey and that 85.6% of respondents (aged 18 and older) had drunk alcohol before.

Responsible drinking is always an important consideration to make, of course. But the introduction of a home bar not only allows for a more measured approach to alcohol consumption, but it can also prompt you and your family to branch out from the typical drinking habits you may support in order to enjoy a wider selection of spirits, wine, and other alcoholic beverages. Without a doubt, the easiest type of bar to install in a home is the dry bar variety. These are bar fixtures that do not require plumbing (unlike a wet bar that includes a sink), according to West + Main Homes.

Select a closet that supports your new home bar's needs

West + Main Homes reports that a shallow closet will best serve this purpose. This layout gives you the ability to reach in and grab any bottle or glassware that you might keep in the home bar conversion without having to stretch. In addition, many homes incorporate shallow closets in entryway spaces or family rooms to provide easy access to coat hangers and other communal necessities, so making use of one of these additions in the home can offer a prominent home bar. Of course, if you are going to move other items out of a closet (rather than adding something to an underutilized or unused space), finding a new home for the belongings that will be removed is important. For coats, a simple coat rack can provide a stunning alternative to an entryway and free up the required space at the same time.

As well, it's possible to design and install a new closet space in the corner of a living room that's purpose-built to support a home bar. Closets provide a unique feature in this space because the doors of the closet can be opened or closed to change the room's environment as needed. For example, opening the closet up when hosting friends or family makes for a vibrant and jovial environment, and the bar can be closed away during the day when it's not in use.

Install new hardware that displays your collection of drink varieties proudly

One of the primary draws of creating a home bar is the beautiful collection of glassware that naturally follows. Both the glasses you'll drink from and the bottles themselves create a wonderful tapestry of elegant designs, colors, and visual effects. Closets aren't designed with a home bar feature in mind, so to create the visual appeal that you're seeking, you'll likely need to gut the hardware that exists in the space already in order to make way for new bar equipment, storage racks, and a small tabletop that will be used to prepare cocktails for anyone lucky enough to enjoy the new feature.

West + Main Homes suggests taking extensive measurements within the stripped-down closet so that you can source the right-sized materials for the new installation. You can purchase slim bar tables online or at a local retailer or build one yourself. But one aspect of the new element that is crucial to get right is height and depth considerations for bottles and glassware. Many bottles are shaped similarly, but brands often produce special deals and limited editions that are housed in unique vessels that may be much wider or taller than the typical bottle. Likewise, you may typically purchase 23oz bottles of your favorite liquors but later opt for a larger, more cost-effective purchase down the line that's naturally bottled in a much taller container. Thinking ahead will ensure maximum enjoyment.

Add finishing touches to create a beautiful home bar worth showing off

Once you have established the shelving and sizing requirements, all that's left to do is painting, final additions, and stocking. Installing lighting can make the difference between a liquor cabinet and an elegant home bar. Likewise, you may want to add a mini-fridge to the space to accommodate cold beverages as well as spirits and other room-temperature favorites. West + Main Homes recommends using an electrician to set up electrical outlets or light fixtures in the space if you don't already have the necessary connections to support these installations.

Stocking the bar is the fun part. Allrecipes recommends a few essential spirits (and brand favorites among the home's residents), starting with gin, rum, tequila, and vodka. You also need some liqueurs, like amaretto and vermouth. Finally, round out the bar with tonic, fruit juices, bitters, and grenadine for a versatile and immensely fun home bar experience that even the pickiest drinker in your circle of friends can enjoy.