My husband’s birthday was few months ago. I knew for months and months before his birthday that I wanted to get him a bar cart and I looked high and low to find him THE ONE that would work best in our living room and would scratch my Mad Men-induced itch to rip out everything in my house – or at least in one room in the house – and decorate it with mid-century-inspired pieces.
This is the one I ended up with and, well, I love it.
It’s the Vitale Bar Cart from Macy’s (link here). It’s the first piece of furniture I’ve ever purchased from Macy’s and, to be honest, I’ve always sort of been turned off at the idea of purchasing furniture from a department store that I primarily associate with clothing. But, after looking at all of my standard places (West Elm, Crate and Barrel, Pottery Barn, Restoration Hardware, etc.) and not finding what I had envisioned in my head, I happened upon it at Macy’s and it was like the sky opened up and the birds starting singing and I knew we were going to friends.
I love the dull brass coloring (like it was made for the living room where it now lives) and the glass shelves. I also knew I wanted something longer – because it was what the space called for and it would actually hold quite a bit of my husband’s collection (except for the really good stuff which is still hidden away in a dark, closed cabinet we have on the other side of the room) and so would be functional as well as pretty. The price was more than I ever anticipated spending but, if learned anything in my search for the perfect bar cart, it’s that bar carts are more money than I originally anticipated.
Styling the bar cart was fun. I used things we already had on hand, although I did buy the decanter and leather coasters from Pottery Barn, grabbed the round silver tray (from the sale aisle at Target), and picked up the crystal drinking glasses somewhere along the way (Macy’s? HomeGoods?).
We really didn’t NEED any new drinkware since we basically have an entire cabinet in our kitchen dedicated to various glasses made specifically for different kinds of alcohol (wine glasses, beer mugs, beer glasses, martini glasses, margarita glasses, etc.). But the truth is that, as far as lowball glasses, we didn’t have more than two of any of them and I knew I wanted a set of at least four to set on top of the bar cart. (Ok, confession time. We did have more than two from a very modern set with a large black dot on them which did not match the living room. Always coordinate your barware with your space, right?)
Besides being super awesome in its own right, the bar cart makes me smile because it solves a little problem we’ve had since we moved into the space. You see, the corner where the bar cart now sits has been empty and sad for some time.
Since we moved in, we’d been trying to figure out what to put there and nothing seemed to make sense. We thought about a bench but it seemed unnecessary because there is a bench basically on the other side of the stairs. We were also worried that, with so many benches, it’d start looking like a waiting area or something. Mr. Smith, the doctor will see you now.
We thought about a console table. But there is a console table-like piece of furniture right across from here which we use as a stereo cabinet and that seemed like maybe one too many console tables in a small space. We thought about poufs and bookshelves and all sorts of other things and we weren’t sold on any of them and so the spot sat sad and empty for more than three years.
When there is a happy little bar cart there. And it’s perfect! (Although you may notice that we switched the little blue table and smaller lamp to the other side of the sofa and brought the floor lamp around to the bar cart side.)
Although this bar cart was by far the best one for us for this space, I did come across a few other bar carts in my bar cart mission that I thought were pretty wonderful and so I thought I’d share them with you in case any of you were bit by the bar cart bug.
This Libations Bar Cart from Crate and Barrel was a very close contender for our space, but ultimately I loved the idea of glass shelves with the dull brass and so we went with the Vitale.
The Parker Mid-Century Bar Cart from West Elm is lovely, and the price is right. I really wasn’t looking for anything that had wood in it – since we already have a lot of wood going on in the living room – but, if that wasn’t an issue for me, I really might have gone in this direction. The simple lines on this one and the combination of dark wood and brass is really quite fabulous.
There is something very sweet and wonderful about the Wooden Bar Cart from Anthropologie. The colors of it didn’t work for my living room, but I think this bar cart would look spectacular in a light, white, airy room.
I also happened upon the Threshold Wood and Brass Finish Bar Cart at Target the other day and was impressed with how stylish it was for the price. It would be a great option for someone who wanted a bar cart but didn’t have a large budget for it.
Finally, there are two bar carts over at Restoration Hardware that are just amazing. The 1930s Industrial Steel Bar Cart blows my mind and I love how awesome it would look in a very industrial space. Can you just see it up against an exposed brick wall in a loft apartment somewhere? Yes, please!
And the 1950s Milo Bar Cart is absolutely a statement piece. I love everything about it (oh the lines!) and the polished nickel is just stunning. So glamorous!