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Beautiful Wet Bar Ideas for Modern-Day Living!

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I am a firm believer that your house should work for you, not the other way around.  Space that isn’t being using to aid your daily life is wasted space.  Sometimes, you have to think beyond an area’s intended use to imagine the possibilities it holds!  So let’s talk about ideas for updating a wet bar that were popular in so many tract homes back in the day.

Wet bars in the family/living room are out-of-date with today’s home design and so often go unused, but there they sit…taking up space.  So, if your home has a wet bar and you never use it, why leave it as a wet bar when you could turn it into something functional for you and your family?!

My home was built in the late ’80s and came equipped with an awesome mirrored and brass wet bar in our informal family room.  Score!  {Just kidding}   The truth is, whenever we have people over, everyone seems to gather in the kitchen, after all, it’s the heart of the home!  And my home is a tri-level, meaning that my family room is about 1/2 a story below my kitchen, making it even more inconvenient and awkward to be down there mixing drinks.  Plus, the kids and their friends are down there playing video games and watching movies, so it’s really not a convenient adult entertaining space.  Every day I look at my unused wet bar and dream about what I could be doing with this space instead.

TIDBTIS-&-TWINE-80s-Wet-Bar

Beyond updating the countertop and painting the cabinets, though, we haven’t made any progress.  Time, money, and a slew of other more important updates hasn’t made this area a priority for me, but that doesn’t stop me from planning ahead as to what I could do with this space.

Ideas for Updating a Wet Bar

1.  Desk

The space could function well as a desk area, but it would require the cabinets to be reconfigured to desk height and to allow for space for a chair.  If you’re already planning a remodel, though, a desk station with some functional cabinetry above could work well in the space.  It could house a family computer, be a spot for kids to do homework, or could even be used as a craft area for the kids.

{via Terrat Elms Interior Design}
{via Terrat Elms Interior Design}
{via Houzz}
{via Houzz}

2.  Built-in Storage

The addition of upper cabinets above the base could offer tons of additional storage.  You could even design a piece to look like freestanding furniture.

{via Stonewood LLC}
{via Stonewood LLC}

Bathroom Linen Closet

3. Snack Station

An easy conversion for an ’80s wet bar would be to use it as a snack station instead!  With the addition of a small beverage center, the space could be used to store kids drinks and snacks.

Beverage Fridge

4.  Wine Bar

Wine storage tends to be more popular in new homes than a wet bar, and with the addition of some open store above, an existing wet bar can instantly be converted to a wine bar!

{via Artistic Designs for Living}
{via Artistic Designs for Living}

5.  Bookcase/Shelving

Like mine, many of the 80s wet bars have mirror-backed walls.  A little drywall, some paint, and a few shelves and the wet bar is transformed into stylish display shelving.  And shelving used floor to ceiling would then look like a built-in bookcase!

{via Ken Gutmaker Photography}
{via Ken Gutmaker Photography}
{via Best & Company}
{via Best & Company}

6. Reading Nook

A cozy corner to snuggle, read, and nap could be just the thing for an informal family room!  Just make sure there is adequate lighting in the space so that it’s truly functional as a reading nook.

{via Visbeen Architects}
{via Visbeen Architects}

7. TV Area

If the positioning in the room is right, consider removing the existing cabinetry and add a flat screen TV instead!  Doing so will create a nice housing for the TV and related components, while still making use of the recessed space.

{via Skyring Architects}
{via Skyring Architects}

8. Modern-Day Wet Bar

If you’re wet bar is functional and useful to you but you don’t love the ’80s look, consider making a few updates to make it more contemporary.  The addition of a tiled backsplash, upper cabinets, and a beverage center can make all the difference.

{via Harry Braswell}
{via Harry Braswell}
{via Studio 80 Interior Design}
{via Studio 80 Interior Design}

9. Push Forward

If you really don’t need the space, considering pushing the wall forward so that it’s flush to make more space in whatever room is on the other side of the wall!  If you don’t need more space in one room, you might need it in the other!

I don’t have any immediate plans for updating our wet bar….well, I might have a handyman remove the mirror and dated brass trim….but if I ever do, I’d like to add glass-front upper cabinets for some additional storage of vases and serving pieces.

So what do you think of these ideas for updating a wet bar?

’80s wet bar – Celebrate It or Update It?

Tidbits&Twine - Signature

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