A Wooden Beer Barrel Bar – And Other Ideas

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A home bar is something that we invest time and money into, so we want to make sure we nail it, when we build it. A wooden beer barrel bar could be the way to nail it. Your home bar can be made with a variety of materials, but wood is the most popular choice, which is handy.

It is always good to have a plan before you start to build your bar, unless of course you hire someone to build it for you. Wood is expensive, but there are ways of using wood and keeping the cost down, like using old pallets.

How about adapting an object that already exists?

A Wooden Beer Barrel Bar

There is probably an endless list of objects that can be adapted into a home bar. The front end of a car is a good one, or how about an old piano? Like I said the list is probably endless, or at least very long.

The old wooden barrel has been re-purposed for many things, but it just fits well with the home bar. What better object to use for building a home bar than a wooden barrel.

The wooden barrel

We are all familiar with the wooden barrel held together by metal hoops with its bulging middle. We also know that they are used for storing beer, whiskey or wine, but that is not all.

They are used to storing many more things than beer, whiskey or wine. They also store port, sherry, cognac, oil, meat, honey and paint, that is not the complete list, but you get the picture.

History shows that the barrel has been used for centuries and it is said that they were invented by the Celts, with other references dating back to the Egyptians. A little more history of the barrel can be found in this interesting article by the Rocky Mountain Barrel Company.

The barrel s a versatile object, the garden planter is a popular one, cut in half or a third and it makes a great plant pot. Cut the base and top off a barrel and turn them into a water feature, angled with one cascading into another. How about an ice bucket, cut a barrel in half, fill it with ice and you have a large ice bucket for your garden parties.

A barrel, or several barrels can be a great object to incorporate in your home bar, as either the bar itself or as bar furniture. People have been very creative with the use of barrels in their home bar designs.

A Beautiful Barrel Bar

A Beautiful Beer Barrel Bar

When we decide on building a home bar the first thing that comes to mind is to construct a simple straight bar, or L-shaped bar using wood. This is how most people will do it, and there is nothing wrong with that, put together a plan, or get a bar plan, then build it.

Obviously we all want to put our own look to a bar, so although the outline construction may be similar, the finishing touches will differ from bar to bar.

The barrel can change the way you build a home bar, a small bar can be a case of just cutting the barrel open and adding shelves. You can leave it open, or use the cut out as a door.

What if the barrel becomes the bar itself with a bar top added?

Cut the barrel down the middle lengths ways from top to bottom and you will be left with two halves. Stand them side by side and fix them together, at the front it will look like two barrels next to each other. The back will show two open half barrels that can have shelves added for glasses or bottles. Add a long bar top from the material of your choice and you have a great looking bar.

That is just one way of using a barrel to build a home bar, but there are many others, just let your imagination run wild.

Home Bar Furniture Sets Made With Barrels

Whether you have built your home bar from barrels or not, they make great bar furniture too. A barrel bar stool can be comfortable as well as a great talking point. The barrel table can come in many designs, and barrel chairs could go with it.

The Barrel Stool

A bar stool made from a barrel needs to be carefully planned, if not they can be top-heavy and risk toppling over. The easiest way to form a comfortable stool is to cut the base and top of the barrel across the width at a height that you want the backrest to be.

This could be around 12 inches/30cm to give a good back support. Half of this would be cut down to the base and then a cushion put in for comfort. This gives us the seat part of the stool, now we just need the stand that it sits on to complete.

The stand is the most important part of the stool, it needs to be strong and sturdy and can either be fabricated for the purpose, or taken from another stool. The best type to be able to support the barrel seat would be an old industrial type base.

Of course you can use normal bar stools to go with a full height barrel table.

The Barrel Table

It is easier to create a barrel table and there are different ways to achieve it. The barrel can be cut length ways and the curved part mounted on a stand, then a top fixed to the now flat hollow side. This could be a wooden top, metal top or a glass top.

A wood or metal top means you will not see the inside of the barrel, but the glass top means you will see the inside of the barrel. If the decision is to go glass, then the inside will need to be cleaned to give a nice aesthetic finish. The inside of the barrel could be painted a color of your choice, or have a selection of items fixed in to give a decorative finish.

Alternatively the barrel can be cut in half across its width and then a top put on the open end. Again the choice of material depends on personal preference, but the same will apply if using a glass top.

The easiest way to create a table is to just add a top to a full barrel, which will work well with bar stools as it would be a high table.

The Barrel Chair

The chair is a pretty easy thing to create and you would get two chairs out of one barrel. Just cut the barrel in half across its width, decide the height of the seat base. Cut out from the height of your seat base half of the remaining height. This will give you a comfortable backrest, then cut and fix a round piece of wood on top of the seat part.

Both the seat base and the backrest can be upholstered or just have a cushion for comfort. Finishing touches can be rounding off the top of the backrest and varnishing or painting the wood.

More Barrel Creations

It really is a versatile object, not only can you make the bar itself out of barrels, but you can make all your home bar furniture too. Is there anything else we can make for our home bar with a barrel?

The answer of course is, yes.

Here are a few more ideas for your barrels, but there are more than I cover here.

The Barrel Tap

A barrel can make an interesting bar tap with the keg concealed inside. Cut a door out of one side of the barrel, fit hinges and a catch. The barrel will now hold a keg, and just fit a tap to the top and you have your beer on tap housed in an attractive barrel.

The Barrel Sink

Another interesting feature that could be part of your home bar. Cut a door like before to get access to the inside of the barrel. Get a sink that will fit into the top of the barrel and fix in place.

Run the plumbing inside the barrel and you have a great feature for your home bar. Obviously you will need access to a hot/cold water supply, as well as drainage too.

A neat way of making use of a wooden barrel.

The Dartboard Cabinet

Cut a barrel in half-length ways, this will be fixed to the wall, so it looks like half a barrel is on the wall. You then cut a section out of the front and divide into two equal halves, these will become the doors to the cabinet, so will need hinges and a catch.

On the inside of the doors you can paint with blackboard paint and they become the score board. Fix a dartboard to the wall inside the cabinet, your cloth and chalk can be kept in the base of the half barrel.

A simple and effective way to encase a dartboard.

Final Thoughts

There are many uses for the wooden barrel, whether it is an old whiskey barrel, an old beer barrel or an old wine barrel. It does not matter what was in the barrel, what matters is what you do with it now. Featuring them as part of your home bar is the perfect way to make use of old barrels.

Finding old barrels is easier than you might think. Just a quick search online reveals companies that buy and sell barrels. Ebay, Etsy and even Amazon are places that you will find plenty of barrels for sale. Depending on the condition will depend on how much a barrel will cost, but they don’t have to be expensive.

I have outlined some great ways to use the old wooden barrel as part of your home bar. I hope I have inspired you to seek out some barrels and include them in your home bar, or anywhere else you may want to incorporate them.

Have some barrel fun.

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