Brews & Eats

The coldness of the coming winter has been felt by all of us by now, with the days glooming over in favour of the looming festive period. But the dramatic shift in weather is not enough to sway us away from making the most of our outdoor spaces. Indeed, outdoor celebrations are an intrinsic part of autumnal and winter holidays – which is all the more reason you should build that outdoor bar you’ve been thinking about. Here are some simple ideas to get you started!

Planning Your Bar

There is a lot of excitement in putting together a festive garden bar of your own making, and a lot of very tempting decisions to make along the way – but it’s important not to get too ahead of yourself! Before you start making wild purchases with relation to a non-existent bar, you should first make some essential decisions regarding the basics.

For one, where will your bar be situated? You might wish to avail of handy electrical connection points and natural shelter from the elements, by positioning your garden bar by the rear wall of your home. Alternatively, you might want to create a grotto at the foot of your garden, as a sort of getaway from your home. The latter option would require a little more groundwork, including the laying of electrical cabling and the creation of a path.

Wherever your bar goes, there should be level ground below and no trees above. Where it goes will also directly inform the size of the bar, and the size of any cover you build. At the very least, a pergola-style cover for your visitors should be considered to keep everyone out of the elements.

Choosing Materials

With your basic design and location settled, you can move on to choosing materials. Wood is a strong choice for your bar’s superstructure, and of course for the bar itself, given the cheap cost of treated timber batons for framing and the hardwearing nature of hardwood slabs for your bar’s surface. A stone surface could also be cool, but would command a higher price.

Your bar will also need cladding and insulating from the inside, to make it a more comfortable place to socialise. With the right roofing in place, the elements should be of little concern; you can treat your bar like any other room, with insulation covered over by plasterboard which can then be painted or wallpapered however you please.

Finishing Touches

Next, you have the seating to consider. Quintessential bar stools could be a sweet addition, in keeping with the cosiness of a pub in the winter; alternatively, you could embrace the alpine and go for a bierkeller-style canteen table. Finally, we come to the extra bits that pull the whole thing together. This is where you can let your personality shine, though with the festive theme you might want to lean towards the Christmas spirit at first!