Saturday, October 16, 2010

Details Details: The Bar

While we are waiting for our pro pics to come (which may be a while), I am going to use this time to go back and fill you all in on the projects that I have yet to tell you about.  I was waiting to tell y'all about these projects until they were finished, but it turns out that most of them didn't get finished until a day or two before the wedding so there was just no time.  First up:  the bar!

Way back in the day I blogged about how we wanted a self-serve bar, but our venue did not allow glass beer bottles.  If we were serving beer, it had to be kegs or cans.  After much research and deliberation about our options, we decided to go balls to the wall and build a full on bar with a dual carbon dioxide tap system so no one would have to hand pump the kegs.  

So how do you build a bar?  Turns out it's not that difficult - it's just time and labor intensive.  The Mister designed the whole thing in his head.  He never drew out any plans or looked anything up online.  We went to Home Depot and bought some 2x4s, finish grade plywood and trim for the corners; ordered a CO2 tap system online; and finished it with some cherry wood stain and (the real key element for a classy looking bar) marine varnish.   Neither of us had ever heard of marine varnish until we asked someone at Home Depot what we should use on a bar top to keep it fully sealed from moisture.  Marine varnish is what is used on boats and  We both probably lost a few brain cells just being around this stuff, and we had to keep our garage door cracked open for about a week straight to get the smell out.  But it works and gave the bar a super high gloss finish.

I know, I know, you're thinking JUST SHOW US THE PICTURES ALREADY!!!  I could swear that took pictures of us building the bar, but I can't find them anywhere, so I just have the finished product.  I looked through our friends pictures that we have so far of our wedding too, and could only find one of the bar.  So here it is, sitting in our garage.

the front

the back

A close up of the taps and drip tray.  The grate cover for the drip tray flew out of the bar on the freeway on the way to the wedding.  Our friend made us a make-shift one cover the day of the wedding at his dad's sheet metal shop.  

And actually set up at the wedding.  Photo by our friend June.  You can see the make-shift cover, and that we served Bud Light and Blue Moon.

Okay, time for some words of advice.  First of all, we had one full sized keg and one pony keg and apparently dual tap systems don't like having two different sized kegs attached to it at the same time.  I was oblivious to this during the wedding, but I noticed that the pony keg of Blue Moon was gone really, really early and asked someone what was up.  They said that they couldn't get the Bud Light to come out until the Blue Moon was gone.  So moral of the story:  get same sized kegs.

Second word of advice - building a bar like this will NOT save you money.  According to our receipts, this bar cost us $575.90 to build.  But we were okay with the cost because we felt that the bar was one of the key elements in establishing the mood and look we wanted for our wedding.  By far, the tap system was the greatest expense.  That alone was about $340.  We are planning on selling it to recoup some of our expense, though it breaks my heart a little bit.  I'm attached to it at this point, so I'm hoping we can sell it to someone we know that way we can see it and use it again!  We've actually had several friends and family members say that they want it, so hopefully that works out.  If no one is willing to pay a good price for it, I'd rather keep it in our own backyard for all those keggers we throw (HA!).  


Kristin - Miss Glasses said...

Holy cow! Making your own bar seems intense. It came out beautiful though! It seems like a useful thing to have around if you can't find anyone though. No, seriously, cocktail paaaaaaarty!

Smiling is Good for Your Teeth said...

Oh wow! That looks AWESOME! He did a great job! It looks like you will be having him make some more household items!!

Dancy said...

THIS.IS.AWESOME! If I had the $ I'd buy it from you. You should keep it & use it when you have parties. It's a great way to always incorporate something that was at your wedding. :)

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