Bette Davis

God, what kind of woman do you think I am? You don’t think I’d welcome you into my living room and not serve you a drink, do you?

Jan Showers

Every modern-day salonniere needs to have at least one fabulous bar cart in her home for entertaining. Not only are they beautiful, but they can be used in so many ways – for cockails, for tea with a tea service and tiered silver trays stocked with macarons, scones and tea sandwiches and for auxiliary serving during dinner. Bar carts are also lovely for serving after-dinner drinks outside on a terrace where it is difficult to bring things out at one time.

Bar carts make wonderful tables at the end of a sofa or banquette. You can accessorize them with barware or books and certainly a lamp if needed. They are also a wonderful place to display a collection of glass, especially in front of a window.

There are a number of good-looking bar carts on the market including these 10 favorites. Invest in a high quality cart, you’ll use it for years to come. All three of the bar carts I own are vintage pieces that I purchased from  AD 100 interior designer Jan Showers, who has one of the chicest vintage furniture shops in the country. The bonus is that her bar carts all come with great party juju since she sources them in Paris at grand estate sales and the finest antique stores. You can see all her vintage carts here. Jan also has her own furniture collection, which includes bar carts that are reproductions based on vintage designs.

Jan Showers

Jan, you’re known for your bar carts. What are your top tips for accessorizing them?

First, make sure to outfit your bar cart with an ice bucket and tongs, plenty of mixers and a good supply of basic liquors. Use the lower shelves for your glassware and bottles. Then, make sure to personalize your cart. I suggest displaying picture frames or interesting collections. For example, I have collected antique and vintage barware for many years and display my silver shakers, jiggers, decanters and stirrers on my drinks cart. Another fun touch is to place a lamp on top of your bar cart if there’s room. It’s practical and bit unexpected.

Jan Showers


Thanks, Jan, and santé!

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