Once you’ve determined the bar type and who is providing the booze, you need to think about how your bar will look and function. After all, this will be a very popular spot throughout the night! 


The Essentials

Stocking your bar with alcohol, mixers and garnishes is only half of the battle. You will need to think through the essentials your bartender will need. This includes:

  • Wine key 
  • Bottle opener 
  • Small ice buckets with scoop (for top of bar)
  • Bar rags
  • Coolers or buckets for chilling wine and beer
  • Extra coolers for ice
  • Containers for garnishes and straws 
  • Shakers and stirrers for mixed drinks
  • Party tub + tap for kegged beer (if using)

Pro Tip: Make sure to hire a licensed bartender. 

Ask them but they plan to bring and share what you plan to provide to make sure nothing is forgotten.


The Bar Itself

It is essential to provide at least two tables per bar, one to make drinks and a bar back to hold everything you need to make the drinks. We would also recommend a linen on each table to hide the ice buckets and boxes. 

If budget allows, make a statement with your bar by upping the game on how your bar looks. Rent a pretty bar front and bar back. Add flowers, candles or other décor to really make your bar stand out.

Pro Tip: Make sure to think through where the bar should up in each event space to ensure an easy flow throughout the night.


The Glassware

Glasses can be rented from your rental company if they are not provided by your venue, caterer or bartender. Or you can choose to provide the glassware or use plasticware. Calculate how many drinks will be served and the ratio you used to purchase alcohol. Glass essentials include rocks glasses and wine glasses. 

Many bars also include highball glasses, beer glasses and champagne flutes (if serving sparkling). If you are serving a specialty cocktail, make sure to think through the type of glassware you will serve it in, such as adding a copper mug for a Moscow mule or a Collins glass for a mojito.


Keep in mind that guests will tend to want a fresh glass with each trip to the bar. 

Pro Tip: Glassware is a place you can really customize your bar and it can make a big difference in your guest experience.


Add Some Personality

Like we said, the bar is bound to be a popular spot throughout the night so let your personality shine through. Add a pretty bar menu sign that lets your guests know their options or a basket of koozies to keep their drink cool. 

Pro Tip: Big drinkers? Consider adding a specialty bar, like a whiskey bar, which will create more of an experience for your guests.


Check out our recent Every Day I’m Bustlin’ show where we discussed all things wedding bar:



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Photo Credit: Veritas Photography