We made it!Yes kids, we made it through the first holiday of the holiday season. Technically yes, Halloween is a holiday but it'??s not one of the BIG holidays. In my household, Halloween usually entails sitting around with a bottle of wine, shooing teenagers with pillowcase candy bags off of my front porch and making sure to sneaking extra candy to the kids with really cute costumes (hello'?¦ three year old dressed like a tiger? Waaay cute!)
Anyway, around these parts Thanksgiving is the first of the major holidays simply because we are required by law to visit both of our families over a three day period even though they are distanced by nearly 300 miles of mountain and farmland. Don'??t get me wrong, I love both of my families even though both of them are kind of crazy and a little nutty and I swear that some of them are senile even though they'??ve not even hit 40. Did I just describe your family? I thought so.
What comes of this pre-mid-life senility you ask? A strong drink. You know what I'??m talking about. Sometimes a French Gimlet is just what the doctor ordered to take the edge off of that family dinner with some aunt is STILL asking when you'??re going to have children even though for you, walking the dog takes an act of Congress (could you imagine getting FEMA involved in the changing of diapers?). And just in case, a French Gimlet is two parts Vodka or Gin, one part St. Germaine, and a half part lime juice. Shake. Pour. Guzzle.
You know you'??re making one right now.
Suffice it to say, the holiday season only stresses the importance of a well stocked bar. In the home of a designer (I mean me), it has to look pretty too. Actually, the word pretty oversimplifies the premise behind my bar. I have two rules '?? liquor in ugly bottles get poured into decanters. Hold up. That'??s only one rule.
So because I love you I'??m going to give you a little early Holiday present. No, I'??m not sending you each crystal decanters. That would be nice but Santa has already maxed out a credit card this season. Just a few of the secrets I use for keeping my own bar.
Un '?? Treat bottles of liquor like art. I love the deco lines of the French St. Germaine, the wax drippings of Makers Mark, the Italian text of a bottle of Aperol. Display them proudly.
Deux '?? Decanters are a girl'??s best friend. Decanters can be used to hide that embarrassing bottle of rum that you die for but are embarrassed to keep in public eye. They'??re also great for banishing stained, dirty bottles. And for me, they are another reason to buy awesome pieces of gorge barware!
Trois '?? Vintage baby. I'??m a flea market whore (can I use that word on this site?). One of my market passions? Vintage barware. I can'??t get enough of the 60'??s shakers with animated recipes printed on their thick glass sides. Dorothy Thorpe glassware. Plastic stir sticks from Las Vegas casinos since destroyed. Can someone say character?
Quatre '?? Kitsch. There, I said it. Kitsch. A little story. My decanter of Irish whiskey wears a fur hat. It'??s a miniature hat, an ornament from Mt. Rushmore, but a fur hat nonetheless. Everyone loves it. Mix in a little bit of something crazy. Something that says a little about you.
Cinq '?? Function. It isn'??t a word used exclusively by Dyson to sell vacuums. A great bar should be functional above all. If you have an ice bucket, make sure you have ice tongs. Have the liquor for a martini? Please make sure you have a shaker with a lid.
Six '?? Home sweet Home. A bar deserves a proper home. Mind you this could be as simple as a great lacquered tray on a side table or as complex as a piece of furniture outfitted with all the bells and whistles. Or if you'??re like me and like your drinks to come to you, a trolley like the Mad Men-esque numbers from Society Social.
Phew. I think I may have to make a drink after that. Don'??t tell me I never gave you anything.
Brandon Smith is principal of the San Diego based spatial design company D.Coop. Focusing on sustainable, workable and budget friendly design, he provides In The Box solutions to Out of the Box questions. You can follow him on Twitter @dcoopsd or on his wildy popular blog A D.Coop Bloogie.
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