Build a Vintage-Inspired Liquor Cabinet

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Hi, guys! It's Mandi. Elsie's bar cart posts always leave me swooning! I love to experiment with making cocktails, and I have a bit of my own liquor collection, but I can't leave everything out on display, on account of my little exploring toddler. In lieu of storing away the alcohol in a kitchen cupboard (boring!), I decided to build a cupboard to hang in my dining room for after-dinner drinks. Since I also love the look of vintage signage, I thought why not combine the two with one project? So here it is—my wall-mounted liquor cabinet that masquerades as a vintage sign. Do you think it's fooling anyone with that cocktail shaker hanging out on top?

Check out my detailed instructions below to make your own cabinet just like this one! You may even be able to use leftover materials from other projects to help save money on supplies like wood glue, brads, paint, and even lumber.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Lumber Needed:
-four 1" x 3" x 6' pieces of premium pine – $5.86 x 4 = $23.44
-one 1" x 3" x 4' piece of premium pine – $3.82
-one 1" x 2" x 4' – $3.29
-one 1" x 4" x 4' piece of premium pine – $4.58
-two 1" x 6" x 6' piece of lumber – $12.54 x 2 = $25.08
-one 1/4" x 2" x 4' plywood – $9.55

Total cost of lumber: $69.76

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Other Materials:
-4 small hinges – $2.64 (for a pack of two) x 2 = $4.80
-1 magnetic cabinet catch – $1.14
-1 can of white primer – $3.77
-1 can of white spray enamel – $3.98
-1/2 pint wood stain and/or black spray paint/primer combo – $4.50
-180-grit sandpaper – $3.97
-1 1/4" wire brads – $1.30
-8 oz wood glue – $3.97
-contact paper
-masking tape + masking paper (you may use newspaper)
-cabinet mounting hardware (options vary)

Rough cost of other materials: $27.43

Tools:
-power drill and drill bits

-level
-tape measure
-hammer
-respiration mask
-marker
-craft blade + cutting surface
-chop saw (optional—you can have your lumber cut at the lumber yard)
-power sander (optional)

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step One: If you do not have a chop saw, you'll need to bring these measurements with you to the lumberyard to have your lumber cut for you.

Cut each of the four 6' long 1x3s into two 34" pieces. This will give you 8 planks for the door of the cabinet. Cut the 4' long 1×3 and cut the 4' long 1×2 into 34" long pieces to add the last two planks you need for the door. You should have 10 planks total, measuring to 24" wide when laid side by side.

Cut the 4' long 1×4 into two 2' pieces. These will be the top and bottom rails to secure the planks of the door.

Cut one of the two 6' long 1x6s into two 2' pieces and one 22.5". Cut the other 1×6 into two 34" pieces. These will be the sides and inside shelf of your cupboard.

Cut the 1/4" plywood down to 24" x 34". This will be the back piece of the cupboard.

Lay out all of the pieces to make sure your boards are cut correctly before beginning step two.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Two: Fit together the sides and back of the cupboard with wood glue. Hammer in wire brads to hold the frame together as the wood glue dries. You may need someone's help to keep the wood from shifting while hammering.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Three: Find the middle of the cupboard and mark it with a pencil. Use glue to fit the middle shelf into place, making sure it's completely level before hammering into place from the sides and back.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Four: Put together the planks for the door. Lay out all of the 10 planks and use wood glue to affix the top and bottom rail (the two 1x3s). Then hammer into place from the back of the door.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Five: Sand down the cabinet and door with 180-grit sandpaper, preparing it for paint.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Six: Prime and paint the cupboard, and in-between coats, work on the door. To achieve the antiqued look of my door, I stained it with black onyx wood stain and then covered the door with a light coat of black spray paint/primer. As soon as I finished spraying the door, I wiped the paint with a rag. You may wish to skip the staining and just paint the door. The choice is yours!

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Seven: Print out the L template I made (part one, two, and three), tape it to a window, cover it with contact paper, and trace the L onto the contact paper with a marker. Then cut out the L to make the contact paper into a stencil. Make sure to preserve the two islands in the L.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Eight:  Carefully lay the contact paper stencil and islands onto the middle of the cabinet door, pressing them into place. Spray with a few light coats of paint. When the paint dries, remove the stencil and cover any fuzzy edges with a small paint brush and black paint. To give a more antique look, rough up the pristine paint job with some low-grit sandpaper.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Nine: Now it's time to hang the cupboard! The hanging hardware you need depends on where you are hanging the cabinet. I used these toggle bolts to secure the cupboard to drywall in addition to anchoring the cabinet into two wall studs.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Ten: Evenly space the hinges onto the inside of the cabinet door. Drill pilot holes and then screw the hinges into place. Have someone help you hold the door up to the cabinet wall, mark the holes of the hinges, drill pilot holes, then screw the hinges into place.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Step Eleven: Attach the magnetic closure to the cabinet wall below the middle shelf. Align the corresponding magnetic catch and attach it to the door.

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!Now it's time to fill up your cabinet! It's a bit roomy in there, but that leaves you plenty of space to buy larger bottles of your favorites. The more the merrier!

No room for a bar cart in your home? Build this wall-mounted liquor cabinet that looks like a vintage sign!This cabinet is a great space saver! If you need a place to make the drinks, instead of just storing your alcohol, simply mount a deep shelf to the wall below the cabinet. Pretty and functional—I love it! Mandi

Credits // Author and Photography: Mandi Johnson, Photos edited with Spring and Valentine of the Signature Collection.

  • That’s a genius idea!! I think I’ll have to steal it 🙂

  • thanks for sharing this diy! i’ve been scared to commit to a bar cart for months because of the tiny people who visit our house!

  • I love this! It is so cool and lovely! I don’t have an abundance of liquor (in fact, we only have beers and the ingredients for a Manhattan. haha) But I couldn’t definitely see us using this for other stuff like my collection of elephants and then just leave the door off!

    xoxo
    Taylor

  • I am not handy when it comes to lumber work but i love this idea!
    XOXO JuJu
    http://jujusmoments.blogspot.com/

  • I LOVE this! My hubby and I were just looking for a bar for our living room and the Crate and Barrel ones although beautiful had super scary price tags. This is perfect timing, thanks!

  • You have the greatest ideas! I would love to make a simple wooden sign with the same technique… any idea where I could have a custom stencil laser cut with my logo? I don’t want to cut it myself.

  • $100 for a place to store liquor?!? Seems a bit pricey to me. It’s cute, though!

  • Oh my goodness, how pretty! A difficult DIY but it looks like well worth it!

  • I love the idea of a floating cabinet! It saves so much space! 🙂

    http://everydayingrace.blogspot.ca/

  • I love this cabinet…its gives a super vintage look, love it!

    xo, Hems
    http://agoldentulip.blogspot.com/

  • Perfect idea! Something like this would be great to store other things too. Now just to decide what to keep in it, hmmm.

  • Thankfully my little girl isn’t even two yet, so I won’t have to worry about that for a while. It’s something that I considered, though! I don’t even know if I’ll be a person who always has alcohol in her house. I was never a rebellious teenager, but you just never know what your own teens will be like. Sigh.

  • I think I’m going to make this for my room to store make-up!

  • Love this idea! The beau and I were just deciding if a bar cart was the way to go but he wasn’t fond of the idea of liquor just sitting out in the open. This solves all the issues! Thanks Mandi!

    xxKristina
    http://battleskn.blogspot.com/

  • I love this Mandi! I currently have all of our booze in a pantry cupboard, but this project would certainly free up a cupboard for some of my kitchen gadgets! Cute!

    Jo
    http://www.womaninreallife.com/

  • Drinks cabinets are always a good idea..although I would add a lock and key…and keep the key in my pocket!!
    http://vodkaandarose.blogspot.co.uk

  • I’m not a drinker but I love the treatment you gave the wood. Bookmarking for future use. 🙂

  • I visit your site every day, sometimes multiple times a day. Aren’t you getting enough traffic (Emma did say ‘million dollar business’) that fly-in over content ads aren’t necessary?

    I despise those ads. I shouldn’t have to ‘close’ anything. I will not be visiting anymore,

    Thanks

  • i absolutely love this! my husband is the craftier one, so i’ll have to show him this. thanks for sharing!

  • That looks SO perfect.

    http://juliettelaura.blogspot.com

  • You guys are so clever to do this! Even the type font is awesome. Great job 🙂

    Hannah xx

    http://hannahbeths.wordpress.com/

  • Dado joinery would be preferable to any option, but most people don’t have the tools to do those. Screws are good too, but honestly, heavy duty wood glue (which is much stronger than one might think) and nails is all you need for a little cabinet like this that will stay mounted to the wall. 🙂

  • This DIY project is really easy and chic!
    http://fashion-soup.com/

  • Great idea and tutorial! And if you wanted the cabinet to go the long haul, using screws in its construction will make it last!

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