Whatever your style — mid-century Mad Men or the English country à la Downton Abby, it’s easy to design a designated space for cocktails and conversation. Any corner of a family room, den or rec room will do.
In a larger room, you can define a cocktail (and earl morning coffee) spot with a room divider. Use shelving and it’s easy to switch up accessories by season or whenever the fancy strikes you.
Soft, indirect lighting that’s conducive to conversation is easy if overhead lighting is on a dimmer switch. For accents lighting, thread LED strings through indoor plants — ether faux or real, we’re not judge-y — or nestled in a pretty bowl.
Seating matters too. Something comfortable enough to encourage conversation is advisable, but for drinks, I don’t like anything overly deep, wide or cushiony. Mostly because those three elements, coupled with the effects of a martini or three, can turn the before-dinner drinks into a snore-fest.
Each seat should be within reasonable reach of a surface on which a glass can rest. Consider nesting tables, small-footprint cocktail tables, or let a firm ottoman with a tray placed on top do the job.
A console with concealed storage that can hold small plates, napkins and glasses reduces running back and forth from the kitchen when snacks are involved (which should be almost always – let’s face it.)
This sleek teak piece from Artemano is beautifully-scaled, nodding to mid-century modern design, without looking kitsch. The low sheen finish is a nice compliment to the green-ey blues in the soft furnishings.
A watery-blue rug Weaver and Loom and soft furnishings from Artemano in blues and smokey grey makes this a calm, comfortable spot for drinks and chat. A faux green orb is threaded with tiny LED lights (HomeSense ). In another corner, a pot of fresh herbs from Lowe’s is added to a mix of conversation-starting objects. (Bonus – it makes the space smell nice!)
Interesting pieces from collections sparingly displayed can serve as both decor and conversation starters.
Here, a circa 1960 ashtray can be used for everything from serving dishes to holding delicate strings lights gathered in a swarm. They all live on a tiered shelf that functions both as a place to house drinks, books, and cocktail-making supplies, and a visual break between the cocktail area and the rest of the room.
I used supplied product to style this space. No sponsor reviewed or approved of the copy. Are the opinions all my own? You bet!
All photos by Dann Tardif.