We’ve been talking for awhile about turning our basement into a Mad Men-esque retro bar complete with classy barware and vintage decor. Ever since I saw those gorgeous vintage bar stools on One Kings Lane awhile back, I’ve had my eye out for pieces that would work in this vintage-style bar of my dreams.
Here’s a fun little round up of starting points for building a retro bar and bringing a little Mad Men into your real life (minus the sexism).
No retro rec room or mid-century modern mancave is complete without at least one kitschy vintage tin sign. I’m partial to this twilight lounge sign or this cute red arrow that says “ice cold beer sold here.” You’ll also want some sort of retro wall clock or neon sign. The RCA wall clock pictured above is a cute one. (p.s. I found a 10% off promo code for Retro Planet – use code RPAB10TY.)
To continue the red, black and chrome theme, you might pick up a retro chrome dinette set like this one or this sweet red and white vintage-style bar. I also like this more understated black and silver one. You’ll need a couple of old-fashioned bar stools like these red and chrome ones or these black and chrome bar stools that have a back. (p.s. I found a promo code for 15% off those barstools + free shipping – use code BARSTOOL15 on orders over $349 – ends 12/31/12.)
Once you have your classy bar set up, you’ll need some classy retro barware to go with it. I love this vintage-y glass carafe for water or wine, this gorgeous, vintage gold and glass cocktail set and this beautiful green and yellow bohemian decanter and glasses.
For wine, you’ll also want a beautiful antique-style wine opener / uncorking machine and a classic decanter, and for cocktails you’ll need a vintage ice bucket like this one. If beer is more your scene, these vintage-looking pilsner glasses are where it’s at. I also love this beautifully textured whiskey decanter and glass set and these simple, classic martini glasses. And don’t forget the cocktail shaker – I love this classy one (here’s a less expensive version).
For a more casual, family-friendly look, you could get a retro glass straw dispenser and this adorable “tap is terrific” water bottle. You should also get these adorable retro milk bottles and these old-fashioned milk glasses (or maybe I just should). These 50s-reminiscent Collins glasses would work equally well for a Tom Collins or a Shirley Temple.
Another nice touch would be a vintage style lamp for mood lighting. And if you really want to get crazy, you could add this amazing retro microwave (where was this when I was looking for one last year?).
And of course, what retro bar is complete without some retro cocktails to go with it? This vintage cocktail recipe book is a nice starting point as is this one. This cocktail book is actually from 1947 so you know the drinks are authentic. If you’d like retro recipes to serve with your cocktails, The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook looks like a good bet (there’s a recipe for pineapple upside-down cake!).