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How to Turn a Closet into a Home Bar (Also Known as Best Idea Ever)

Whether it's converting a closet into a cozy reading nook, a kid's workstation, or in this case, a chic bar, Stephanie Woodmansee and Elle Clymer of Henry & Co Design love to create intimate, unique spaces that speak to their clients' needs. Check out how they transformed a client's home office into more than just a place to check emails.
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Image courtesy of Henry & Co Design, LLC

Every square foot counts when you have a small space to work with. Whether it's converting a closet into a cozy reading nook, a kid's workstation, or in this case, a home bar, we love to repurpose forgotten corners or closets and make them the focal point of the room.


Our client's home office needed a full makeover. The original mother-in-law quarters of this turn-of-the-century historic estate needed personality on every level. The room was in less than ideal condition and had not been touched in several decades. After tearing out the pink shag carpeting, removing the bifold closet doors, and adding crown molding, we were ready to get started.


With the idea of using the office as more than just a place for paying bills and email correspondence, we embraced our client's love of entertaining and need for a personal retreat. The walls were treated in a deep cerulean grasscloth and we used a Farrow & Ball light gray in an estate emulsion finish (color: Dimpse) on all the trim to add richness and depth. We combined luxurious textiles with an assortment of one-of-a-kind pieces to create an eclectic and classic space with the home bar being the showstopper in the room.

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Schematic design board courtesy of Henry & Co Design, LLC

We worked closely with a contractor to transform the 21-by-48-inch reach-in closet. Keeping our budget in mind, we offset the custom John Robshaw Indian pear print fabric wall covering with a prefab unfinished bathroom vanity that we sourced online and paint-grade wood shelves from the hardware store. These budget-friendly elements acted as our "custom millwork." The Carrera marble countertop was a remnant that we had left over from a recent kitchen renovation. We added the detailed Ogee countertop edge, and painted the vanity in the Farrow & Ball full-gloss paint in color Plummet, which continued the custom look. The unlacquered brass pulls were the final touch, bringing in a warmth and soft glow to the piece.


And this is how the look came together!

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Photo courtesy of Victor Harshbarger Photography

Rather than installing a recessed light to illuminate the space, we wanted to create an ambient glow. Honing in on the global style of our client, the Osgood pendant from Arteriors was a perfect fit. We love how it distributes the light, creating the jewel-box effect we were looking for.


Last but not least, we added vintage glasses and heirloom barware in various heights, mixed with favorite artwork and personal accessories to give a layered effect on the shelves. A large shagreen tray on top displays the liquor bottles, and the small arrangement of ranunculus softens the space.

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Photo courtesy of Nick Johnson Photography

The result is a chic and sophisticated space, ready for entertaining.


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