DIY Wedding Cocktail Bar: How To Plan It

diy wedding cocktail bar main image
Photo by


A bar is an important part of the wedding reception and there are lots of options to choose. It is depending on the type of wedding you’re having. Some couples consider a cash bar or open bar, wine bar, or casual beer bar. However, if you’re looking for something a bit more atypical. You could go with a DIY cocktail bar for your wedding. If this interests you, then get some tips on a DIY wedding cocktail bar: how to plan it.


Frequently Asked Questions

What supplies are needed for a DIY bar at a wedding?

Certain basic supplies are needed for a DIY wedding bar. This includes ice buckets, an ice scoop, ice, bottle openers and wine keys, stirrers, shakers, garnishes, and several bar rags.

How to create a signature cocktail for your wedding?

A signature cocktail is often a statement piece at a wedding, adding a bit of shine to the bar menu. Often a favorite drink of the couple, it can complement the wedding theme and add some fun to the festivities. To create the signature cocktail. It’s important to choose the profile of the drink if it’s to be bitter, sweet, or sour. Then choose the spirit along with other necessary ingredients.


Set Up Wedding Drink Menu

The great thing about a DIY cocktail bar for a wedding is that you wouldn’t need to serve the common and typical drink options. With a DIY bar, there is the opportunity to create a lot of original and fun drinks. Create a menu that would suit your guests. When creating the menu, it is important to stock beverages that align with your theme, and also options you’re sure your guests and your budget, will love.

Some trendy, tasty, and even affordable options include liquors such as whiskey, vodka, gin, tequila, and rum. Wine, beer, club soda, soft drinks, basic garnishes such as cherries, limes, and lemons; syrup mixers, and anything else you’d like to add to make the classic cocktails or more.


Take some time to visit local breweries or wineries that make craft beer or wine. They often have more interesting, less generic drink options that would be at home at a DIY wedding bar.

Something as artsy and as unconventional as a DIY wedding bar should have a menu that fits. So, it’s important to choose a design that complements your wedding theme as well as the overall ambiance you are trying to create.


Calculate How Much Alcohol is Needed For A Wedding

When planning for a DIY cocktail bar at a wedding, it can be challenging to determine how much alcohol is actually needed. The general rule of thumb that often works is two drinks for each guest per hour. With this calculation, while some people would drink more and others less, you can be sure that your guests would be satisfied. At the same time, you wouldn’t have much leftover alcohol at the end of the day, so no wastage.

To help with the calculation, keep these numbers in mind. A 750ml bottle of liquor equals 15 double measures, and a 750ml bottle of wine equals 5 glasses. One 750ml bottle of fizz equals 6 flutes, and a 15.5-gallon keg of beer equals 124 pints.


Keep sufficient stock of basic garnishes – cherries, berries, lime, lemon, coriander, fresh chilies, and mint. Garnishes can be added to anything from water to cocktails, fizz, soft drinks, and spirits.
Order non-alcoholic options for those guests with other preferences. You can have colas, sparkling water, tea, lemonades, and a variety of fruit cordials to mix them with.


Decorate A DIY Wedding Cocktail Bar

The bar is the most popular place at any wedding reception and where guests will spend most of their time. So, give your nearest and dearest the time of their lives with a beautifully decorated bar that complements your wedding theme and is part of the overall aesthetic. While a lot of weddings stick to a generic style, yours doesn’t have to be the same. Especially with something as atypical as a DIY bar, you could go with your own style preferences.

You could add some personality and flair to anything from the DIY cocktail bar wedding reception signs, to including décor pieces such as unique floral arrangements, fairy lights, overhead suspending balloons, chalkboard signage, illuminating the bar for that extra lush feel, and more.


If you have a floral or garden theme, you could elevate the bar aesthetic by adorning the drink storage, such as mini tubs, ice containers, or buckets with flowers. Illuminating the bar is always a great idea. This will add some flair and sophistication to it, plus guests wouldn’t miss it. So, neon signs and light bulbs to light up the spot would be perfect.


DIY Wedding Cocktail Bar Ideas

Wedding Champagne Tower

A wedding champagne tower can be a focal piece at a wedding reception that also doubles as décor. This would be a sure way of creating a memorable day for your guests and can be done during cocktail hour or during the main wedding reception. This extravagant way of serving bubbly is a spectacle and experience that everyone is sure to enjoy. For an idea of how much champagne you would need to pour from the top glass until all the glasses are filled, keep in mind that one bottle of champagne would fill 5 glasses.


Wedding Drinks Wall

A wedding drinks wall is a wall installation at a wedding event that holds glasses of wine, champagne, or other beverages, making it easy for guests to grab and drink during the festivities. This is a kind of drink station that also doubles as décor as it adds to the ambiance of the event. Each drink wall can be decorated to suit every type of wedding from classic to vintage, minimalist or rustic, with colorful backdrops, floral arrangements, or art displays.

Wooden DIY Wedding Cocktail Bar

A wooden DIY bar is a great idea for a rustic or bohemian wedding, country wedding, garden soiree, or other. This casual, creative take on the traditional wedding bar can be made from stacking palettes for a wooden palette bar. Or the combination of a picnic table and wooden ladder for a unique farm wedding bar. Beer or wine barrels can also make a great statement for outdoor weddings. The drinks can be put in barrels with several taps for quick and easy self-service.


Hire Glassware

Weddings often require a great amount of glassware, especially for drinks. If you’re having a large number of guests, you might want to consider hiring said glassware to make things easier and more affordable.
You’ll need several types of glassware, three to four types at the minimum. These would include, shot glasses, wine glasses, tumblers or highballs for soft drinks, pint glasses for beer, coupes or flutes for the bubbly, and cocktail glasses.


To simplify the process and avoid cleanup or next-day transport, be sure to hire glassware from a company that collects the unwashed glasses direct from the venue after the event.


Elevate your wedding from a generic and traditional event to a unique one with a DIY cocktail wedding bar. With unique serving stations that can even double as décor, you can personalize your bar to fit any type of wedding, from beachy to rustic, casual, or classic. Using this guide on DIY wedding cocktail bar: how to plan it, you can’t go wrong.