My husband and I have been married for almost a year, and we’ve had this dark piece of furniture hanging around waiting to be transformed into our coffee bar. We have a small empty space of wall between our kitchen and our living room and we knew that that was the place where we wanted to set up a coffee bar. However, when we started looking for a small piece of furniture to redo, we couldn’t find anything that would fit the size. Everything was too wide . . . we kept looking on FB marketplace and Craigslist, but we still couldn’t find anything. Until one day, my husband was working and noticed this beautiful small-ish piece of furniture in his customer’s basement. He inquired about it and boom, the lady sold it to us! It couldn’t have been a more perfect fit for our little house 🙂
My house is mostly neutral with pops of navy here and there. Since our walls are the “Swiss Coffee” paint color, I knew I wanted the coffee bar to be something that would make a statement against the neutral colors. We got a few paint samples to see which we liked and we ended up using Behr Scuff Defense in the color “Very Navy”. This paint was such an easy paint to use! Better than any chalk paint I’ve used – we used a brush on the majority of it and it’s so forgiving. No brush strokes at all! And I love the matte look – I feel like it has that farmhouse chic look I was going for.
The first thing we did was add legs to it because we knew we wanted to raise it up more to a bar level. We used these legs from Home Depot – they had bolts in the top to use on a piece of furniture so we took those out.
We used some 3-inch construction screws to secure the legs to the bottom – four through the bottom of the coffee bar into the legs and two through the side trim piece into the legs. And you can see my husband put in a small piece of wood between the legs and the trim piece to fill in that empty spot. I’m glad we chose these taller 15″ legs so the coffee bar stands nice and tall.
Once all the legs were on, we started on the back piece. I love wainscoting so I knew that’s what I wanted for the back piece of the coffee bar! We have wainscoting in a couple other rooms of the house and in the basement and I love when everything goes together throughout the house.
We measured up how tall we wanted the finished coffee bar to be and then built the frame as pictured below, cutting the top and side pieces with a mitre saw so they would butt up together nicely. Also, we planned for the framing pieces to extend down back of the coffee bar so it would be as secure as it could be.
We attached the frame pieces to a 3/4″ piece of plywood (cut to the correct width and height) with 3″ construction screws, making sure the screws are in nice and snug so everything is sturdy.
After that back piece was been assembled, it was time to attach it to the coffee bar! Using the same size of screws we used previously, we screwed in the back piece to the base of the coffee bar – screwing it into the thickest parts of the base.
When the framing piece had been screwed on, we used an air nailer to attach the piece of wainscoting, as pictured below.
After that was securely fastened, we filled every crack and crevice with trim caulk. I’m so glad we didn’t skip this step – it makes the whole thing look so much cleaner and professional!
*Also, the corners of the trim on the bottom of the base had been chewed a bit by our pup, so we had to use some wood filler in those to smooth them out before we painted. We also filled in any holes that were there from when we had removed the handles and knobs. After the wood filler had dried completely, we sanded it down to make it smooth for painting.
My husband designed and made a shelf for the top but unfortunately, I didn’t get any pictures :-/ He used a trim piece and made the shelf exactly the size we wanted for the top! It turned out so great – originally, we had planned to use a floating shelf that we had gotten but it was an inch or so too small. And really, the custom shelf that Eli made turned out so. much. better. than the pre-made cheap-feeling shelf 🙂 Oh – we made and designed the shelf after we had gotten our brackets so we could make sure they fit up under the shelf nicely.
Next up was painting! I had been so excited for this step from the time we started this project haha.
As I said before, we used the Behr Ultra Scuff Defense – Stain-Blocking Paint & Primer. We used the shade “Very Navy” which turned out to be such a beautiful color for our coffee bar!
We ended up doing two full coats and then touching up some spots around the edge of the wainscoting – it needed a bit more since we were painting white wainscoting as opposed to the rest of the coffee bar that was darker. For the majority of the painting, we used a good-bristled brush for the small spots and edges and wainscoting, and a 6″ roller for the rest. As I said earlier, this paint is VERY forgiving and doesn’t show brush or roller marks. We taped off the top to leave it dark instead of painting it blue. One of my favorite things about this coffee bar is the matte finish. I think it really makes it look farmhouse-y and chic!
After we painted the coffee bar, we brought it inside and I applied a coat of Minwax Espresso stain to the top to give it a fresh new look. It really made a difference! I focused the stain on the edges and any other spots that had been a little marked up and scuffed up.
After the paint and stain were dry, we added our cup hooks. We ended up doing three on the bottom and two on the top so we could hang five mugs. The rest of our mugs I put down in the cupboard below.
We used these four brackets for the corners under the shelf and on the base of the coffee bar. I absolutely LOVE these brackets and I feel like they really make the whole piece, don’t you?
Before we attached the brackets, we sealed the wood top with some water-based polyurethane since there would be drinks and food on it. We used Varathane water-based crystal clear matte, but I can’t seem to find it anywhere online for some reason. This is the “satin finish” which would look great if you prefer that instead of matte!
Our drawer handle and door knobs are from Lowe’s. We went with a brushed nickel metal for our accents to match some of the stuff I have hanging on the kitchen wall near the coffee bar. Our brackets, cup hooks, drawer handle, and door knobs all match. I love it!
Here is the finished product! I’m so so so happy with the way it turned out and I’m so glad we finally got this project done! All the time we put into the little details made it all worth it 🙂
My basket under the coffee bar is from Ross – I use it to store some tea bags and hot chocolate packets. I always buy in bulk when it comes to tea and cocoa, so the leftovers get stashed away under the bar where no one can see them 😉
We have lots of storage space in the drawer and the cabinets below the coffee bar!
My “coffee” and “tea” canisters are from Target – I registered for those for my wedding and I love them so much! I have the “flour”, “sugar”, and “cookies” canisters too! Here are some really cute canisters that would look perfect in a farmhouse kitchen.
If you haven’t tried using an Aeropress yet, I highly recommend. It’s a great way to make a quick cup of coffee!
This is my kitchen gallery wall – see how nicely everything flows together with the wall decor and the coffee bar and my photo wall in the living room??? Makes me so happy 🙂
Some of our favorite coffee syrups are the Monin syrups – this coffee collection set would be perfect for a coffee bar! I personally love a simple vanilla or caramel syrup, and a splash of oat milk, in my afternoon coffee. We also like the Torani syrups, although we don’t have as many of those as we do of the Monin 😉
You’ll notice we have a lot of fruit-flavored syrups as well – we love Italian sodas (learn how to make them here). They’re a fun drink to have when people come over for dinner and I love having a ton of flavor options for guests.
If you love coffee, you should try this latte!
Remember the whipped coffee craze that was going around last year or the year before?? Well, the Greeks had something going a long time before that! This Greek frappe is so good and incredibly easy to make at home 🙂