5 Forgotten Bar Cart Essentials Every Bar Cart Must Have!

I was happy for another opportunity to create a style board for Chairish. My last board featured Chairish bar stools in a sleek vintage chic home bar setting… more on that here. This time it’s all about the essentials every bar cart owner must have! Well now, this is definitely a style board that makes me feel right at home.

Chairish provided these six bar carts to choose from, but definitely check out their bar cart section to see the full suite of options!

Brass Bar Carts

I opted to feature this 1940s solid brass beauty:

Sheila Zeller Interiors - Brass Bar Cart

I love the simplicity of this piece, it’s sleek lines and elegant oval shape. I am a weak-kneed fan of classic Hollywood glam, and just know this bar cart is dying to showcase some glamorous barware, sparkle and shine!

Instead of featuring typical barware basics for bar carts, I decided to highlight five essentials that are often overlooked. That’s right. These five little essentials can take your bar cart from ‘doing it right’ to down right cool-worthy (underscore)!

The 5 Forgotten Bar Cart Essentials

Here’s why and where you can shop to grab ’em quick:

1. Decanter Tags

Chalkboard Hang Tags - Sur La Table

I think you need at least one decanter if not three, to set the tone. They are showy and useful, but it sure helps to know what’s inside! Engraved silver decanter tags are super stunning and on my list of favourites for sure, but I’m all over these chalkboard labels. They let you change things up easy-peasy, and it doesn’t hurt that they are sleek in black but still keep things fun and light.

2. Cocktail Napkins

Georges Briard Cocktail Napkins - Poolhaus Vintage (Etsy)

Nothing serves a classic cocktail in a classic vintage coupe better than a beautiful napkin. We’re used to so many awesome paper choices, but why not go green on this? These vintage napkins are pure linen and designed by Mid Century great, Georges Briard. You know who Georges Briard is right?

3. Coasters

Black Lacquer Coasters - Chairish

No, not just any coasters! This brass bar cart is screaming for a touch of classic Hollywood Glam, and we have that in spades with these vintage black and gold lacquer coasters. And why coasters anyway? Well, they’re great for the stemless cocktail glasses, and they add a touch of cachet!

4. Cocktail Picks

BAR-4383 Cocktail Swords, Toledo (1)

If you’re going to serve a classic martini then you’ll need skewers for the 3 olives please! Actually, you will garnish many-a-cocktail and will be glad to have a swanky set of cocktail picks, or in this case vintage Toledo swords. Throw out the wooden toothpicks. There’s no place for them here!

5. Bottle Opener

Brass Crab Bottle Opener - Chairish

Your bar cart is a statement piece and it’s meant to pop. Well, that’s exactly what this brass crab will do. Who knew this shiny crustacean was actually a bottle opener in disguise?

You can go in many directions with your bar cart, there are just so many options and styles. But if you’re going with a brass bar cart like this you will want to stock up on glam barware basics, add a garnish and some splash with these forgotten essentials of the bar cart mix!
Bar Carts - 5 Forgotten Essentials
 And so… what’s next on your bar cart essential list? These Georges Briard cocktail napkins are definitely on mine! Update: I couldn’t resist!! Wanna see… click here!
 Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs for Chairish pieces taken from Chairish.com – click on product images for direct link to each source. Please link and credit if you choose to use!

Working With What You Have: Improvising a Pop-Up Booth Display

The Victoria Vintage Expo has come and gone for Audrey Would! , and I promised to share how our display island was created by working with pieces we already had – my favourite way to go! It was simple, seriously, but that’s often the case. Sometimes the hardest part is the vision.

This year the island display was created with these on-hand pieces:

  • 1 fold up TV table
  • 3 floor-standing vases
  • 4 ceramic tiles
  • Museum Putty
  • Tablecloths

Prop Collage - Display Stand

These items were chosen because of their varying heights. Displaying pieces at different levels helps them stand out, and for a display island it creates visual interest as a grouping.

Display DIY (2)

I bet you can guess where I’m going with the tiles!

Display DIY (6)

Because there was carpet in the booth space, also I placed one of the smaller tiles under the large vase for stability, and then used Museum Putty to secure the display-top tiles into place.

Prop Collage - Display Stand (2)

Have you ever used this putty? It’s really amazing, and what you see in the middle image is all you need, trust me. Once pressed into place, the tiles weren’t going anywhere!

I actually decided to flip the smaller vases over for better stability. With the tapered profile they were just a little too vulnerable to teetering if bumped, and because they are so much smaller than the large vase, I did not set them on tiles.

Display DIY (5)

With the tiles pushed snuggly together this part of the set up was a lot more stabilized.

Display DIY (7)

Tablecloths were used to pull it all together.

Tablecloths

The plain black one was draped to the floor not only to hide the table legs, but to also visually blend the gaps between the props and create a unified presentation.

Display DIY (8)

The white tablecloth is a handmade vintage piece I picked up last year. I love the simple elegance of the candlewicking  and thought it was the perfect finishing touch to give the display some pop.

If you followed Audrey Would! leading up to the Vintage Expo then you might remember these Gifts to Go

Gifts to Go

They served a dual purpose. Vintage stemware was gift-boxed for sale, and these gift boxes became part of the display.

You can see how simple creating this island display was. It came down to improvising with things I already had on hand, but using them in a new way.

What do you think? Did it work?

Audrey Would Expo2015 - Gifts to Go Display

To see the full booth presentation, pop over to our blog at Audrey Would! If you are interested in a Gift-to-Go, they are available in our Stemware Collection at Audrey Would!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs taken by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!

 

Victoria Vintage Expo – Vancouver Island’s Hottest Vintage Event!

If you follow along then you know I’m planning and prepping Audrey Would!’s booth for the HOTTEST vintage event on Vancouver Island! You will find us at the Victoria Vintage Expo on Friday and Saturday, September 25-26. So excited!!

Victoria Vintage Expo 2015 Banner 976x380

This is the third year for the event, and we’re thrilled that it is also Audrey’s third year to participate. If you missed out last year, you can catch my wrap-up post here. Just a little taste of what to expect from Audrey Would!, top of the stairs in Booth #38! (Floor map of Booth locations here)

Find full EXPO details and more on Audrey Would! here.

Thanks for stopping by, can’t wait to see you there!

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Our Move… Soaking up New Moments One Sweet Spot at a Time!

We have so many new moments to soak up and enjoy… and we’re doing the best we can!

Umbrella-Deck View

In just a little over a week we have enjoyed taking in so many new delights, and are completely smitten with our new neighbourhood.

Secret Garden - Phyllis Street

We love its small town style, the casual energy and laid back pace.

Dahlia Bouquets

We are especially delighted with the local grocery store. Pepper’s Grocery is its name, established in 1962. Their selection of locally grown, locally made is crazy stellar – so much packed in a very small space, and quality at every turn.

Peppers Collage

You can one-stop-shop here from the deli to the bakery to the floral selections, and of course, fresh seafood, dairy and meats.

Fresh Flowers

I just learned that Pepper’s has been the Gold Medal Winner for Best Grocery Store in BC & in Canada 2 years in a row. Wow!!

We’ve enjoyed Smuggler’s Cove Pub – it was our saviour for dinner the first few nights after our move.

Smuggler's Cove Pub

The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly, and the food a tasty mix of modern and classic pub.

By now you know about our love of classic cocktails and our martini Fridays…

Martini

So you can imagine how happy my Mr. was to see Smuggler’s Cove Liquor Store standing out in the middle of Cadboro Bay Village. Not only does it have a selection of great stuff, but they will order in anything you like! Lord help our liquor budget.

Smuggler's Cove Liquor Store

On Friday nights roasted peanuts go hand-in-hand with our martini. They’re even served up in this vintage peanut dispenser guy. He’s a 1950s Nuss Wal Mid-Century piece from Germany, and he makes me smile every. single. time. 🙂  Love him!

Peanut Guy

So, we picked up our Friday night peanuts from For Good Measure where this little store stocked with premium bulk foods actually fresh-roasts their peanuts right on site!

For Good Measure Collage

Oh my, oh my, Friday nights!

The feeling of community and sense of trust is evident when you look around. Like the honour system of this little stand that catches my eye every time we drive by. It’s so cute and the fresh dahlias seem to sell out fast!

Honor Flower Stand

There are little stands tucked here and there as you go, and it’s such a great feeling to be immersed in this slower pace when you know the pulse of the city is barely 12 minutes away!

Phyllis Street Stand

Heart Pharmacy is where I will be mailing Audrey Would! parcels, and in fact just sent out Audrey’s first order from here!

Heart Pharmacy Collage

It actually made me feel happy emotional to be shipping an order this soon after the move, especially since this item was temporarily missing-in-action at the time! You see, all Audrey’s wares, with the help of my good friend Christine MacDonald, are carefully wrapped and packed in itemized boxes for the moment… 50 boxes, 50 full boxes stacked high and deep. And somehow I missed itemizing a few things like this piece.

Tantalus Decanter Caddy

It was eventually located in the 47th box on the second thorough search. So much for being organized and best laid plans!

We have tons to explore, so many new things to see and do… and we can’t wait, but right now we’re still unpacking and finding places to put things in this ‘new’ vintage home.

Painted Rocks

How about you? What do you love about where you live?

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!

 

 

 

A Vintage Home With A Vintage View!

I thought now would be a good time to take a small pause and share our news.

Soon we will be moving to a vintage home with a vintage view!

Mount Baker View

The story behind this area is fun and fascinating. It involves rum runners between here and the US during the prohibition years, a look out point, a cove that housed a dynamite factory in the late 19th century… and now a beautiful rural-feeling area shrouded in trees with the heart of the City just a stone’s throw away. The streets are quiet and narrow, more like a lane, and only lit by 2 lamp posts the entire way!

Welcome to where we will soon call home.

Welcome Home

We knew in an instant it was calling our name.

There are many original features still in place…

Living Room

We love the hardwood, the old heat-vent grate, the cove ceiling corners tucked here and there, and the addition of this stand-up bar in a Mid-Century way!

Dining Room

We will have two decks to enjoy, one up that gets full sun and takes in the view, and this lower one that steps out to the private back yard and is more shaded for the hot summer days.

Back Yard

We will have new neighbours, and some we didn’t expect to meet… the kind that borrow your yard to eat!

Neighbourly Pets

Life has its way of making changes come along. We are sad to be leaving our current community and all that it has brought to our life, but we are grateful that we will only be a short drive away.

We look forward to carrying on with our Saturday Cocktails by Clemens served in Audrey Would! wares, sitting up to the MCM bar and being immersed in our ‘new’ character laden vintage setting.

Bamboo Cocktail by Clemens

If you have noticed fewer posts here or fewer new listings over at Audrey Would!, just know that right now we are neck-deep in purging and packing, and sorting our things… and prepping for our July 4th garage sale – 6283 Selkirk Terrace, Duncan – 9:30 to 2:00…ish! Yes, there will be 2 sweet, need-to-be-restored Mid-Century dressers in the mix that I ran out of time to fix!

Though we are moving it is not goodbye, it is another step in the journey…

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller. Please link and credit if you choose to use!

Vintage Tantalus Sets: Keep Your Spirits Under Lock & Key!

Tantalus. What in the world is that?

The tantalus is a late-19th century introduction to keeping your liquor under lock and key. Liquor stored in decanter bottles was kept safe by the locking tantalus frame that held decanter bottles inside. The frame was designed in such a way that while it was an open caddy for displaying elegant decanters, it also locked so the decanters and their stoppers could not be removed without the key!

http://www.audreywould.com/collections/all/products/vintage-brass-tantalus-rye-scotch-locking-decanter-caddy

Did you know that until the licensing act of 1860, spirits and wines were not sold in their own bottle? No, they were sold straight from the barrel, which meant if you wanted to buy alcohol, you also needed to take along a container to be filled. Until the first decanter was produced in the 1690s, a claret jug was typically used.

The first patented tantalus was in 1881 by George Betjemann, a cabinet maker from the Netherlands. However, the first tantalus prototype was introduced in Stourbridge in 1860 and was made of wood. There are differences of opinion as to why the tantalus was ever made, but the fun version is they were designed to protect the bottled goodness from the servants sneaking a few sips! As a result you will also hear a tantalus referred to as ‘The Butler’s Enemy’!

The tantalus solved two problems. With an increasing consumption of spirits in the home, it was one way to keep the alcohol from being pilfered, and at the same time allowed the showy decanters to remain on display, an important consideration for the Joneses of the day!

You will find a range of tantalus options and designs for holding 2 decanters, 3 decanters and sometimes even 4.

Vintage-Tantalus-Sets-1950s-Audrey-Would (2)

You will also discover the tantalus design was adapted to accommodate other things: cigar boxes, fountain pens, perfume bottles and even tea in tins!

Let’s take a peek at a few options you might have seen at Audrey Would!

Vintage-Tantalus-Sets-1950s-Audrey-Would (3)

Both are from the 1950s and are complete with lock and key. Our 2-decanter tantalus is quite unique with a wind up musical feature that plays, ‘How Dry Am I’ when one or both bottles are removed! How much fun is that?

If you are looking for a unique gift for Dad with historical roots, we think a tantalus is a great way to go!

If you want to learn more about the history of the tantalus… and there is a lot more to learn about in just the name itself… we recommend these two articles:

Once you read them, you decide. Was the tantalus designed to keep the servants from pilfering, or was it simply a novelty item meant to be enjoyed by the rising affluent middle class of the time?

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller for Audrey Would! Please link and credit if you choose to use.

Vintage Barware Gifts for Dad

Father’s Day is coming, and that means it’s gift time for Dad! At Audrey Would! we’ve got you covered.

If you’re looking for unique Mid-Century barware options, we have them.

Fathers Day Gifts, Vintage Barware, Mid Century Modern Cocktail Gifts

If you want classic cocktail style, we have that. If you need something a little more rustic we carry rustic options with a sleek edge. And if Dad is more the Gatsby type, you will find crystal decanters and coupes with a flair!

If the barbeque is Dad’s thing, well we have an assortment of serving trays, carving sets and Glo-Hill steak knives to accompany Dad’s culinary confections hot off the smokin’ grill!

Glo-Hill Steak Knives, Vintage Cutlery, Mid-Century Modern Flatware

 

At Audrey Would! we have beer glassessports options, nautical pieces, whiskey sets and more. You still have time to gift for Dad. Why not pop by for a quick look? If you don’t see what you have in mind, please contact us. We work hard to accommodate!

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photo collages by Sheila Zeller for Audrey Would! Please link and credit if you choose to use.

Vintage Lenox Coupes… So Pretty!

My friend has a very keen eye and when she saw these gorgeous vintage Lenox cocktail coupes, well, she thought of AudreyWould! Can you see why?

Lenox-Cocktail-Coupes-Audrey-Would-Vintage-Home (1)

Lenox is an American company and among the best of the best. It is one of the world’s oldest and most respected names in fine china tableware, crystal and gifts. You will find Lenox pieces displayed in museums with many awards attached to its name, and a preferred choice by presidents over the years. Lenox is the couture of table dressing in homes across America and throughout the world!

This particular coupe features a beautifully shaped bowl with a delicate flare to its gold rim. If you flip the coupe over you will find it signed, ‘Lenox USA’ with their logo acid etched into the base.

Lenox-Cocktail-Coupes-Audrey-Would-Vintage-Home (9)

The detailed stem is octagon cut with sharp, vertical flutes stretching full length.

Lenox-Cocktail-Coupes-Audrey-Would-Vintage-Home (3)

Notice the stem detail at the top where it meets the coupe bowl, and how it is rounded where it meets the base.

Lenox-Cocktail-Coupes-Audrey-Would-Vintage-Home (5)

The stem is crafted like a very simplified Ionic column, with only partial scrolls atop the 8 flutes.

Lenox-Cocktail-Coupes-Audrey-Would-Vintage-Home (4)

Did you know there are three column styles, the Doric, Ionic and Corinthian? Once you are familiar with them, you will begin to see similarities in the endless variations of stemware stems. It’s actually kind of fun!

If you look closely at the reflection of the coupe bowl you can see how pretty the top of the stem-work is. *If you’re reading this on your phone, seriously, you need to enlarge your pic in order to appreciate!*

Lenox-Cocktail-Coupes-Audrey-Would-Vintage-Home (2)

This upside-down perspective really showcases the fine attention to detail in the quality craftsmanship of the stem’s finish.

These coupe bowls are also larger in size. Here you see the Corpse Reviver #2 cocktail in a single cocktail pour.

Lenox-Cocktail-Coupes-Audrey-Would-Vintage-Home (7)

This classic cocktail fills just half the coupe, and that’s before there’s even been one sip!

We are a fan of the larger bowl, because it makes these coupes very adaptable. Picture them standing in for a decadent dessert dish!

Lenox Crystal Cocktail Coupes, Gold Rims, Set of 6 - Audrey Would Vintage Home

With special thanks to my keen-eyed friend we are pleased that Audrey Would! now happens to have these Lenox coupes in a set of 6! If you are interested, please contact me for more details. 🙂

Thanks for stopping by!

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Photographs by Sheila Zeller for Audrey Would! Please link and credit if you choose to use.

Party Punch. What’s So Special About That?

As the weather warms and the heart of wedding season looms there’s one constant connector between the two. And that’s the appearance of punch at the party! Now we all know there’s a range in punch from the non-alcohol to the spiked imbibing with a kick!

We think this Art Deco punch bowl and these vintage coupes from Audrey Would! are the perfect party punch mix!

A 1940s vintage punch bowl in pretty purple. Made of blown glass and perfect for a special gathering of friends!

But did you know…

Punch pre-dates the cocktail? Why yes, it’s true! And in fact it’s so true that it goes back three centuries prior to the cocktail debut! Punch was first created in the 16th Century by British Soldiers stationed in India, while the first evidence of a cocktail albeit sans alcohol made its entrance in the early 19th Century. Who knew?

What’s so special about punch? I mean, we all grew up with it and have seen it at different occasions and gatherings, and with almost any combination of ingredients you can imagine.

This vintage Indiana Glass punch set from Audrey Would! has lived through one or two!

A vintage punch set with modern lines, perfect for today's lifestyle!

Well… here’s what’s really going on in that bowl.

Punch (and I am now referring to spiked punch) is all about communal drinking and fun! It’s about sharing the same drink with your friends, and if you’re the host it’s like a one-stop-shop. You basically mix one drink large enough to hydrate more than just a few, and then you get to join the party too!

This special edition punch set from Audrey Would! has got that all squared away. It comes with 16 cups!

A special edition Mid Century punch set , 'Golden Anniversary' by Champion.

So what’s really going on in that bowl?

Punch is more than just pouring a bunch of ingredients into a bowl and giving it a stir. In fact, that’s exactly what not to do! Here are the classic punch take-aways for the ‘right’ things to do.

  • Classic punch always contains 5 elements: spirits, sugar, citrus, water and spice. Did you know tea can be considered a spice? See how it’s used in the recipe at the end!
  • Punch is always stirred, but not the way you think. There are two ways to stir punch,
    • Over ice in a pitcher, but never in the punch bowl
    • Poured back and forth between two pitchers with ice (this is called rolling)
    • And then… you strain the punch into the bowl leaving the ice behind

Whaat? No ice??

  • Punch is served over a large block of ice rather than immersed with cubes.
    • This keeps the punch cold, but slows down dilution
    • And this is where the ice ring can substitute for the block of ice
  • Club Soda or sparkling wine are used for effervescence in punch.
    • That’s just what you do!
  • Definitely do add edible garnishes in the punch bowl.
    • They are the floating touch to your punchy presentation
    • And, guests can add to their drinks as they choose

But most importantly…

  • Pay tribute to the punch!
    • That’s right, serve your punch in a vintage bowl. That’s called serving it right, and at Audrey Would! we just happen to have a few. 😉

To wrap all this up, we recommend you try Death & Co’s recipe for classic Mother’s Ruin Punch. The name says it all, doesn’t it?

Cheers to fun with friends! Do you have any punch tips, vintage bowls or recipes to share?

Thanks for stopping by!

Audrey Would Vintage Home

Photographs by Sheila Zeller for Audrey Would. Please link and credit if you choose to use!