3 ways to light a bar cart

November 30, 2017


During a recent transition to mid-century modern in our dining room, I purchased a beautiful, brass bar cart from West Elm.

Here’s a photo courtesy of the West Elm website and a link to the cart. The clean simple lines make a lovely addition to our dining room and would work well in a living room or oversized bath holding spa products.



Naturally, we’ve turned this cart into a lighting project.  We’ve lit this cart 3 ways


  • Bar cart
  • Accessories
    • a brass “cheers” accent word (is that what these are called?)
    • decanter
    • crystal highball glasses
    • wooden tray
    • marble coasters
    • bar accessory set
    • a few bottles of wine and maybe a good bottle of scotch
  • Christmas floral accents
  • Battery lights
  • A vase
  • Fake snow


We’ve assembled our accessories and it looks great but in our humble opinion it needs lights!



Add Christmas to the cart

This arrangement uses a set of pure white battery LED lights with an M5 shape.

The floral accents were easy finds at a local craft store.  We combined a “pine branch” that was flocked and accented with a pine cone and a simple metallic fake twig that really picks up the light nicely.

Install 3 fresh AA batteries.  Turn them on.  Lay them down on the mirrored upper level.  Add the Christmas decor.  Just tuck the combo in between the tray holding the decanter and the bar accessories rack.

Look #1.  Christmas ready. Make a cocktail to celebrate.

(We liked this so much we took more than one photo.)






Add a snow vase

We show step by step instructions on making a snow vase over here.

The snow vase project takes 5 minutes to assemble. Finding the fake snow in Walmart or Target takes longer than putting the project together. So, go shopping, read the blog, make the snow vase and come back here.

Not time to celebrate yet.

Turn on fairy battery lights by flipping the switch on the battery box hidden in your vase. Add vase to bar cart. Sprinkle a little faux snow around.

Look #2. Your bar cart is winter-ready. Time to throw a dinner party.  (Have a cocktail to celebrate.)




Gratuitous fuzzy, romantic photo.



Add a string of lights (right before the guests arrive)

The easiest of the three ways to light the bar cart, this was the 14-year old boy’s favorite and the one we left in place.

The only materials required are a single strand of battery lights. We like this version with no insulation and super-thin wires. We grabbed yellow to pick up the color of the wooden tray and the cart. See them here.



Install new batteries. Wind the lights around the decanter and artfully staged glasses. Hide the battery box in a corner.  Turn the light on.

Look #3.  Ready for a New Year’s Eve party or for Tuesday dinner with the family.  (Have a cocktail to celebrate. Put those bar tools to good use.)





Show us how you light your bar cart.

Or book shelf.

Or dorm room.

All these ideas work great in those locations as well.

Instagram #christmaslightsource

Facebook:  Share directly to our feed!  @christmaslightsource

Aside from throwing dinner parties that feature at least two kinds of cheese dip, Shellie's passions include travel, Mid-Century Modern furnishings and finding the perfect street taco. Has been known to snort laugh champagne.

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