How To Build A Garden Bar [Simple Guide]

Most garden bars resemble an outdoor garden shed where you can enjoy drinks with friends. You can make it as simple or as fancy as you want depending on your needs and budget.

Putting up a garden bar is easy enough for any DIYer with the right tools but it takes time and proper planning.

Decide how big you want it to be, how many people you want it to serve and the overall feel and look.

What tools you’ll need?

Have your power tools ready including a cordless drill and a mitre saw.

You’ll also need a nail gun or hammer, a hand saw or bow saw to cut larger pieces that won’t fit under the mitre saw and a measuring tape.

Don’t forget to buy screws and nails, hinges for the counter or door and wood stain if you’d like a particular finish. Of course, you also need timber.

Use a Plan

I highly recommend working off a plan rather than trying to wing it as you go. There are plenty of downloadable plans online with specifics on measurements, materials and design.

Look for one that close to what you want and print it.

This will make it so much easier to build something neat and secure. It’ll also save you mistakes and time.

How to build a garden bar

Here are some general steps for building a shed-style garden bar.

1. Measure

Measure the area you want the bar to occupy. Get dimensions for the core bar area as well as the decking at the front or on the sides.

You should leave adequate space around the bar for easy access and movement.

2. Set up the base

Start with the base or foundation of the bar. This consists of an outer frame with several inner joists.

Prepare the main outer frame to the right size then add the inner joists within the frame. They should be spaced evenly and level (check with a spirit level).

When you finish, check that the entire base is level.

3. Lay the floor/deck

Secure pressure treated boards on top of the base. This will be the bar’s floor or decking.

If you are planning to have outdoor decking, it will extend beyond the wall on the side with the deck.

Consider staining the floor to give it a beautiful deep colour and to protect it from UV and moisture damage.

4. Build the wall frames

Build 2 wall frames to your preferred bar height. Remember to make the rear frame a bit higher to ensure a slanted roof.

Secure the frame corners using brackets and attach the frames to the floor using 3” deck screws.

To complete the framing, attach the two frames at the top with a couple of 2 by 4s.

What’s remaining now for the main structure to be complete is the roofing and the siding.

5. Roofing

The roofing part starts with building rafters on top of the wall frames.

The rafters should slant from the back wall towards the front wall. Cut a right angle notch at the end of each rafter to rest it into the front wall frame.

Finish by laying your preferred roof. Options include felt, corrugated iron sheets, rubber, tin or roof shingles.

6. Siding

There are plenty of options when it comes to siding including vinyl, cedar shingles, wood boards, metal and stucco.

Depending on your bar design and plan, the siding will probably not go all the way to the roof on all sides. It can be half height all round or open only on one side.

Remember to leave space for a door. You can also use a hinged counter as the entryway.

7. Interior fixtures and final touches

Finish off by putting in the counter top, shelving for the drinks and whatever else you find necessary.

Feel free to add decorative touches to give the bar a personal touch.

Other designs

Don’t feel restricted by this style of a garden bar. Your bar doesn’t even have to look like a shed.

It can be a simple outdoor rack or shelf that can hold a good number of drinks and glasses. Add some wheels and you can set up your garden bar wherever you want.

Another idea is a cabinet-style garden bar. Design it like a kitchen cabinet complete with a rusting wooden counter top.

It provides plenty of storage for drinks, ice and glasses. You can even fit an ice maker or an ice box in there.

Set it up on one corner of the garden or add some wheels for mobility.

Research some design ideas online and choose the one that works best for you. Here is a nice video that will give you further ideas on how to build a garden bar.

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