Real Costs: An old wet bar becomes a Farmhouse style coffee nook for $250

DIYer Dori Turner transformed a dated wet bar into a dreamy coffee nook for less than $250. This is how.

Wet room come coffee nook before and after shot
(Image credit: Dori Turner)

When we moved into our 1972 two-story, one of the fun features of the home was that it had a wet bar. But like the rest of the house, it was in sore need of an update. It was covered in a cowboy themed wallpaper with glass shelves, a dated countertop and worn cabinets. The sink didn’t drain right and the overhead light was an eyesore.

The wet bar before:

Wet bar with cowboy wallpaper

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

We’re big coffee drinkers so we made the decision to turn the wet bar into a coffee nook and give it a modern farmhouse feel. By making the most of what we had and DIYing the rest, we got impressive results and this project even came in a little under budget.

Refreshing the kitchen cabinet color

Black kitchen cabinet handles

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

We started by painting the kitchen cabinets. We chose Perpetual Gray by Sherwin Williams which you can find at Lowe's and this really set the tone for the rest of the house. We used this color in our kitchen, laundry room, guest bath and for our interior doors, as well. It helped create a cohesive look throughout our home. Then we updated the coffee bar cabinet doors with black knobs.

DIY butcher block counters

Light grey kitchen cabinet with silver handle and kitchen cloth

(Image credit: Dori Turney)

For the countertops, we purchased an unfinished pine board and made DIY butcher block counters. We cut the board to size and saved money by staining it with a stain we already had on hand from another project. 

Repositioning the sink

Sink mid-wet bar transformation

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

We went back and forth on whether or not to keep the sink, but in the end decided it would be handy to be able to fill up the coffee pot right there. We kept the current sink and faucet from the wet bar to save money and just repositioned it to the side so that we could have room for a coffee maker. We cut the hole in the butcher block for the sink and then sealed the butcher block with Watco Butcher Block Sealer (this sealer is available at. Lowe's also) to protect the wood.

Shiplap walls

Coffee nook with decorative writing on kitchen wall

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

Instead of removing the wallpaper, we decided to shiplap over it. We purchased primed MDF shiplap for the project. This made for a quick and budget-friendly solution to the dated wallpaper and it looks amazing! We filled the nail holes with putty we already had on hand, sanded it down and gave it a coat of white paint.

Country style lighting

Metal pendant lamp with gather decorative wall writing

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

The existing light was originally in the ceiling of the wet bar. We chose to move the box down to the back wall and installed a galvanized metal farmhouse style light. It really added some character to the space! 

Functional fixtures

Coffee nook with coffee maker and hanging cups on wooden countertop material

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

We installed black farmhouse style hooks to either side of the coffee nook for a convenient way to store mugs. We also installed a towel bar to the false drawer front to hang hand towels, which has been really handy! 

The final result:

Coffee nook with grey kitchen cabinets, coffee maker and silver handle detail

(Image credit: Dori Turner)

The final touch was to add the “gather” sign I found on sale at a home decor store. It speaks to what we desire our home to be – a gathering place for friends and family! 

Real Costs: A breakdown of tool and material costs

Our budget for the coffee bar project was $250 and we were able to stay just under that by doing it ourselves and shopping around to find the best prices. Also, choosing to go with DIY butcher block counters instead of a stone countertop saved us tons!

  • Cabinet paint: $35
  • Cabinet hardware: $5
  • Butcher block countertop: $25
  • Butcher block stain: FREE 
  • Butcher block sealer: $15
  • Sink and faucet: FREE
  • Shiplap: $85
  • Paint: $15
  • Galvanized metal farmhouse light: $30
  • Farmhouse hooks: $15
  • Towel bar: $5
  • Gather sign: $12

Total cost: $242

We love how this space turned out! Instead of being an eyesore, it’s become a showpiece of our home. We use it every single day and get tons of compliments when we have guests over! 

Dori Turner
Dori Turner

Dori Turner writes blog posts and feature articles on affordable design and DIY from her home in the heart of Oklahoma. She has a passion for teaching others how they can transform their home on a budget.