Both practical and stylish, the signage you put on display at your nuptials is an essential component of any wedding. Not only does the programming relay important information about your event, but it also reinforces your aesthetic. The wedding bar sign, in particular, details the drinks you’ll be serving at cocktail hour while setting the mood for this phase of festivities through creative shapes, designs, patterns, colors, and fonts.
The options to animate your beverage station’s signage are truly limitless. For one, you can use the type of material to create the ambiance and establish the location, whether it’s a wooden sign for a rustic theme in the countryside or an aztec-inspired piece of fabric for a camp wedding in the great outdoors. Playing around with different shapes will also bring a fun edge to your cocktail hour. Consider a semicircle for modern nuptials or a wave for a vow exchange on the beach. To further enhance the overall feel, experiment with different typefaces. Throwing a romantic affair? Choose an intricate cursive font. Designing a minimalist gathering? Try a bolded one.
There are also plenty of ways to personalize your bar sign. Paint a picture of your pet, show off your joint initiates, or flex your artistic talents by sketching your own illustration. Once you’ve settled on the design, brainstorm unique ways to phrase your wine, beer, and cocktail options for a one-of-a-kind arrangement. Use puns for the introduction, or concoct creative names for your signature drinks.
If you still aren’t sure how to debut your booze, we’ve rounded up 17 drink menu ideas for every type of event. Keep scrolling to check out wedding bar sign ideas that are guaranteed to wow your guests.
Honor Your Pet
Without a doubt, your pet is a VIP guest who deserves special treatment—even if they aren't attending your festivities. Pay homage to your furry friend by asking an artist to create a custom illustration of them to accompany your signature cocktail selection. You can even name your drinks after your favorite four-legged creature. To really go all out, seal your invitations, ceremony programs, cocktail napkins, and menu cards with the drawing.
Paint the Landscape
If the setting is the focal point of your celebration, you can also use art to set the scene. For mountain or forest weddings, include a sketch of the trees that surround your venue. Place your cocktail menu in a wooden frame and arrange the entire setup on a wooden bar to highlight the materials found in the natural landscape.
Choose a Unique Shape
Although most wedding bar signs are framed in a rectangle or square, choose an alternative shape that hints at your aesthetic or theme. If you’re saying “I do” in the sand—whether it’s Turks and Caicos or Southern California—channel the beachy setting by listing your liquid refreshments on a plaque that resembles a wave. Paint the menu in blue to mirror the ocean.
Embrace a Bright Color
Are you hosting a celebration bursting with color? Exhibit your signature cocktails, wine, and beer on a vibrant panel. Choose a hue from your color palette to form the basis of your menu, and write the items in white for contrast and readability. We love this baby pink color for spring or summer nuptials. By using an eye-catching shade for your background, you won't need additional designs to make a statement.
Create a Custom Monogram
One of the best ways to commemorate this new chapter as newlyweds is creating a custom crest that combines you and your partner’s first initials. Your bar menu is the perfect canvas to proudly place your monogram. For a modern or minimalist look, select a black shade against a white backdrop. Add this emblem to the rest of your paper goods—from your save-the-dates to the table numbers—for a recurring motif.
Paste It on Fabric
Who says you have to limit yourself to paper or plastic for the foundation of your cocktail menu? At Madeline Tomseth and Mikell Warms’ camp wedding in Oregon, the couple had their beverage lineup plastered on a wooden board, which was nailed to a piece of fabric with an aztec-inspired print. The alternative material and pattern hinted at their organic theme and setting in an intriguing way.
Draw Your Drinks
To give your guests a visual representation of your refreshment selection, feature a sketch of each signature cocktail. Enlist an illustrator to paint your drinks, including the garnishes and glasses they’ll be served in. Not only will these masterpieces add personality to your cocktail hour, but they’ll also help friends and family make their decision more easily.
Look to Lucite
Using an acrylic sign is a chic way to announce your celebratory sips. With a see-through surface, the lettering will stand out, so consider ornate calligraphy and bold typography. Although lucite lends well to contemporary weddings, its transparent nature makes it a versatile option that’s ideal for any type of aesthetic.
Select a Floral Border
Since flowers are such an integral part of any couple’s big day, why not adorn your bar menu with them? Present your alcoholic beverages in the center of your sign, and accentuate them with a floral illustration around the perimeter. Incorporate the same blooms and hues as those in your bar arrangements, centerpieces, and bouquet. This floral-inspired signage is an elegant option for garden soirées or warm-weather weddings where foliage is the primary focus.
Keep It Minimalist
You don’t need an elaborate design or a striking hue to make a lasting impression. A simple white sign in a gold frame is always sleek and sophisticated, especially for modern nuptials with a neutral palette. Since Santa López and Troy Davis got married at an ancient monastery in Miami, they wanted their venue to be the main attraction. So, they embraced metallic touches to complement the locale.
Instead of a flat, one-dimensional design, layer different shapes and materials to enhance the visual intrigue at your cocktail hour. A circular signature cocktail menu set against latticework will bring depth to any bar setup. For a retro-chic wedding, bold graphics with a pop of color will make your theme come to life.
Use Fun Lighting
While your cocktail menu sign is definitely striking on its own, uplighting will make it even more noticeable. Placing light sources at the base of your plaque is most effective with acrylic surfaces because it will enliven any artwork or calligraphy. We recommend turning on the switch later in the evening once your reception room gets dark, so all focus will be on the bar.
Consider a Mirrored Surface
Besides lucite, another alternative material that packs a punch is a mirrored one. By placing “his” and “hers” cocktails on a reflective disc, other surrounding details will shine—whether it’s the tilework or floral assortments. Separate your signature drink menu from your general booze selection with two separate signs to explore various designs.
Play With Different Fonts
Beyond colors, shapes, and patterns, the font you select has a lot of potential to set the tone for your cocktail hour. Not only did the bar sign at Kelsey Quickstad and Michael Smith's wedding combine different typefaces for a unique effect, but it also showcased the power of placement. Here, bubble letters were drawn inside the outline of the couple’s two signature cocktails. If you have an artistic hand, you can even sketch your own lettering.
Add Tropical Accents
Looking for an effortless way to reference your tropical theme? Infuse palm leaves into your bar menu design. For a subtle inclusion, choose a white base with a few sketches of tropical greenery. For an all-over design, select a background with a palm leaf pattern. As a nod to the nature around you, frame your sign in wood. A bamboo bar accented with brass lamps and citrus fruits will help drive the theme home.
Nod to Nature
For vow exchanges in the great outdoors, look to beautiful moments in nature to inspire your bar menu design. Caitlin McGee and Patrick Woodall envisioned a dreamy aesthetic that captured a California sunset, so their specialty cocktail sign portrayed the time of day when daylight fades. On their signage, an orange circular shape representing the sun sunk beneath pink and brown designs, which depicted the wooded terrain of Yosemite National Park.
Choose a Semicircle
If you’re looking for another way to replace the traditional rectangular shape, consider a semicircle for your sign. This arched design is a worthwhile choice for modern or glamorous nuptials. Choose a neutral base if you want nearby floral displays to attract attention.