While many homeowners labor over their choice of a dining room table and chairs, there’s another piece of furniture that demands equal consideration; the dining room sideboard.
Whether you do a lot of entertaining or only put on a big feast during the holidays, you’ll quickly find that a sideboard will be one of the most indispensable pieces of furniture you’ll have.
During a big meal, dining table space is always at a premium. This is particularly true during Thanksgiving or Christmas, when everyone’s favorites have to be within reach. The table brims with holiday favorites, from the holiday ham or turkey to all the fixings. Once you add in the plates, silverware and goblets, there’s precious little space leftover.
This is where a dining room sideboard really shines. It is designed from the ground up to serve as an additional staging area. Above, less popular dishes can be kept after they made the rounds with your guests, still close enough to access, but out of the way. Below, you can store all of your favorite serving pieces.
Before dinner, you can use your dining room sideboard for your appetizers and beverages. It easily doubles as a cocktail or wine bar. Or use it for your punch bowl.
You can use a sideboard as an accent piece, too. It doesn’t have to match the table and chairs. Rather, it can be a different color or even a different style. While most sideboards were made of wood in the past, today they come in a variety of materials, colors and styles, allowing you to add a little flair to an otherwise traditional dining room.
So, what can the dining room sideboard do when you’re not entertaining? When the dishes have been cleared away, think about adding a dynamic display to it. You don’t want to load it up with knickknacks so it looks cluttered. Rather, think about adding a piece a sculpture, a treasured antique or a beautiful vase with a spray of flowers to add color and visual impact to the sideboard. The right pieces can really make it pop.
Of course, a dining room sideboard is also a great piece for storage. If you have formal dinnerware, lots of serving pieces, linens, candles and other items for entertaining, you’ll find that a sideboard is a great addition to your dining area. Most sideboards have doored storage down below, containing either drawers or shelves. A piece with both drawers and shelves is the best option, since you have more flexibility. Best of all, you can keep extra napkins, lighters and candles there so you don’t have to run off to the kitchen when the occasion calls for them. Simply reach into a drawer behind you and voila! – the dinner party continues without interruption.
While most sideboards are long and not too wide, so they can fit easily along one of the walls, there’s no rule that says you have to stick with tradition. You can choose any style you want, including highly decorative pieces or a richly detailed antique.
If room allows, think about having more than one dining room sideboard. As any person who entertains regularly now, there’s no such thing as having too much space for serving in a dining room. Having several sideboards not only gives you more table real estate to work with, but more storage as well.
As you can see, a sideboard can really complete the look of a dining room while adding much need functionality and flexibility. Perhaps that is the reason why they continue to remain a popular piece of furniture in today’s home. They offer so much to the homeowner who loves furniture that is not only beautiful, but functional as well.
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