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Sideboards are unassuming pieces of furniture but they are actually really useful in many rooms around the house. Whether you want one for the kitchen, dining room, living room or hallway, they can neatly store away all sorts of bits and bobs while staying stylishly unassuming against a wall.

What are sideboards used for?

Sideboards were traditionally placed in the dining room and used to serve food and store dinnerware. However, nowadays the sideboard is no longer confined to just the dining room and can often be found all over the house, including living rooms and hallways. It is also used to house and display a variety of different household items from DVDs and paperwork to children’s toys and kitchen utensils.

What size sideboard should I consider?

Take into account the overall size of the room, the size of your dining table if you’re putting your sideboard in the dining room, and the size of any other furniture you have in the space. In general, sideboards are large, heavy pieces, so be sure yours balances the room instead of overpowering it.

What style sideboard should I choose?

Sideboards date back to the 18th century, but today’s selection includes contemporary and modern styles in addition to antiques. When considering a style, take into account the theme that your dining room currently represents and try to find something that will complement it. A splash of bright paint on an antique will create a contemporary edge, or an all-white mid-century piece may add an interesting contrast to a modern table. Choose an oak sideboard with some open shelving if you’d like to keep favourite items accessible and/or on display. For the items that you’d like to keep behind closed doors, cabinetry in glass, frosted glass or hand-painted oak are all great options, depending on your needs. Consider sliding cabinet doors to avoid getting in the way of foot traffic.

Can I put a small sideboard in the hallway?

Of course – don’t feel like your sideboard has to stay the dining room. Pair one with an oversized mirror or dramatic piece of artwork to play up the drama in your hallway, or use one as a chest of drawers or dresser in the bedroom. You could even use one for storage space in a home office.

What should you put in your sideboard?

If you’re placing your sideboard in the dining room, then use it for anything that makes serving easier. Think dinnerware, glassware, flatware, linens, china, candlesticks, extra salt and pepper shakers, and decorative knick knacks. Elsewhere in the house you can use your sideboard to store or display anything you like; shoes in the hallway, books and magazines in the living room or accessories in the bedroom.
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