Sideboards are the unsung heroes of our home, perfectly combining form and function. As one of the most versatile pieces of furniture out there, sideboards are popular in many different types of homes. They typically fall under the multifunctional category when it comes to home furnishings, offering a place to store away everyday items and also a place to display favourite home decor pieces. Sideboards can work in every area of the home, but you’ll usually find them in living rooms, hallways and bedrooms.
Where space is tight, smaller and taller sideboards can be a great option for using the height of the room. Sometimes, however, your space might call for a large sideboard. With retro design on the up, mid-century sideboards are the perfect solution for those who need more storage space, without taking up too much height. They’re often wider, which allows for more styling options on top. In this blog, we’ll explore the top 5 uses for sideboard cabinets so you can decide whether this versatile furniture piece is right for you and your place.
1. As a statement piece in the living room
Large sideboards can help to finish off a living room look with little effort needed. Most living rooms that look put-together or ‘finished’ have incorporated a focal point into their design. Put simply, a focal point is an interior design choice that draws the eye towards that area and helps to tie together the rest of the room cohesively. In retro-style living rooms, a wooden sideboard was often used as a base for adding personality to the room.
Create a statement area to focus on by styling your living room sideboard with decor pieces that add to the overall look. Experiment with vases, pile the sideboard high with books or add your favourite plants to the top of your sideboard. With a wider sideboard, there are even more possibilities for styling, especially when it's placed behind an armchair or sofa. Keep to 3-4 different elements to avoid your sideboard looking cluttered. To create a cosy feel and elevate the look, add a lamp with a warm glow to your living room sideboard.
2. As an at-home bar
Any space can be elevated with a sideboard, and what better way to do it than turning yours into an at-home bar? Wide sideboards come with plenty of storage space, and when placed in living rooms make brilliant mini bars for all of your favourite tipples. Dress up a mid-century sideboard to create a focal point that’s also functional. On top of your sideboard bar, styling can be made easy by incorporating a few decorative trays. Pick trays to go with your colour scheme and overall vibe, and keep your most aesthetically pleasing bottles on display.
Image: Emily Henderson
Arrange feature glassware like tumblers, high ball glasses or cocktail flutes on top of your sideboard - these can double up as decor when they’re not being used. Then, make use of your sideboard’s ample storage by hiding away everything else you need to create the perfect cocktail (or mocktail), like shakers, ice scoops, extra coasters, napkins and more. Turning your sideboard into an at-home bar is one of the best ways to make use of it in a living room, where you can host at a moment’s notice, or reach for your favourite drink on an evening.
3. For extra dining room storage
Up your dinner party game and get guest-ready in the dining room. Wide sideboards are great when placed on the longest side of the dining room, providing a place for all of your decor but also a handy way to store tableware. If you’re known for hosting big groups or you aspire to be the life of the dinner party, you might want to consider this piece of furniture. Sideboards are great for storing dining room items like plates, bowls and extra cutlery.
Image: Paper and Stitch
Display signature pieces on top of your dining room sideboard like serving bowls and glassware. In sideboard cupboards, stow away everything you need for the best food-related get-togethers. Large items like serving bowls, water jugs and serving spoons will fit into your sideboard, which saves space for your everyday items in the kitchen cupboards. Plus, you’ll always have somewhere to neatly fold away tablecloths and napkins.
4. As a way to add personality to bedrooms
Because sideboards are such versatile pieces of furniture, they’re also brilliant additions to bedrooms. If you’re not interested in a vanity unit, consider making space for a bedroom sideboard. As they’re a little lower than a usual chest of drawers, sideboards make great places to both store items and inject personality into the bedroom through styling choices on top. Lean a mirror against the wall by using a sideboard, or display your own personal framed photos to make your bedroom feel more homely.
If you’re a fan of a Sunday morning lie-in accompanied by your favourite show, use a wide sideboard in the bedroom for your TV. Wider sideboards are perfect for bigger screens if that’s your thing. Of course, it’s not all about what’s on top of your sideboard. Drawers and cupboards can be used to store away anything you like - clothing, extra bed linen, shoes and more. Because of their split storage, sideboards make brilliant organisers for accessories like scarves, hats, belts and jewellery.
5. For decorative hallway storage
If your entrance is looking more cluttered than welcoming, a wide sideboard might be the addition you need to make a better first impression. Hallways, especially tight spaces, tend to become drop zones where clothes, bags and more end up being dropped upon your arrival home. Creating an inviting entranceway that’s free of clutter will have a big impact on how the rest of your home feels, so it’s important not to forget about this when furnishing your space.
Image: Cosy HomePlace a wide sideboard against the wall, and use it to store away your everyday items like dog leads, shoes, scarves, hats and the like. Then, use the top of the sideboard to create a perfectly styled area that’s also functional. There’s a lot you can do with a hallway sideboard. Try adding a decorative tray to keep important letters and mail neat and tidy, add a lamp for a warming and inviting glow, or dress up your sideboard with vases and pieces of your favourite art.