The One Piece of Furniture You Probably Need

Do you ever find yourself sounding like a broken record (do you young things even know what a broken record is)?  As a decorator, I find that one of the most versatile pieces of furniture is a long, narrow buffet table or sideboard.  Let me convince you.



I love a good buffet in a dining room, but it can and should be used in other rooms as well. I’m sure this one languished for years before it was painted, simply fading away into the background of a wood-stuffed dining room.  All it takes is a great color to revive a gem like this.

via Pinterest


An entry often needs a narrow console table as a landing spot for keys and such.  A buffet is a great alternative for this spot.


via Pinterest

Whether you mount your flat screen television on the wall or not, it really needs some kind of console below it to ground it.  And a long sideboard or buffet table gives you the opportunity to create a vignette so that it’s not all about the tv.

 via Pinterest


Placing a television on a nice, long piece beneath an interesting art grouping is so much nicer than the alternative:  having the television serve as the main focal point of the room (blah).

via Pinterest


And I’m kinda stoked that the old defunct stereo cabinets finally have a reason for a makeover.  They are typically low-slung and a great length for a tv console.

via Pinterest 


Do you need more lighting in your living room?  Don’t just put a lamp on a small table somewhere.  A buffet table is a great place to park a collection and a big lamp while squeezing in a bit of storage beneath while you’re at it!

via Pinterest

Maybe it’s not really a buffet at all, and rather a bedroom dresser.  Who cares if it fits the bill (in regards to scale) and works in the space?  For me, it’s always about the size and shape of a piece.  And there’s always a long, lonely wall in most people’s homes that could use a nice long table.  Whether that’s really a console table, sofa table, buffet, credenza, dresser, or an old stereo cabinet – I don’t really care, so long as it works.  And that it can be painted, of course!

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21 thoughts on “The One Piece of Furniture You Probably Need

  1. Tricia says:

    I too have been searching for a buffet or any old piece of furniture that
    is long and narrow for my flat screen TV. I love when they are stained a
    dark color on top and painted something bold on the bottom.

  2. Susanne says:

    I’m in total agreement. The perfect place would be in the living room. The big screen TV would look much better on a buffet than a than traditional black, glass front entertainment unit with the two side cabinets. Not only would it look more finished, but It would allow more space for storage. However, it would not hide all of the billions of cords that I now hide behind the unit. Uh Oh!

      • Susanne says:

        Thank you for the great suggetions Kristie. I think for our purposes a dresser or credenza would work really well. At some point I hope together we can further address this issue along with many others. I’m also hoping to incorporate a little color into our lives. The entire house is just one big project waiting for help. With time….

  3. Jill says:

    I can so relate to this posting. I have a buffet, much like the first one shown here, that I have used in so many ways! First it started out in my dining room, then in a long hallway/entryway (and yes Kristie it was perfect for that awkward long wall), at the foot of my king sized bed (loved it there!), back into the dining room then back onto a long wall again and currently the busy piece of furniture is in my living room with my flat screen television on it right now. The buffet can and should be used in so many ways! I took my cords and tied them up behind the buffet and placed a basket under it to hide the outlet full of plugs. I have had it for about 20 years and used it in 3 different houses. Oh and to Jenny, I am not sure where all you have looked but I live in Tennessee and these type buffets are plentiful around here. Good Luck finding one! Great post Kristie and I totally agree!

  4. Paula Van Hoogen says:

    A little late joining this discussion–our internet seldom works these days:(.
    I use 2 servers to the hilt–one in dining room for our grandson’s home school materials and another in the foyer for keys, etc. Love any piece of furniture used in a new way!
    Love the first image –did you paint that yourself?
    Kristie–love the photo of you–so pretty –at the paint class. Hope to make the next one!
    Just recommended your blog tonight to another new friend!
    Enjoying your articles on Houzz!!

  5. Holly says:

    Amen to that! And now I just need to find “the” buffet/console that catches my eye. I’ve been looking for a while and just haven’t found the one – but I agree that it can really be a versatile piece.

  6. Robin says:

    It’s amazing how versatile this larger sized piece of furniture can be! I actually have 4 throughout my downstairs.

    The most interesting are a Henry Link Bali Hai faux bamboo “bedroom dresser” being used in my dining room, and my 80’s style dining room display credenza I painted BM Dill Pickle and covered the glass panels with Robert Allen Fabric in the Crystal Lake pattern, Midnight color, that I moved to the foyer. Its really cute. And to think my hubby wanted me to get rid of both those gems!

  7. Haley Tiner says:

    Yes, yes, yes! I love the yellow buffet table and have been looking for something just like this. Do you have any idea where I can buy a buffet table online that is painted red? I would love to paint one myself but with 2 children under the age of 2 and a full time job and husband I just dont have the time!


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  9. ACMcGaha says:


    Pretty sure this is the definition of bringing a post back from the dead; however, well, I need to know. I have a “buffet” that I have generally used in “the dining room” portion of a Great Room. I have had it set up in as a bar with an ice bucket and liquor bottles on the top (even thought I don’t really drink…lol). We are moving to a house that has a built-in buffet/china cabinet in the (formal) dining room. The house also has a (formal) living room. I plan to put the buffet in the living room (like a console table) – it will be the first thing you see as you enter the front door (along the back wall of the living room) – I am wondering if it would be appropriate to use it in the same way (as a bar) in the living room, or if I should move the liquor bottles to the built-in in the dining room?

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