Inspirational tips on How to style a dining room buffet

Your dining room buffet corner is always cozier when you design it preciously. Be it a sideboard, console table, or buffet, don’t forget that the look is not only about focusing on the dining table but much more. This long surface is a perfect place to express yourself in serving comfort and uniqueness. Let’s be real-deal-inspired and talk about how to play it right.

Speaking of the house’s three major players to decorate: together with a dining table and a coffee table, there is always a buffet table, the heart of a dining room.

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Just like that, you can display your personality through the interior.

Often a buffet table is used to keep serving platters, cutlery, wines, and spirits, or even for extra plates when throwing big dinner parties like on Christmas or Thanksgiving Day. But on a regular day, it is a live presentation of your favorite decor items.

A dining buffet is a geometrical heaven: due to the dimensions of this type of furniture, it not only comes as a storage space but has the potential to become a whole composition of pretty decor and angles. So how do you decorate a buffet table at home?

Here are a dozen of bright ideas to take on.

How to style a dining room buffet? Not a dining table but better: practical side

Space Saver

When furnishing dining rooms, many use buffet tables to create extra storage. Although it has a variety of uses, the focal point of the item is to save up space for serving platters, serving stands, trays, and even linens for different occasions happening in the dining room.

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Also, you can keep candlesticks and candles, containers, cutlery sets, and other eating utensils – in other words, everything you’ll need while dining.

The buffet can also be a perfect spot for your bottle collection to become a mini-bar. Sometimes these furniture pieces are designed to help us present the most delightful glassware collection!

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The needings

Sometimes the top of the buffet table is a place where we leave our everyday things: different small trinkets, the keys, a cardholder, or a smartphone charger.

Add a pretty basket to put all the small items you need when it’s time to go out.

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How to style a dining room buffet? What do you put on top of buffet tables?

So, how can I decorate my buffet in a dining room, and what do I put on top of it? Let’s find out first: here are a couple of tips.

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The big ones

We use tall or massive decor on both ends of the buffet table to create symmetry. Those can be designer vases, sculptures, lamps, candlesticks, and many more.

Symmetry can also be different: you can buy two identical objects (e.g., elegant candlesticks or lamps providing comforting low light) or pair two diverse ones of the same color.

Styled together on the left and right sides, these guys can make a strong statement, rather than a big group of small items placed all over the surface.

Also, you can group smaller objects on a plate or tray on one side of the sideboard when adding one tall item on the other side. Better to leave some space between them to keep the right balance.

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The uniting bridge

To decorate a buffet or a console table, some consider using small-sized every day yet fashionable objects to create unity between two sides of the buffet table: classic books, glasses, cups, trinkets, vases, and even a single plate of fruit.

These may look more simplified, but come on, it’s not all about the gorgeousness but the coziness! Just imagine how stylish a pile of books near the massive designer vase would look.

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The organics

Added to the dining space, fresh flowers and your favorite plants brighten the buffet table. Moreover, they tend to increase your home’s air quality.

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Here are some options: summer flowers, fruits, greens, houseplants, faux blooms, plants, grass, and mixed small potted plants.

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How to style a dining room buffet? How to create an outer composition

The mirror

Want to have a sophisticated image of your new buffet? Then double all the items by adding a mirror or even two behind them! Just think of all the variety of frames you can add: ancient-looking, old-fashioned, modern, wooden. Sounds awesome.

Putting a mirror next to your buffet table is also a wise decision to create extra false space in a dining room.

You can also create a 3D look by adding one smaller mirror in front of another. Let the magic happen!

The light

If you want to highlight your buffet table and all the decor items – but there’s no purpose in overfilling the surface – decor the wall with wall lamps. This decision will provide warm ambient light and create a welcoming space for guests and loved ones.

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The above-ings

What do you put on a wall over a buffet?

Depending on your preferences, transfer the focal point from the buffet table to items decorating the wall.

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I already mentioned a tip for putting a mirror behind, but it can also be:

  • art hung in the center of the whole composition,
  • group of framed photos,
  • posters,
  • collection of dried herbs.

And much more!

And whether the painting is hung on the wall or stands on the sideboard, it has to be 2/3 of its width. That’d make the right proportion pleasing to the eye.

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How to style a dining room buffet? Let’s come together: how to group objects

The art of grouping

Three is a magical number – it’s all about our minds.

When grouping objects, I always think of putting them in threes: simple, beautiful, and balanced. One item on the surface could look less entertaining, while four or five could seem crowded. So, why not three?

Our eyes are clever: seeing a grouping of three candlesticks in the center of the table having a lot of other lovely serving items, you notice the candle trinity first. The same goes for styling threes on the dining room sideboard.

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The art of mixing

To add life to the composition on a buffet tr console table, don’t be scared to layer things and match objects of different styles, sizes, and heights.

Take inspiration from fashion. If you love modern-looking wood, choose a plain white buffet table or a white sideboard, add traditional items on top of it, and compliment it with a painting.

Don’t stick to the same style. Go for a fresher, more youthful look instead.

Add interest by layering accessories with higher and larger decor items in front of one another, having a big mirror behind as a canvas.

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The color palette

One of the main rules when styling a sideboard is to use colors already used in the room. I’d recommend you choose something calming and nature-brought, like sand, beige, gray or white, complimented with green and brown.

Even if your room is color-infused and modern, stick to a tight palette. Let it be your comfort zone.

For more ideas check out the article – Sideboard decor ideas – 10 buffet styling tips.

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How to style dining buffet during seasonal changes


Winter is that time of the year when everybody hurries to design everything at home with Christmas-themed decor. There’s nothing better than putting on your favorite song and giving your house a festive vibe.

How do you decorate a buffet in winter?

Get greens: fresh magnolia, boxwood, pine, fir, winterberry, and cranberry. Add them to about half of the vases near your everyday buffet decor collection so as not to overpower the space. Put a wreath above the buffet table.

Adding a hand-made poinsettia tree would be a nice touch too.

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How to make a perfect romantic spring buffet look?

When the colds are already on their way to leave, decorate a mirror or painting hung above the buffet table with garlands made of faux greens. Add a couple of white flowers, and voilà! Home season is changed.

As for late spring, buy some fresh flowers and put them into a glass pastel vase. A true inspiration for new beginnings!

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Summer tends to be the greenest time of the year. So, why not decorate a buffet spreading the love for nature and fresh greens and plants placed right on top?

Enlighten the sideboard with boldness, adding bright-colored glassware and other decor items.

Need for more color? Use bright yellow, pink, or green linens while styling a table.

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Halloween and Thanksgiving: what time of the year! Even more than winter, Fall is overwhelmed with a festive mood. There’s plenty of ways to add a delightful, warm spirit to your home by simply taking inspiration from your yard.

Take miniature pumpkins, design a fall wreath, then hang it above the sideboard. Grab a bunch of fresh-fallen leaves of red, orange, and yellow colors and put them into a bowl or a vase.

Add some pine cones and evergreens to refer to the soon winter coming.

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FAQ: How to style a dining room buffet

How do you style a buffet dining room?

To style a buffet in a dining room, start by placing a statement centerpiece like a vase of fresh flowers or a decorative sculpture in the center of the buffet. Arrange a combination of functional items, such as dinnerware and glassware, along with decorative elements like candles, framed artwork, or a mirror, to create a balanced and visually appealing display.

How do I make my buffet look nice?

To make your buffet look nice, opt for a cohesive color scheme that complements your dining room’s decor. Layer decorative items of varying heights and textures, such as stacked plates, candleholders, and framed art, while leaving enough space for functional items like serving dishes and utensils to ensure both style and functionality.

How do you set up a dining room table as a buffet?

To set up a dining room table as a buffet, start by clearing the table of unnecessary items. Cover it with a clean tablecloth or runner, then arrange the serving dishes in a logical order, keeping hot dishes together and providing utensils, napkins, and plates at one end for easy access.

What do you put on a dining room buffet table?

On a dining room buffet table, you can place a mix of decorative and functional items. This might include a statement centerpiece, such as a vase of flowers or a sculptural piece, along with serving dishes, platters, and utensils for easy access during meals.

To sum up: How to style a dining room buffet

Take a glance at your dining room: does it need a restyle? Or you’re just planning to create a cozy buffet space?

Then follow these rules and make your own buffet table art project!

Start by choosing the right color palette for your room, then go for accents and furnishings. Try to look for a less bold color for the buffet, as it already contains other decor objects.

Think about what to put inside the sideboard and how to make it practical. Ask yourself what will you need while dining and whether you’ll put your everyday belongings onto the buffet (like keys and other little trinkets) or keep it occasion-only.

A win-win for decorating a buffet table is to put identical or similarly large or tall items at each end and add smaller uniting items between them.

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Choose a large picture or mirror to create an art space where the sideboard is the main actor.

Add fresh greens, flowers, or houseplants to bring a mother nature spirit to your dining room. Use faux blooms when there’s no chance to get fresh ones due to bad weather.

Install wall lighting to make your sideboard look even more chic and elegant. Ambient light is always warming and hospitable for your guests, friends, loved ones, and yourself.

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And to make things clear:

  • layer items of different sizes, but don’t overlay
  • better avoid the big collection of small things brought together
  • play with textures and styles
  • remember the rule of grouping in threes
  • don’t be afraid of redesigning a place according to seasonal changing

The number of decorating ideas is countless, as you may not easily find your way to decorate a buffet at first. But as you experiment, give that a try! You’ll find your style for sure, just take time. And go shopping!

At least, if not for the stylish dinner parties, but yourself and fun, am I right?

Also, you may be interested in – Best rug for under dining table (what size to choose)

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