Three Ways to Style Your Buffet

I always like to play this game in my head of, “If I had to completely start over with zero furniture, what piece would I be most sad to part with?” I have a few finds that I can’t imagine ever being lucky enough to stumble across again, but the answer is always the buffet in our dining room. My parents purchased this antique when they first got engaged. They stored their wedding album and family photos inside and I’d always sneak in to look at them when I was younger. They gave this piece of furniture to us when we got married and so I have continued that tradition of storing family albums.

We’ve always lived in open concept homes. It’s amazing for always seeing your kids, but I *do* miss walls. I always want little spots to style frames or built-in bookshelves. This buffet acts as my sentimental piece of furniture because it houses family photos on the inside and acts as a space to show them off on the outside.

If you have a buffet or sideboard that you need help styling, I’m sharing three ways to style yours today.

To start, I like to have an anchor. This mirror from Pottery Barn {older and not available} creates as an anchor at the back of the buffet and I have symmetry with art flanking either side. This would be a great spot for a sunburst mirror, too. The art is by Kayce Hughes.

lamps | frame | tray | bunny | tortoise bowl | book | glass bowl {similar} | similar moss balls | acrylic block | similar oyster cross | similar vase | frame

For The Colorful Girl

If you are a more colorful girl, you love pops of your favorite hues and flowers to match, this is how I’d style your buffet. I know some people have rules for groupings {odd numbers, groups of threes, etc.} but here is how I do it. Here, I’ve got three anchors of color. I’ve got roses, moss balls in a bowl, and then a vase. Then, I pop groupings off of those 2 anchors on either side. This sounds like a mouthful and you may be thinking, “Huh?!” but check out my IGTV today explaining this. Basically give your decor little sections to be grouped in, but I think as long as it looks balanced on either side with height, you can do as many pieces as your heart desires. 😉

Acrylic blocks are the perfect additions to buffets, you can get my Jenn Thatcher ones on sale with code KATEY50 at checkout.

tortoise bowl

topiary {sold out}, similar | birch candle | diptyque candle | watercolor bowl | similar moss balls | similar book | similar tray | similar match holder | candle wick trimmer | lamp

For the Girl with Transitional Style

If you have more of a transitional style, or maybe you like everything to be a bit more simplistic and serve a purpose, use this as your frame of reference. The easy thing about this example of styling a buffet is it could work in a multitude of home styles. I’ve got symmetry with a lamp and a topiary that has similar height. Add in coordination by drawing the green into the moss balls, which give texture and add as an anchor piece to draw your eye up to the main anchor, the mirror. For your decor on either side, be purposeful. A tray with candles and a wick trimmer, a grouping of candles, coffee table books all give a beautiful look but don’t add to clutter.

lamps | gold frame | plate | candle | heart frame | similar dogs | tray | velvet frame | blue frame

For the Sentimental Girl

This is how I have our buffet styled most of the time! I like to say it is for the sentimental girl because I can overwhelm the buffet with family photos and it still works. I keep a bar tray in the center as an anchor. It’s functional as I can’t have a bar cart with H and I can easily serve our guest in the dining room, but it also is a nice bit of texture and color next to framed photos. I have balance on either side with Staffordshire Dogs, you can get some online, but I always say they are the most fun to find at antique malls. Again with the groupings as mentioned above, I’ve got two taller pieces, a plate and a frame, and then three items coming off of each.

While I use different frames, I like to create a complimentary look with frames that play off textures {shagreen, gold, velvet} to make them look as if they belong together, but it’s not a matchy-matchy look.

No matter how you’d define your style, I hope you enjoy grabbing some frames, finding anchor pieces, and enjoying the process of styling a large piece of furniture in your home. Which way is your favorite?!

Leave a Note

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. Amber Creswick wrote:

    My buffet is outside outside of our dining room so it is decorated transitional style. Since yours is in your dining room, it looks perfect with the bar tray on it.

    Published 28 Jun 21Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      Thank you, girl!! xx, Katey

      Published 28 Jun 21Reply
  2. Kensey wrote:

    I got the idea for the bar tray from a previous post but this really helps me figure out how to make it look more cohesive.. great idea for a post!!

    Published 28 Jun 21Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      I’m so glad this helps you, Kensey! Thanks for reading! xx, Katey

      Published 28 Jun 21Reply
  3. Allyson Lacoste wrote:

    I loved how you did this blog and IGTV!! Would love to see one for how you style shelves! Like your bookshelf in your room and your dining room. Thank you this was awesome!!

    Published 28 Jun 21Reply
  4. VIVIAN TEJEDA wrote:

    Where did you get the gold porcelain vase?

    Published 03 Sep 21Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      Hi Vivian! Thanks so much for reading. I got it from a vintage Instagram shop where they do vintage flash sales weekly. xx, Katey

      Published 06 Sep 21Reply
  5. Madison Renfrow wrote:

    Do you happen to know what type of wood the buffet is made out of? I absolutely love it!!

    Published 29 Nov 21Reply
    • Katey wrote:

      I’m so sorry I don’t! 🙁

      Published 02 Dec 21Reply
  6. S. Marie wrote:

    A reader(Madison) asked what type of wood your buffet is made of.
    You didn’t know. It is BIRDS EYE MAPLE done in the inlay style.
    I have a family antique which is your buffets Northern “twin”, although not identical “twin”. They are fraternal, since mine is made of Mahogony! 😉
    Pieces like this are our “grounding pieces” and add that special, ageless charm. I DO hope one day one of my kids will take it as now I would hate it having to live with strangers someday!
    PS. I once learned that these “buffets” are also called “hunt boards”.
    Huge platters of cooked meats from the “hunt” were once plated and displayed and served via this piece!

    Published 22 Aug 23Reply