The antique sideboard comes in many different forms over the centuries and was originally designed for use in a dining room with your buffet or side server.
Just as the antique dresser developed from a side table, so too did the antique sideboard. In the upper and middle class homes in the mid 1700s, antique side tables and serving tables, were used in the dining room. Later, pedestals on either side of the serving table were introduced to create extra storage or to hold wine bottles or plates, this led to the pedestal sideboard.
This arrangement was not very practical in smaller middle class homes and so the pedestals became incorporated into the serving table and so the cupboard antique sideboard was born.
antique sideboards usually had six legs and were straight, bow fronted or sometimes serpentine fronted. They had a shallow central drawer to hold cutlery and at either end a cupboard or deep drawer which when lined with lead and partitioned to hold wine bottles, is known as a cellarette.
From the 1700s to the 1820s, antique sideboards often had a brass rail fitted along the back with curtains as they were hung from the rail to prevent food from being splashed on the wall when meals were served.
Antique sideboards with pedestal ends remained popular throughout the Victorian era, in many instances a low backboard was added, which in time became higher, and mirrors were incorporated into the design. Eventually the space between pedestals was fully enclosed to provide further cupboard space and this was much more practical.
Also new cupboard designs were made called antique chiffoniers, mainly constructed from Mahogany and Rosewood in smaller proportions with shapely backs.
The Edwardian and Victorian Cabinet makers were more inventive and produced new styles in figured woods such as Walnut or Oak. They produced more decorative sideboards like the antique credenza, a stunning piece of furniture designed to be very lively with the use figured woods and brass fittings. It takes its name from a 15th century Italian buffet and is distinguished by the bow front or serpentine shaped shelving which flanks its central cupboard, often with delightfully carved floral designs, sometimes with a marble top or mirrored back.