Combine the timeless beauty of Asian design with a functional piece of furniture such as a buffet or breakfront and you have a classic combination that will enhance any home’s design.
The purpose of a buffet is to provide storage for table linens, dishes and flatware in the dining room. The top provides additional space for serving dishes during a meal or celebration. Many buffets offer specialized features such as a lined silverware drawer, hanging units for stemware, expandable tops or surfaces that can handle heat such as a marble or granite top.
However, if space in your dining area is limited or you need a piece that is multi-functional, a small chest of drawers, hall chest or breakfront will serve the purpose just as well. These items will not have the special features of a buffet but they will provide needed storage and serving space. To protect the finish from damaging hot pots and moisture, place protective pads under the dishes or elevate items on a cake plate or tiered stand.
While buffets and chests come in many different design styles, Chinese design will add a touch of Eastern flair to your dining room regardless of your design preference. The simple lines work well with traditional furniture and the glossy black finish enhances a contemporary space. To achieve this eclectic look, seek out those pieces that feature elements of Chinese design that include:
• Shiny brass accents such as door hardware and hinges.
• A beautiful and glossy black lacquered finish
• Simple lines
• Ornamental accents that include carvings, inlay and other decorative touches
• Artistic designs that celebrate the Chinese culture such as pagodas, cherry blossoms, bonsai trees, birds and flowers
Your buffet can be used as a space to hold additional dishes during a sit down meal or it can be set up to handle a full buffet. For added visual appeal, vary the elevation of dishes by using tiered cake plates or stacked dishes. You can also “hide” bricks, books or boxes under the tablecloth to create different elevations for your food display.
A Chinese buffet is the quintessential multi-tasker. You will enjoy the beauty of its unique cultural design and also appreciate the additional storage and serving space it provides during the holiday season or anytime you are entertaining a large group of people.