• Home Office. Sideboards are hard-working pieces, capable of holding more than just dishes. This one hides a complete office while overhead shelves hide papers in attractive boxes that fit as nicely into the dining room as any office.
• Lounge spot. Row houses with centered fireplaces are tricky spaces to plan. Placing the dining table in front of the (assuming non-working) fireplace gives dining a priority while still allowing room for a lounge-able reading spot.
• An everything room. The farmhouse, expedit-esque shelving unit houses extra dishes as well as magazines and other non-dining related extras.
• Crafting Space. We've featured the talented Leah of More Ways To Waste Time's awesome sewing desk/home office/dining room before, but it's one of the rooms that I keep finding myself coming back to for inspiration because it maximizes the function of the dining room without making it feel cluttered or haphazard.
• Library dining rooms.
What extra roles does your dining room play, and how do you keep it ordered?