Stuck on the idea that a sideboard, credenza or other low storage piece is the thing to add to a dining room to make it look, feel and work like a dining room? Though a lovely credenza or cabinet might make for an obvious furniture choice in the dining room, it's not the only item that can help fill a dining space and complement your table and chairs. If you simply don't need that much more storage or are looking for a different look, peruse these nine real-life dining rooms that feature some fun furniture alternatives.
Though poking around the additional photos of these rooms from some of our house tours might show that the homeowners went with a credenza, cabinet or sideboard in some of these spaces, we think you'll still find inspiration in these photos below — where the combination of a beautiful dining set is complemented not by an expected storage piece, but by something else entirely.
Top image: A lovely compact bar cart becomes a cute drink station in the dining room of Hillary & Michael's Refined Roost.
A thick upholstered bench with lots of pillows proves extra seating looks just as good as extra storage in Amy & Todd's Mod Chicago Home.
Tucked away in the corner of the tiny dining room in Heather & Eric's Cozy Victoria Cottage is a dual-function solution: a speaker brings sweet tunes to dinner parties and holds up a lovely green plant.
Eric & Kellie's Pencil Factory Loft dining room isn't without any side storage, but we also loved the slim, perfect-for-a-small-space addition of a ladder for displaying magazines that we spotted.
Why not go vertical, with a tall, open bookcase like in Lauren & Stiles' Southwest Bohemian Homestead. Still storage but less expected than a sideboard at the same height as a dining table.
Why add a sideboard when you can add in some serious wow-factor with an oversized, leaning piece of art? As spotted in Sarah's Modern Global Loft.
Who says you've got to put anything against a wall at all? Why not hang something on it and over a dining table? A particularly powerful solution against boring dining rooms spotted in Brian & Brad's Artfully Modern Apartment.
Not everyone can do this, of course, but if you've got a spot for a window seat instead of something heavy like a credenza, as spotted in Joey's Stylist To The Stars Digs, you've really got a fresh look.
There's a lot going on in the dining room of Erin & Nathan's Collaboratively Creative Bungalow, but we're adoring the addition of a piano.
Do you have something in your dining room that's not storage like a credenza or sideboard? Do you have something unique that's really complementing your dining set and making a space that sings? Let us know what you've done to really make your dining room unique to you!
(Image credits: Alexis Buryk; Julia Brenner; Andie Powers; Lauren & Stiles' Southwest Bohemian Homestead; Kim Lucian; Arthur Garcia-Clemente; Bridget Pizzo; Bridget Pizzo)