Whether your home has a separate dining area or an open-concept kitchen and eating space, it’s always good to have a place to store your fine dinnerware and extra serving bowls and platters. A credenza should be your go-to furniture item because it can solve your storage issues stylishly.
What is a credenza? Is it a cabinet or a buffet or a hutch? The term might seem a little abstract. Credenza, an Italian term that originated in the 14th century, means “belief” or “confidence.” This furniture piece was used to store food that would be tested for poison, before being served to wealthy noble families. Since then, the credenza has evolved and transformed into a functional serving and storage piece.
While credenzas, also known as sideboards, are similar to hutches and buffet tables, there are some notable differences. Credenzas are lower in height with short legs or no legs at all, and feature sliding doors instead of drawers or pulls. They mostly reside in dining rooms for food and drink service. But this stylish piece can turn up in home bars, offices, dens and studios. As a result, it can be found in various finishes and designs.
Looking for a credenza for your new home? Check out NewHomeSource’s guide for picking the perfect one.
How to Get Started
Before bookmarking swoon-worthy credenzas to elevate your home, here are a few key points to pin down first: Decide which room will feature the credenza, then measure the room to determine where it will fit best. Think about how you’ll use the credenza. In the dining room, you’d use it to serve food during family dinners and store your dinnerware, but in a den, you might keep an old-school record player on top and store your vinyl record collection inside. Finally, figure out how much you can spend, including a warranty and delivery costs. After specs and funds are set aside, think about what design style you’d like. Do you want something modern and Scandinavian or a piece that’s more retro-inspired or a rustic farmhouse-style?
Choose Your Credenza
A stunning credenza priced at $170? Say no more. NSdirect credenza is a petite unit that can be arranged side by side to create a longer credenza look if desired. The tiny but tidy unit spotlights sliding barn doors for a farmhouse flair.
Italian-cool and sliding doors? Look no further than the iconic Linea Italia credenza in cherry wood ($599).
A credenza that’s also a buffet? What a delight. The Atlin Designs walnut credenza ($348) sports two drawers and three doored compartments. The Pemberly Row Scandinavian credenza offers a similar look in feel, but in modern white ($313).
Small equals mighty like this Ashley Luxenford credenza ($319), which is perfect for smaller spots and nooks.
A credenza that moonlights as a desk? Check out the Bush Business credenza desk in white or storm gray ($227+).
Infuse a little off-beat sensibility with mix-and-match wood tones, with the SEI Furniture Harvey multi-tonal credenza ($308), which includes three cabinets and one adjustable shelf each. With hues of oak, burnt oak, tobacco and espresso, the unit offers a deep, earthy color palette.
Craving crisp lines, privacy and storage? The Modway mid-century modern credenza ($332) has sliding doors for closed, accessible storage and three drawers for organization.
The allure of glass furniture? It makes a room seem bigger and deeper since the furniture is transparent. The Sauder Harper Heights Contemporary credenza adds height without bulk on its glass top ($219).
Elevate the atmosphere with metal and wood. The Sterling Home Geometric Harmony credenza ($1,293) packs a bold punch. The geometric shapes are eye-catching with minimalist metal accents.
Some items need to be on display. Stunning glassware, pitchers and art pieces all come to mind. The Sauder Clifford Place credenza ($413), made of recycled walnut, features a slide-out shelf for easy entertaining access. Or the Walker Edison Englewood Mid Century Modern credenza has an open glass shelf and two side cubby units ($228).
Looking for something completely open? The Sauder Adept Storage credenza ($208) has open cubbyhole storage with matching label tags for a totally rustic look.
Want everything on display? Wire mesh doors give the Sauder Boulevard Café credenza a touch of industrial-chic ($570).
Stephanie Valente is a Content Director and Editor in Brooklyn, NY. She’s previously held writing and social media positions at Barkbox, Men’s Journal, and currently works at a full-service advertising agency. She’s a self-confessed home and design enthusiast. Stephanie is an award-winning poet and fiction writer. When she’s offline, you can find her taking a yoga class, running, hanging out with her rescue dog Pepper. Find her on stephanievalente.com.