|Antique Victorian period sideboard. Photo by Hannah Manning|
for Materials Unlimited.
Furniture of the Victorian period has been described as oversized and overly decorated. While this might be true, some of the more massive forms of furniture during this period served a purpose and provided a point of view.
The sideboard in Victorian America was the quintessential entertaining piece. Positioned at the center of the dining room, the sideboard was meant to display food and wares while entertaining. Its oversized design served multiple purposes as well with drawers to hold silverware, cabinet doors to hold porcelain tablewares, and the massive scale to show masculinity. The dining room is often called a masculine room, as this is where the male provider shows his worth in both food and status, and this is clearly reflected in the Victorian era sideboard.