Make it Modern: New Uses for China Cabinets

YCTP4317Whether you call them china cabinets, breakfronts or buffets, these large, glass-fronted cabinets have been a staple in dining rooms since the 1920’s. However, with the advent of modern informal home decor and today’s popular open concept floor plans, formal dining room spaces–and thus china cabinets–are less popular. A large cabinet displaying seldom-used china…well, that doesn’t work for everyone, especially younger homeowners.  I don’t know anyone in their thirties who displays china, do you?

photo credit: Kelly Beall/Design Crush
photo credit: Kelly Beall/Design Crush

So…what do we do with these china cabinets? They’re beautiful furniture pieces, and readily available at estate sales (and Michael Taylor At Home!) at really reasonable prices. We’ve got some innovative ideas! The 1930’s-era china cabinet (pictured above) has been painted black and is used as a fabulous dry bar/liquor cabinet. Great for informal entertaining, right?

photo credit: stylecaster.com
photo credit: stylecaster.com

Shoe gals…imagine displaying your collection of high heels in a pretty display cabinet rather than hiding them behind closet doors. This solves a storage problem in a fun way…why not turn a china cabinet into a bedroom or walk-in closet display piece?

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Not a china collector, but love colorful vintage glassware like Pyrex and Fire King? Create eye-catching kitchen displays that you can change with the seasons. The informal glassware is a fun juxtaposition with the more formal furniture style of the cabinet.

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Here a more narrow cabinet is used to display a wedding dress. What a wonderful way to preserve and enjoy this bridal gown…who says you have to put it away in a box? Love this idea!

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This china cabinet serves as a wardrobe in a baby’s nursery…gorgeous, right? With a painted white finish, upper shelves removed and a small hanging bar added, it elevates a beautiful baby girl’s wardrobe and adds storage to the nursery.

photo credit: cindysfracturedfairytales.blogspot.com
photo credit: cindysfracturedfairytales.blogspot.com

Love Christmas? Us, too! Display your Christmas Village collection in a china cabinet with doors removed…a coat of red paint and some battery-powered lights make this the perfect backdrop for these tiny houses.

photo credit: Ivy Clad
photo credit: Ivy Clad

Here’s another good one…use a china cabinet in place of a book shelf to store books and display family photos. The glass front doors will keep your books dust-free!

photo credit: Better Homes & Gardens
photo credit: Better Homes & Gardens

Here a china cabinet has been transformed into a wine bar. The tall shelves have plenty of storage for bottles and glasses. Great for parties!

Need a china cabinet? Come see our extensive selection in a variety of styles at Michael Taylor At Home this week. We’re open Thurs.-Sat., 10-5 at 478 Allied Drive.

My Best,

Michael Taylor and Company

P.S. Watch our Facebook for news of our upcoming art show and fabulous new merchandise in-store!