A sideboard consisting of two enclosed box-like pedestals, usually with cupboards or drawers, and a central flat serving top containing a cutlery drawer. This middle section is screwed to the pedestals to hold the piece in position. Sideboards usually have a back of some kind. Early 19th century backs were often simple brass supports, as in the traditional Sheraton sideboard. From about 1820, timber backs became more common, generally simple in form to begin with (with a triangular pediment) but becoming more ornate, often carved with Regency scrolls, foliage and other decorative devices. By the Victorian age, sideboard backs often consisted of large plate glass mirrors in a polished frame, usually carved in the manner of the Rococo revival
During the Regency period from about 1800 the pedestals were often slightly tapering in shape, and were somewhat higher than the middle serving board. Frequently the pedestals were surmounted by a pair of urn-shaped knife boxes. Subsequently, the pedestals assumed more conventional rectangular form and were of the same height as the middle section.
A wine cooler or sarcophagus was frequently placed on the floor between the two pedestals. more...The pedestals themselves often contained cellaret drawers, with divisions for holding wine bottles, and sometimes a compartment for a chamber pot very useful for those long dinner parties after the ladies had retired to the drawing room.
Learn about Sideboard
There are several distinct types of sideboard. The Georgian sideboard was a long narrow table, fitted with cutlery drawers and cellaret cupboards, used as a serving table in dining rooms. Most examples are at least five feet long.
Although sideboards date from the mid-18th century, their development is usually associated with the designs of Sheraton. Sideboards may be straight fronted, curved at either end, or sometimes have a recessed breakfront. The latter was partly to lighten the effect of a large piece of furniture and partly, writes Sheraton, 'to secure the butler from the jostles of the other servants'.
The central portion of the sideboard, beneath the long drawer, was usually arched with semicircular lunettes, either carved or often strung. The legs were sometimes turned, but more generally were tapered, often standing on spade or block feet. Georgian sideboards always have six legs one at each corner, one on either side of the central recess. Four legged sideboards were not introduced until the second decade of the 19th century. more...Sideboards were usually made of well-figured mahogany or, in Australia, cedar or beefwood veneer, though very few colonial examples appear to have survived. They were sometimes cross banded, strung and inlaid with decorative panels of contrasting timber.
Another type of sideboard appeared in the late 19th century, based more or less on the Renaissance revival forms associated with designers Talbert and Eastlake. It consisted of a two-door cupboard, usually panelled and carved, with a mirrored back, containing shelves and a hutched or overhanging cornice, supported by turned or carved columns.
There are many variants, but the lines and angles were much squarer, handles were often of pressed metal alloy, and by the time the sideboard reached its full Edwardian flowering, it often boasted broken or swan-neck pediments, reeded and fluted decorations, and shallow machine-made carvings of shells, rosettes and other foliage.
The style continued to be made in mahogany, oak, maple, pine or cedar until after the first world war. During the 1920s, and under the influence of the modern movement, furniture forms became much simpler and less cluttered, taking on the characteristics pioneered by the Arts and Crafts designers a third of a century before. It should always be remembered that it may take a generation before an original design, breaking with tradition, becomes fully established in popular taste.
From around 1900 the size of sideboards began to decrease, in order to fit the smaller dining rooms of the day, although this example would still require a substantial room to display it properly.
An early colonial cedar double pedestal sideboard, circa 1835, designed in the manner of Thomas Sheraton, the rectangular top above three frieze drawers in fiddle back cedar with replacement ring drop handles, the pedestals each with a single panel door cu
William IV mahogany double pedestal sideboard, c. 1830, the triangular shaped back with moulded scrolling ends, above an inverted breakfront top, a long central beaded drawer flanked by two arch panelled cupboard doors with dummy drawers to the top, raised
An early Victorian cedar/mahogany twin pedestal sideboard, circa 1840s, the breakfront sideboard in rich dark red to purple tones with a framed book end veneer serpentine back, a slightly extended stepped top above three reeded frieze drawers, two cupboard
An Australian Colonial cedar, twin pedestal sideboard c.1860. NSW, Hunter Valley region. The sideboard has three drawers over twin pedestal bases and constructed with Germanic influence, with full cedar lining to drawers and backboards. The bases have shie
A 19th century Anglo-Indian teak pedestal sideboard with a foliate pierced splashback, above a reverse breakfront top with three vine and grape carved drawers and two starburst panelled doors, 167.5 x 123.5 x 57 cm.
An Australian cedar pedestal sideboard, circa 1840, the triangular pediment back with foliate s-scrolled decoration to either end above a rectangular top over three drawers with rounded cushion fronts, the pedestals with tapering raised panels, enclosing s
An Australian full cedar pedestal sideboard, circa 1830, the scrolled back with carved fan and applied roundel decoration above a rectangular top with one long and two short half round drawers, the two pedestals with raised panels between carved feather de
A rare Australian full cedar pedestal sideboard of small proportions Circa 1835, circa 1835 the c-scrolled gallery back with central grape and leaf carved decoration above two stepped drawer compartments and an inverted top, supported on two tapering pedes
An Australian Colonial Flamed cedar sideboard, circa 1840, the carved back board with restrained double scrolls backing a rectangular top with moulded double edge above three frieze drawers with convex fronts, each pedestal with architectural pylon panel d
A large rare fine quality New Zealand colonial kauri mirror back twin pedestal sideboard with plain and mottled kauri, the base with three drawers and two panelled cupboard doors, the back with full turned baluster column mouldings, three bevelled mirrors
A fine early Australian cedar double pedestal sideboard, circa 1840, designed in the manner of Thomas Sheraton, the simple rectangular top over a central drawer in fiddleback cedar and flanked by similar smaller drawers with replacement brass ring drop han
An Australian colonial flamed cedar sideboard, circa 1840, the carved back board with restrained double scrolls backing a rectangular top with moulded double edge above three frieze drawers with convex fronts, each pedestal with architectural pylon panel d
An Australian Art Deco dining suite, circa 1930, retailed through Ackman's Ltd. Fitzroy, Melbourne, the suite in walnut veneer comprising a magnificent table featuring a floral carved twin pedestal base together with two original leaves and four matching c
A fine early 19th century Australian cedar pedestal sideboard, NSW, the well figured Thomas Hope scrolled back with stylised fan and lotus decoration above three panels with nulled decoration above a rectangular top, moulded edge above three cushion moulde
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