A buffet or side board is such a versatile piece of furniture and can be used to bring in some personality to a space and create a focal point.
I like to start with a 'hero' piece and style around that. In the first example I've used a large mirror and I've placed it off centre as I like to have asymmetrical balance and use other decor pieces to create a cohesive flow. In the 2nd example I've used a piece of artwork as the hero and based the decor piece to suit the print.
I like to choose decor pieces of varying heights and shapes to create balance and interest. Coffee table books not only look great, they are the perfect layering item for underneath the smaller decor pieces like candles and ceramics. Cluster smaller pieces together and use vases with fresh or faux greenery of flowers to give it that relaxed lived in feel.