11 Inspiring Open Shelving Ideas for your Kitchen

We’re often quick to assume that all of our kitchen paraphernalia needs to be hidden away in cabinets. Surely it’s far too ugly to be put on show? Perhaps that is true for some kitchen equipment, but not all.

Why not use some open shelving ideas in your kitchen to display some of your favourite kitchen things, as well as other display items to liven up the look of your kitchen.

You only need to have a quick browse in a kitchen shop to see that kitchen equipment can be as good looking as the kitchen itself. Manufacturers are desperate to make their toasters, kettles, pots and pans stylish and available in different colours because they know that the shelf trend is on! Have you taken part in the #shelfie craze?

It is becoming increasingly popular to display certain items on open shelving as part of the kitchen look.

In this article we’ve gathered 11 of those looks that we think are worthy of consideration in any kitchen design as well as sharing advice on getting the most out of your open shelving.

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Integrated wooden open shelving

We love this example of making the shelving a deliberate part of the kitchen by matching the material to the worktops and fitting them as an extension of the wall units.

If your sink faces a wall rather than a window then a narrow shelf above it provides storage/display space as well as interest to your kitchen look.

White open shelving

The use of white shelving in this kitchen to soften the impact of the shelving is combined with white crockery to give a really fresh look.

You can’t go wrong with white accessories as a base. Add in a few colourful items to bring it to life. The layout of three shelves either side of the range cooker gives balance to the look.

Wrap around wooden open shelf

Imagine this kitchen without the shelf for a moment. Still a lovely modern kitchen, but nowhere near as gorgeous. A shelf can be used to really change the look of a kitchen like this.

All it has on it is crockery in white and yellow, but what an impact it has! The fact that it wraps around the entire kitchen helps tie the whole space together.

Small integrated plywood open shelf

This kitchen is completely white apart from the plywood edges to the worktops and the integrated plywood open shelf.

In a similar way to the previous kitchen, without the shelf it would be perhaps a little bland. It dramatically changes the feel of the kitchen, but in this case is only a small addition.

Shelf with artwork

Aside from how stunning this kitchen is in general, the use of shelving to display artwork is inspired.

This could be done in any kitchen with whatever artwork floats your boat, or even photographs of family or holidays. Open shelving doesn’t have to be fulfilling a practical purpose!

Open unit shelving

Without the shadow box style open fronted units in this farmhouse kitchen, the look would be a lot more traditional.

This shelving adds a modern touch and the use of glasses on display seems to bring in a little glamour too. By painting the backs of the units dark they have added a bit of depth to the shelving.

We also love that old rug on the floor, why not!

Rustic shelves with vintage mugs

I know we haven’t chosen a picture of a whole kitchen with this one, but this sort of look would fit a wide variety of kitchen styles.

You could have a whole wall covered with vintage kitchen items or ornaments, sitting on sturdy, reclaimed wood shelves. Perhaps you can start a vintage mug collection obsession of your own?

Alcove open shelving

Dark colours in kitchens (and other rooms) are becoming very popular. This kitchen takes it up a notch, with a very brooding, Victorian feel.

The open shelving here utilises the alcoves either side of the chimney breast wonderfully well. They are very sternly practical but help give the kitchen a bit of height.

Floating open shelving

In stark contrast, this kitchen is wonderfully bright, but the floating shelves use either side of the window help break up some of that white.

The use of wood helps tie into the coastal style of the property.

Low open shelving

Open shelving integrated into the base units add a whole other dimension to the style of your kitchen. In this case, it encourages the farmhouse look with the log store.

They can also be a good place to store your cookbooks (we all have plenty of them right?).

Wall of concrete shelving

We adore this entire wall of concrete shelves holding crockery and glassware. It may be expensive to get this look but the idea of covering a wall in your kitchen with open shelving can be very dramatic if you have the space!

The open shelving revolution is on… don’t just hide away all your carefully curated kitchenware (well, maybe the tupperware!). At the very least, it would be great to finally show off all those cookbooks that you’ve spent hard-earned money on…

Do you already have open shelving in your kitchen? Are you planning something stunning that will outshine the examples above? Get in touch to let us know!