Even less than a decade ago, wall mounted kitchen cabinets were the ultimate kitchen storage units while many homeowners looked at open shelves as less sophisticated and country-inspired. However, today they have become a classic and increasingly popular choice for interior designers either during a kitchen remodel or for a newly constructed home. If you have been resisting open shelving, you might want to consider these kitchen shelve ideas for a charming room refresh that won’t cost a small fortune or diminish the potential resale value of your home.

In your quest to give your kitchen decor a robust look, these kitchen shelves ideas should come in handy. Especially if you are looking to display cherished finds and collectibles without taking up too much visual space. So make the most of them and update your kitchen with open shelving for a look that’s on trend yet timeless.

But before you consider these kitchen shelve ideas, here’s a look at the pros and cons of skipping out on kitchen cabinets:


  • Open shelving is much more affordable than kitchen cabinets
  • You can see everything you need in front of you without having to search
  • Open kitchen shelving is less bulky than kitchen cabinets – which will keep your kitchen looking large
  • There’s simply more freedom with open kitchen shelving
  • Open kitchen shelving could also help you keep tidier since its all about the edit


  • Everything you put on open kitchen shelving needs to be styled and edited to keep the look easy on the eye
  • You’ll have to clean everything you place on open kitchen shelving regularly as they’ll gather dust daily
  • Every kitchen has random, one-off pieces like mismatched cups, and they’ll make styling open shelving all the more challenging to get right

A farmhouse style kitchen

farmhouse style kitchen

Open kitchen shelving in a farmhouse style home calls for slabs of distressed wood with a slew of visible veins and a rough and rugged feel. They’ll give your kitchen a room-defining rustic look that will look timeless in appeal for years to come. However, when searching for open kitchen shelve ideas on a tight budget, you should keep in mind that a farmhouse style kitchen upgrade could cost you more than a typical kitchen renovation will, and it will be a bit more challenging to make the look feel natural.

This is because the type of wood that a farmhouse kitchen calls for when creating floating kitchen shelves are different from standard wood used for shelving. But they’ll be worth every penny that you spend on your modern farmhouse kitchen upgrade and will never go out of style.

Corner space open kitchen shelving

corner space open kitchen shelving

If your kitchen floor space is not wide enough to bring in just about any idea when updating your small kitchen, then consider using your kitchen corner space to your advantage when looking for more storage surfaces. Open shelving is best positioned along a wall from end to end and is great for making use of otherwise dead wall space. After all, what better way to use your kitchen corners when considering a kitchen remodel?

You can use those hidden corners for storing less attractive kitchen appliances and place those breathtaking ones at the front for all to see. This will make decorating a small kitchen space just as easy to realize as a large space without having to spend a small fortune.

Convert your cabinet shelving into a pantry

corner space open kitchen shelving

This idea is best for regular kitchen users and large households alike. If you use your kitchen on a regular basis, you more than likely understand the need of a kitchen pantry in a bustling home. A dedicated kitchen pantry will make cooking and storing what you need all the easier as you can easily see what you have to work with and what you need to add to your grocery list while making everything easier to grab and put back.

Even if you want to go for classic kitchen cabinet shelving, you should choose ones with a different look for a modern feel or you could cover each surface with vibrantly patterned and printed contact paper for an inexpensive approach that’ll lend your kitchen needed personality.

Shelves above your kitchen sink

corner space open kitchen shelving

In many homes, there is enough space just above the sink to help you create an airy feel with either a window or open kitchen shelving. So instead of closing off the area with a bulky cabinet, you could opt for well-spaced floating kitchen shelves such as an open shelve with just two wood panels separating it. This will make room for enough space above your kitchen sink for storing items that you don’t want to always have out in the public glare.

Also, keep in mind that items kept on shelves directly above your sink or stovetop are exposed to more humidity on a regular basis. So you should consider the nature of any items you intend on keeping there so nothing gets altered by constant temperature changes.

Remove your kitchen cabinet doors

kitchen cabinets without doors

Removing your kitchen cabinet doors to make way for the shelving inside is one of the simplest and most affordable kitchen shelves ideas 2019 that is easy to put in practice. And in most homes, you may not even need a pro to handle this kind of kitchen shelving project for you as its truly DIY. By properly removing your kitchen cabinet doors, you will your kitchen cabinets a transformed look with ease.

And you can make them look even better with a fresh coat of paint and some printed contact paper lining your kitchen shelves. The wow factor this handy idea will lend your kitchen is that you won’t even need to go through a trying remodel process to completely change the look and feel of your kitchen. Best of all, removing your kitchen cabinet doors is free! But if you are living in a rental. Do keep those kitchen cabinet doors stored so you can easily put them back up when you move.