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What Items to Store on Open Kitchen Shelves

about kitchens and baths open kitchen shelves

Consider how you can stock and show off your open kitchen shelves.

Open kitchen shelving has gained popularity over the years as it offers a blend of functionality and aesthetics. By displaying carefully curated items on open kitchen shelves, you can elevate the visual appeal of your kitchen while keeping essential items within easy reach. However, achieving the perfect balance between style and practicality requires thoughtful consideration of what to store on these shelves. From daily essentials to decorative accents, About Kitchens & Baths has compiled a comprehensive guide to stocking your open kitchen shelving with flair.

Daily Essentials

  • Dishware and Utensils: Start with the basics – plates, bowls, and utensils. Opt for a cohesive set or mix-and-match complementary pieces for a personalized touch. Consider stacking plates and nesting bowls to save space and create visual interest.
  • Mugs and Glasses: Showcase your favorite mugs on open kitchen shelves for morning coffee rituals and glassware for refreshing beverages. Arrange them neatly in rows or group similar items together for a streamlined look.


  • Drinking Glasses: A set of everyday drinking glasses looks great on open kitchen shelves, and storing them in this way keeps them within easy reach. Remember to store them upside down to keep out dust and debris.
  • Highball and Lowball Glasses: Whether you prefer cocktails or mocktails, stylish highball and lowball glasses add a touch of sophistication to your shelving display.
  • Decanters and Carafes: Elevate your bar setup with decorative decanters and carafes. Even when not in use, these vessels serve as eye-catching decor pieces.

Storage Jars and Bins

  • Bulk Ingredients: Store commonly used ingredients like flour, sugar, rice, and pasta in clear glass jars or labeled containers. Not only do they add visual appeal, but they also keep pantry staples organized and accessible.
  • Snacks and Treats: Arrange jars filled with nuts, dried fruits, and snacks for a convenient grab-and-go option. Opt for a mix of sizes and shapes to create visual interest.


  • Cast Iron Skillets and Dutch Ovens: Highlight your prized cast iron cookware, such as skillets and Dutch ovens, on your open shelves. Their rustic charm and durability make them both functional and decorative.
  • Copper Pots and Pans: Add a touch of warmth and elegance with copper pots and pans. Hang them from hooks or display them on open kitchen shelves to showcase their gleaming surfaces.

Spices and Coffee Items

  • Coffee Beans and Accessories: Create a dedicated coffee station with a stylish coffee maker, grinder, and assorted mugs. Display coffee beans in decorative jars or canisters for a pop of color and visual interest.
  • Spice Rack or Shelf: Install a spice rack or dedicate a shelf to spice jars and containers. Arrange them in a tiered organizer or spice carousel for easy visibility and accessibility.

Aesthetic Dinnerware and Cookware

  • Handcrafted Ceramics: Showcase handcrafted ceramics, such as plates, bowls, and serving platters, for a touch of artisanal charm. Their unique shapes and textures add character to your shelving display.
  • Colorful Cookware: Introduce pops of color with vibrant cookware pieces, such as enamel pots and pans. Mix and match hues to create visual contrast and focal points on your open kitchen shelves.

Display Pieces

  • Decorative Plants: Bring life to your open kitchen shelves with potted herbs or succulents. Not only do they add a refreshing touch of greenery, but they also create a sense of tranquility.
  • Vintage Finds: Hunt for unique vintage finds, such as antique scales, retro kitchen gadgets, or quirky collectibles, to add nostalgic charm to your open shelving.


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This entry was posted on Thursday, April 18th, 2024 at 9:17 am. Both comments and pings are currently closed.