Open Shelves

Picture 96PhotoCredit: Craft and Creativity Photostream on Flickr

I’m going to replace the upper cupboard on the right with some open shelves, because I’m taking the cupboard underneath out to fit in a dishwasher – Oh yes it will be mine! ๐Ÿ˜‰

On a more practical side, I think it’ll make the room look wider and I’ll have the chance to have lots of pretty display kilner jars and my Emma Bridgewater bits and bobs. I’m just slightly worried as to what’s going to happen to the wall when we take the cupboard down, we have some seriously dodgy plaster in this house and the whole lot could come down.ย  But it’s a chance I’m willing to take.

I’ve been hunting around on the web and Flickr has been a great source of inspiration.ย  Lillian Day’s photostream has some wonderful photos of her beautiful home.ย  Look how she has created these open look from some painted Ikea shelves.

shelves2Photo Credit: Lillian Day’s Photostream on Flickr

On the left hand side of my kitchen we have two upper cupboards which have some really ummm stunning 1980’s faux stained glass in them – nice! So I have considered getting them re-glazed or just removing the doors altogether and painting the insides of the cupboards but on a day to day basis that might just scratch really easily?ย  But these shelves from House Dreams on Flickr I think they have had this treatment and they look gorgeous

Picture 84 Photo Credit: House Dreams’ Photostream on Flickr

What do you think about open shelves do you like them? Are they practical?

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  1. I like them if you have nice dishes and glasses etc…I looks nice, you probably only put on shelves what you really need. I like the idea of painted shelves. Have a wonderful Sunday!

  2. We have some open shelves in the kitchen which we added for more space to display some pretty’s, they are great, but they do get dusty. I would reglaze the doors as dusting would be a nightmare.

  3. I have open shelves and not only do they make everything way more accessible – you get the opportunity to show off all your awesome stuff. The dust is no more problematic than with cupboards for me.

  4. Kathy – I’ll take a picture when they’re done ๐Ÿ™‚
    Janet – so pleased you love them to as you are a design diva x
    Heather – know what you’re saying which is why I’ve been umming and ahhhing about it. But hopefully they’ll be ok ๐Ÿ™‚
    Madhouse – thanks for the advice, I’m still deciding I’m guessing it’s going to come down to how much it costs at the moment.
    Emily – Me too I’ve never owned a dishwasher and I can’t wait to!! ๐Ÿ™‚
    Kim – Glad you’ve loved yours, and that the dust isn’t a massive problem x

  5. I think open shelves look great but not if I am responsible for keeping them tidy I am a bugger for popping leaflets, bits & bobs anywhere and everywhere. Loving the look. Dishwasher, must have, would die without, live in fear of it breaking or running out of tablets! Recommend one with a cutlery tray at the top rather than a basket as you can loads more in mine is Miele as they were the only make that did for ages, they’ve just come out of copyright for the design and I think Bosch or Hotpoint now also have models with a cutlery drawer/tray rather than a basket. Cx

  6. Claire thanks so much for the tips on buying a dishwasher. I will be asking advice because I’ve never owned one and I want to get a good one x

  7. Great post, I’ve never thought about open shelves, but love the idea! I think this may be happening in my kitchen very soon as I hate my cupboards with a passion.
    I don’t think my hubby’s going to be too pleased when I make the suggestions ๐Ÿ™‚ I feel a kitchen make over coming on……

  8. I think they look gorgeous but I’d be worried about more breakages that way – especially as I’d want my best items to be out there on show. The dust would be an issue for me too, our old victorian house is prone to a lot of dust!

  9. after doing this in 3 different kitchens, I have finally learned my lesson: no open shelves in the kitchen. If they are near (not even over or next to, but near) a stove, you will get some kind of cooking grease/dust goop on them unless you have a wind tunnel of a fan over your cooktop.

    If they are far from your cooktop, you get dust. Also, they likely then far from where you will use them often, making them likely not a great location.

    Regardless, if you don’t use every single thing on your open shelving often enough, they get dusty or cooking grease/dust combo, which is super hard to clean off if it builds up for a while (like on on a cake stand).

    Another thing: whatever’s on those open shelves is on display. Make sure it looks good on display. =)

    They CAN work, but be very very careful. I’m into glass doors or just plain old closed doors. Maybe your kitchen is a good fit for open shelves, or you’re determined =)

  10. I don’t think I could handle it, but I do love the look of them. And I love those glasses in the last picture. Maybe I’d feel the need to display them if I had them, but I think I’d still just opt for glass front doors.

  11. I have some open shelves which I love – they are tall slim metal catering style ones, thus no problems with dust. I have some posh teatowels from Heal’s that have magnets attached, so if any part of the shelves are looking unsightly, I attach my posh teatowel to the sheld above and obscure the mess. I am sneaky!

  12. I took the doors off some of my cupboards and it improved the look staight away. Anyone know what kind of paint I should use to tart the shelves up a bit. I presume it’ll have to be some sort of specialist paint with them being covered wood (MDF I think???).

    1. Hi Tamsin,
      If they are actual wood you should be able to use gloss paint, but if you have laminate like me, cupboard paint is really good. Crown and Dulux make it and you can get it in a few colours. Would love you see yours when they are done ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. I love open shelving. I took the doors off some of my cupboards and painted the inside white and it looked really fresh and open but Hubby didn’t like it so I put them back on.

    I have really limited storage in my kitchen so all of my crockery is out on an open tabletop and I find because I use it all the time it doesn’t get too dusty. I just give the table a wipe down every so often as I wipe down my counters.

    I also have open shelving in my pantry (which I’ve just posted about) and again it’s not too much of a bother to wipe things down every so often.

    I do know that my shelves where the things are purely decorative don’t get wiped down often enough because I don’t think about it.

  14. Bit late (came from Down came the cupboard post), but… I love open shelving. We took down a bunch of rather ghastly pine cupboards when we moved in and replaced them with open shelves. My MIL isn’t so keen as she can see all our clutter. We have hooks on the bottom ones and hang cups and utensils from them. We also have smaller shelves on the other side (which were already there when we bought the house) which house all the herbs – and some very nice little espresso cups we got as a wedding gift. Again, the only issue is they can look cluttered easily (I’m quite fond of clutter though, so am not bothered).
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