The Kitchen Is The New Living Room: Three Ways To Style Open Shelving

We’re constantly designing open floor plans for our clients, the kitchen being the center point. We love it - no walls, no problem! For our clients who like to entertain they may never leave the kitchen at all. It’s the heart of the home and let’s face it the kitchen has become the new living room. While you’re cooking behind the stove, your guests can socialize with you behind the island. It’s a space where everyone wants to hang out. In kitchen designs today the open shelving has replaced cabinetry, which is both a blessing and a curse. It’s easy for them to get cluttered, however they also allow you to create personality in your home. Start with a blank slate and tell your story. Now that the kitchen is the new living room, try incorporating family photos, old books or treasures from your travels. Yes, we understand they need to be functional too, so throw the everyday plates and cups in the mix. 

To help you get creative and inspired in your home we’ve styled our own kitchen shelves with three different personalities. We’d love hear which you are more drawn to!


When we styled these shelves we were channeling all the California mid century vibes. We threw in some local art that we’ve collected over the years, some vintage books and baskets from the flea markets. We mixed in some blush pink teak bowls from our travels to Bali. We added some vintage jars to add a pop of color and of course a small palm tree to complete the look!



This one is for all of our old souled mamas out there who love to shop at antique stores and thrift shops. You thrive on culture and history. You have some old black and white family photos and grandma’s china, mixed in with your existing plates and mugs. Mixing old with new is always okay in our book! Throw in that souvenir or vintage art from your trip to Europe. Finish this look off with gold or brass accents to catch the eye and warm up your space! This look is undoubtedly a conversation starter.



If you like things clean and simple with just a subtle pop of color this look is for you! We love the white on white look, but “believe” us, mixing it up with different textures of white and a pop of color makes this look unique. We’ve added our white plates and bowls, but we’ve also thrown in some white mugs (with black accents), as well as some clear glassware to add texture. In this look, you’ll notice subtle pops of color, such as the vintage books and baskets. These pieces accent the centerpiece of your display - a piece that scream color, but also has a place in your heart. For us, we chose to display a blue dragon from our travels to Argentina. He symbolizes protection and is the perfect accent in this space!


If you have open shelves in your kitchen or somewhere in your home, play around with these personalities or create your own! We’d love to see and hear what you came up with!

Love, The Sisters

Susanna WardComment