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Kitchen shelving ideas you'll love

Whether you’ve got a large farmhouse kitchen or a small galley space, a gorgeous kitchen often comes down to storage. After all, clutter can ruin even the most exquisitely designed space.

If you’re wondering how to make the most out of your kitchen storage, we’ve got plenty of innovative options and ideas to help upgrade your kitchen. It’s not all about cupboard space, either. Shelving can add both style and functionality to every kitchen, adding brightness and light to your chosen design. So, without further ado, we’ve got everything you need to know about adding ingenious kitchen shelving to your space below.

Kitchen shelf ideas

Planning the perfect kitchen storage is essential. From crockery and cutlery to pots and pans, most kitchens need to fit in many different items to be useable. While many of us opt for traditional kitchen units and cupboards, shelving can be handy when it comes to kitchen storage. Shelving helps you quickly see and access the things you need, making your space more efficient and enjoyable.

However, planning your kitchen shelf ideas can be a minefield. It’s easy for shelving to look cluttered, particularly if you opt for open or display shelves. Before you start putting together your kitchen shelf ideas, it’s a good idea to do a stock-take of what you have in your kitchen. You might want to prioritise what you use most regularly, so you can plan where to put it within easy reach.

Think about the aesthetics of the items as well. Some things are essential but won’t look right on display. Other items could be decanted into attractive jars to improve the visual appeal (pasta, rice, and other dry pantry items are ideal for this). Consider your overall design preferences, and get creative with how you store and display your kitchen essentials.

Considering the types of kitchen shelving

Microwave shelf

Ah, the microwave. Handy for heating up soup and forgotten cuppas, but no so great for countertop space. Putting your microwave on a shelf is perfect for keeping your kitchen clutter-free, freeing up valuable space on your worktops.

Think about incorporating your microwave shelf above or near your oven. That way, you’ll have everything to hand when whipping up culinary delights (or preparing a quick mid-week meal).

Kitchen unit shelves

Not all kitchen shelving ideas have to be open or on show. Your built-in kitchen shelving is worth thinking about, especially if you need a lot of storage or you have a compact space. Consider incorporating multi-height options suitable for storing more oversized items (like your pots, pans, and small appliances) as well as space for mugs and glassware within your kitchen cabinets.

There are plenty of innovative built-in kitchens shelving options too. From slimline shelves for spices to hidden compartments for additional space, it’s possible to make your kitchen unit shelves work even harder for the area you have. Discover our intelligent storage solutions for inspiration on creating a kitchen shelving system that works for you.

Pantry shelving

You don’t need a separate area for a dedicated pantry space (although we can dream of a perfectly organised walk-in pantry). Built-in pantry cupboards are a great way to store your essential ingredients, especially if you’re limited in space.

Our Traditional Larder and Larder Blumotion options are ideal for this, with a spice rack, wine rack, and drawers to keep your pantry items close to hand. They’re hidden behind seamless kitchen cabinets, with pull out shelving to easily access your ingredients and grocery items. With plenty of space to organise your pantry products, built-in pantry cupboards are the ideal choice for busy kitchens.

If you have a walk-in pantry, there’s even more opportunity to get creative with your kitchen shelving. Discover our Retro Trends guide for more tips for incorporating this feature into your kitchen space.

Kitchen corner shelving

Move over, wall units. Open shelving adds interest to every kitchen and can make compact spaces feel airier and brighter. While open shelving is commonly found on wall lengths, it’s possible to add them to your corner areas too. Corner shelving makes excellent use of this untapped space, especially if there isn’t room for traditional wall units. You could even use corner shelving between units or on your island to add interest and extra space.

Use yours to store decorative crockery, cooking ingredients in attractive jars or recipe books. You could even create a vertical kitchen herb garden with fresh herbs on hand in an easily accessible area.

If you’re not keen on open shelves, look for corner kitchen cabinets that add extra space without compromising your kitchen units’ look.

Kitchen floating kitchen shelves

Floating kitchen shelves are an exquisite option for both contemporary and classic spaces. To keep it feeling clutter-free, consider choosing simple crockery or matching storage jars for items you plan to have on display. Matching dinnerware and serve-ware often look attractive on display alongside recipe books, pot plants, and ornaments.

Your floating shelves can lend themselves to extra storage beneath too. Hang mugs, utensils, or other small items on hooks underneath for a space-saving solution.

Under-sink shelf

Forget about losing bottles of cleaning products and spare sponges underneath your kitchen sink. Look for innovative shelving solutions that fit around your pipework, making it easy to access your everyday cleaning essentials (or whatever else you store beneath the kitchen sink).

Pull-out shelving and carousels are a real benefit in this often-used area, meaning you’ll never have to scrabble at the back of your cupboards for that spare bottle of dish soap. There are standalone shelving options available, but these are not always as sturdy or as practical as they could be. Built-in options are often the better choice, particularly if you can incorporate them in your new kitchen design from the outset.

Open shelving

Open shelving is well-suited to both minimalist and rustic spaces. Whether you choose understated floating shelves or a bold industrial look, open kitchen shelves add ambience and airiness to every room.

As well as adding style, they’re a functional kitchen storage option too. Display attractive serve-ware or favourite mugs and glassware to keep your kitchen feeling cosy. It’s worth putting some thought into what you will have on display, as these will contribute to the overall look and feel of your space. Avoid placing items like appliances or mismatched crockery on display if you can. It’ll help your kitchen feel less cluttered.

It’s worth matching your kitchen shelving to your overall design to keep your space feeling coherent. You could choose open shelves in the same shade as your cabinets, as demonstrated in our exquisite Winchester Dove Grey kitchen design.

Rustic kitchen shelves

Whether you choose an integrated plate rack or gorgeous open shelves, keeping aesthetic items on display is a mainstay of rustic design. Shelving adds interest to your kitchen, bringing a warm and inviting feel that elevates the space. That doesn’t mean you need to compromise on exquisite design, though.

Your rustic kitchen shelves can look as elegant as they do classic. If you opt for open shelves, pick natural wood materials or neutral paint colours. You could use chunky metal fixings to enhance your rustic design.

Rustic kitchens often lend themselves well to shelving display cabinets, with glass panels and subtle lighting emphasising the items within. Our timeless Dunham Sky shelving units look striking with glassware, recipe books and attractive crockery on show. Display shelving works particularly well in a farmhouse or country-style kitchen, adding a timeless ambience to your space.

Industrial kitchen shelves

Whether you prefer a bold industrial look or a practical design, the industrial trend is the perfect choice for those who love an avant-garde modern aesthetic. Shelving is essential in industrial kitchens, making these spaces both practical and stylish.

Wire shelving is a popular choice, along with rustic wood and chunky metal fixings. Consider putting your small appliances, like mixers or blenders, on show in your industrial kitchen; this look lends itself well to putting your practical items on display.

Think about incorporating other kitchen shelving ideas into your industrial space too. Island shelving and hidden compartments, like in our Tribeca Graphite kitchen, look especially striking. Think about mixing and matching your textures to create an industrial feel, too: metals, natural woods, and manufactured materials look exquisite when layered together.

Pull-out shelves

When it comes to storage, it’s all in the details. Ultimately, kitchens should be functional spaces and keeping everything you need easily accessible is a significant part of that. Think about intelligent storage solutions and ingenious shelving to make your kitchen work for your requirements and lifestyle. It might be worth thinking about things that don’t work in your current space, particularly if you find yourself struggling to reach certain items.

Pull-out shelves are perfect for maximising cupboard usage. There are plenty of options available, from slimline options next to your cooker (perfect for oven trays and utensils) to large larders for storing your essential ingredients. Consider features that make your cupboards even easier to access, like our innovative iMove pull-down shelving unit. This makes it easy to reach high shelves without resorting to steps or a stool.

Choosing your dream kitchen from Magnet

Ready to create your perfect kitchen space? Plan all the storage you need alongside an exquisitely designed kitchen with our free kitchen planner tool. Or, book a free consultation with a dedicated design expert. We’ll walk you through the process to help you create something unique.

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