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Pros & Cons of Open Shelving in Your Kitchen

open shelving kansas city

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When remodeling a kitchen or building one from scratch, you will have a lot of important decisions to make. One of those decisions will be whether your kitchen should have open shelving or not. Likewise, if you just moved into a new home if the kitchen there has open shelving, you might be wondering if you should make any alterations or keep them as is. Here are some of the most significant pros and cons of having open shelving in your kitchen.


Starting off with one of the better points, there is convenience in the fact that you don’t have to lean over as far as to put dishes away. Leaning all of the way into a cabinet to place dishes in the back can be very uncomfortable.

There is also a con here that detracts from the convenience of open kitchen shelves considerably. That is the fact that if you have certain dishes displayed that you don’t use very often, they will collect dust and all kinds of particles as they are fully exposed. That means that you will have to clean such items before using them.


When it comes to the cosmetic value of open shelves, there are both pros and cons. For example, if the colors of all of your dishes happen to match the colors in your kitchen, then open shelving can look great. If your kitchen is mostly white and your dishes are blue, open shelving will look fantastic. On the other hand, if your kitchen is made up mostly of red tones and your dishes all have different colors, it might not look so good. A little mixing and matching can be arty, but if it goes too far, it just looks disorganized and unfocused. Likewise, if you have dishes that are chipped or damaged, be mindful that they will be on full display if placed in open shelving.

Folks that have enclosed shelving in their kitchens can hide their mix-matched dishware behind wooden doors.


One of the biggest cons of open shelving is the fact that with your dishes exposed, they are a lot more liable to be broken. It’s easy for guests who are unfamiliar with the layout to accidentally knock into dishes that are kept on open shelving, sending your favorite ceramics crashing onto the floor. If someone bumps into a wooden cabinet, your dishes will be fine, but when someone bumps into an open shelf, it’s a different story.

The Big Picture

In the end, it will come down to your own personal preferences in choosing between cabinetry and open shelving. If you have matching dishes that are in pristine condition and aren’t bothered if you have to clean some of them once and a while or if some of the dishes get broken, then open shelving might be right for you.

It all depends on how you like things to look and how you prefer to run your kitchen. It depends on how much maintenance you are willing to take on etc. Whichever option you choose, make sure that you have the shelving/cabinetry installed by a professional that you can trust.

Karin Ross Designs

Whether you have decided to have open shelving removed and replaced, or if you wish to have cabinetry removed instead and replaced with open shelving, you need Karin Ross Designs. Have you ever wanted to enjoy the benefits of having a Designer kitchen? When you work with Karin Ross Designs, that’s exactly what you get! Treat yourself, to something nice, with shelving or cabinetry from Karin Ross Designs!

Cabinets, open shelving, we’ve got it all, give Karin Ross Designs a call!