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Using an Etagere Shelf for Kitchen Storage & Display

I will show you how using an etagere shelf in the kitchen for storage and display makes perfect sense.

Sometimes when you are purging you start to rethink the way your space is setup. Once everything is out and exposed, you see things with fresh eyes and new ideas start to trickle in…

That’s exactly what happened when I tackled our kitchen organization during week two of my ten week organizing challenge; quite a few weeks back. I took a careful look around at everything and decided that our old tall narrow china cabinet wasn’t working for us anymore.

I mean, it was working in the sense that it held our very special dishes.

But it wasn’t working in that it was a bit small for that space. And it didn’t display things as well as I would like. And, frankly, I was just ready for a change.

But I wasn’t after just another china cabinet; I’ve been hankering after the perfect spot to use a beautiful Etagere Style shelf for a long time now and I’ve finally discovered it…

Open shelving unit just off the kitchen.

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When you use the word Etagere, it automatically sounds fancy, but really it just means…

It’s hard to even find any images of what was in this corner before, because I generally avoided taking pictures of it. It’s not that our little tall narrow china cabinet had anything wrong with it, but it just wasn’t a standout feature. It also wasn’t very photogenic with all the glare from the glass. But I did manage to dig up one image from the archives…

The small cabinet with glass doors and small shelves.

And that same corner of our kitchen, now…

Open shelving unit with wood and metal.

Quite a difference this open shelving unit has made…

The shelving unit before and a shelving unit after.

Much better, right?

The great thing about selecting a new piece now and then is that you can actually chose something that is sized exactly right for your space.

The hubs and I measured and remeasured and I viewed all kinds of sizes online before finding the perfect shelf for our little corner. I wanted it to be tall; to have five shelves for display; to have a crowned top and wide bottom; and to be the perfect width and height (not too wide or deep as I didn’t want it to feel like it was taking over this thoroughfare).

As it turned out, the Amberly Etagere by August Grove from Wayfair.ca was the perfect find!

There are plates and baskets on the shelf.

Blue and white plus turquoise dishes on the shelf.

We’ve had many of these dishes for years now; some since our wedding. Others, we’ve collected along the way. The blue and white china is a garage sale find; and the Mexican blue rimmed glasses are a favourite as they remind me of vacations in Mexico.

There are soft sage green bowls, plates and glass with a cobalt blue rim.

Up close shot of blue and white dishes on the shelf.

I love the way the dishes and display objects pop against the open but solid feel of this shelf…

There are wooden cutting boards and a wooden bowl filled with lemons on the shelf.

Soft green dishes are on the open shelving unit beside the lemons.

I’m storing table linens and napkins in the first big basket; and appliance accessories in the lower basket. I always love using baskets when styling shelves; I feel that they add some calm for the eye amongst all the accessories (or, in the case, amongst all the kitchenware).

Woven baskets on the shelf.


What do you think?

Isn’t this open shelving unit a great way to display you favourite kitchenware and dishes? I think so… I know I’ll use things more now, as well, instead of having them hidden behind the glass.


Do you want to incorporate a beautiful Etagere style shelf in your kitchen?

Or dining room?

Or somewhere else in your home?

I’ve collected some of my favourites for you!



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  1. Enjoy your blog! Another great option is one from Walmart. It’s from the Better Homes and Garden collection called River Crest, under 150 dollars here in US.

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