When Athena Calderone approached the design of her Brooklyn kitchen there was one key style decision she needed to make during the renovation: how to affix the free-floating marble shelf. Inspired by a similar version in Joseph Dirand’s Parisian kitchen, Calderone knew she wanted to replicate the open kitchen shelves in her own townhouse, too. But this bracket-free floating marble look would need to be supported with braced walls which meant addressing the stone application early in the process.
Today, the heavily veined marble floating shelf is a striking feature in Calderone’s kitchen allowing for her signature curation of vintage objects, sculptures, and eras to be on display. It’s in this juxtaposition of old and new, modern and antique, soft and harsh that brings your visual language to life, allowing the viewer’s eye to joyfully dance around the space.
If you’re wondering how to style open kitchen shelves that fuse the practical (bowls, plates, wooden spoons) with the pretty (carvings, lamps, mirrors), then keep reading for our top five tips to get started. But remember, experimentation is key, let your curiosity guide you, and above all, enjoy the process—you never know where it will take you next and that’s the exciting part!