Beautiful Bistro Shelves

Brass and glass bistro shelves have definitely been having a moment in design recently. Think of the romance of an old back bar with tarnished brass hardware filled with bottles of tipsy goodness.

The Bofinger in Paris just oozes old world charm doesn’t it?? I think this is part of the appeal of bistro shelves – they can be old brass or sleek chrome.

Bofinger Brasserie Paris Bistro Shelves
Bofinger Brasserie, Paris

On the sleek end is Bar 228 at Le Meurice in Paris, designed by Phillipe Starck.

paris-le-meurice-le-bar-portrait bistro shelves
Bar 228 at Le Meurice, Paris

These looks have been popping up in the home for a few years. Open shelving in general has been popular and these metal and glass versions are an extension of that trend. Many usually say they don’t like open shelving because a) they have to keep them organized and b) they need cleaning. This is all true. But generally the most used items in a room – glassware, etc – are washed regularly anyway.

Last week, I wrote about stone walls and shared this never realized basement pub project that I had designed. One of the challenges of the space was the small basement window on right and how it stopped any chance of installing upper shelves or cabinets (unless of course it was removed entirely). Inspired by Katie LeClercq’s shelves above, I designed the bistro shelves to be ceiling mounted in front of the window. The light from the window would make glassware sparkle! The ceiling mount would allow the space on the counter not to be impeded by the hardware.

Linda Merrill basement pub bistro shelves 2

Linda Merrill basement pub bistro shelves

With the design of my Dream Home, I so wanted to include bistro shelves somewhere. I considered them for the kitchen but I already had open wood shelving, so it was just too much. I also tried in the mudroom (concept shown below).

Linda Merrill Dream Home Muddroom Bistro Shelves

But they just didn’t make any kind of real sense since I didn’t really need to have lots of open storage. I needed closed storage. Below is where I landed.

Linda Merrill Decorative Surroundings Dream Home 2021 Mudroom laundry Pantry wall

I share this only to say that just because we want something and that it’s trendy and quite beautiful – it may not actually work in a space and sometimes hard decisions need to be made. No bistro shelves in the Dream Home!

I’m sharing below some links to resources for bistro shelves. (Please note that these links contain affiliate codes which means that if a purchase is made, a small commission is paid with no additional cost to the buyer. This helps support this blog. Thank you!)

Companies which specialize in bistro shelves include Amuneal, Wahoo DesignsPalmer Industries and Urban Archeology. Some of these firms only work for members of the trade, others will work with homeowners. I am always happy to help if needed!


4 thoughts on “Beautiful Bistro Shelves”

  1. I love your images, and are tempted to use them sometime in the future. They certainly add a sparkle to the room, thats one of the things I love about them !

  2. I adore the look of bistro shelves for all the reasons you mentioned! But yes, sometimes they are not the right answer for a design 🙂 Thanks for all these beautiful examples and resources, Linda!


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