Open shelving has been popular for a while. I’ve seen all kinds of shelves used from modern styles to reclaimed wood. Edges can be straight and clean or raw. Brackets can be black, bronze, or not exposed at all. There are endless possibilities. See my Pinterest board for some great photos and ideas.
Open shelves give a kitchen more space because it’s not weighed down with heavy cabinetry. I think a mix of cabinetry, open shelving, and cabinetry with glass faces looks nice. It adds variety and excitement to a kitchen that may seem a bit boring if there are just all the same cabinets.