For modern baths, it’s shelves instead of sink cabinets.
One advantage of choosing a vessel sink for contemporary bathroom decor is flexibility. If that sounds like a generalization it’s an important one. Traditional bathroom vanities are designed to have the sink bowl recessed and the rim flush with the top of the counter. In contrast, contemporary vessel sinks tend to sit right on top of a flat surface with their full depth exposed. Since many vanities are standard height but the height of vessel sinks vary, shelves are a good alternative.
For a handsome powder room [top] where space is tight, a relatively shallow, square vessel sink (about 6-inches deep) sits right on the shelf and up against the planked wall. And since vessel sinks are normally (though not always) paired with wall mounted faucets, there is no need to allow for plumbing in the back. This sink, set on an extra thick slab of oak, is also attached to the wall and caulked. A second wood slab below it provides storage space. Without a cabinet, the sink-drain plumbing is exposed though that’s not always visible since this shelf is fairly deep. Here, a garden seat pushed in below the shelf screen the drainpipe out of the photo.
A large vessel sink can be cantilevered over a narrow shelf and integrated into a larger storage structure. Since the plumbing is wall-mounted, the sink is pushed neatly against the tile wall. The exposed drain pipe has a finished housing that essentially becomes part of the overall design. And by integrating the sink into the wall of low shelving, the bathroom becomes very functional since toiletries and other necessities are easily at hand.
One additional aspect of vessel sinks is how high or low they are mounted and how that affects use. The powder room sink appears to be higher than the other one. For me, at 5’7”, a sink rim at 35 to 37-inches off the floor is optimal (since it requires less bending over) though that measurement might be uncomfortably high for someone shorter. What’s great is to have the choice to adjust the height and integrate it into the overall bath design so fixtures line up harmoniously within the space.