Sallie Trout Jackalope house

Some shelves can be reached from a floor, adjacent landing or triangle-shaped spiral stairs, but what about the rest? As it turns out, a remote-controlled chain hoist attached to a bosun’s chair (stable climbing harness) while readers ride up and down to retrieve volumes.

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Sallie Trout climbing harness bookshelves

Sallie Trout went fairly far out of her normal interior, furniture, lighting and hardware design experience to create this towering family library right int the center of her own home, which is called “Jackalope” after the mythical rabbit hybrid creature.

Sallie Trout climbing harness bookshelves looking down

The shaft provides more than simply shelving for old books, serving as a multistory light well, natural ventilation shaft and decorated atrium – an arcane computer language shaped the strange forms of each individually-designed shelf unit as well.

More from the Austin-American Statesman:

“On this site, you’ll find jackalopes, all right. They’re Trout’s sculptural concoctions, which pop up throughout the landscape and inside the residence, which is full of Trout’s custom-designed furniture. Its structures were forged from everything from reclaimed cypress and galvanized steel to cement board and architectural aluminum casement windows.”

Sallie Trout Jackalope interior design

“Inside the 3,812-square-foot spread, Trout used Texas pecan counters for her kitchen, which also features a custom-built, mirrored-glass-and-steel display cabinet and custom-lighted shelving. The great room/dining area has a handmade walnut, forged iron and glass dining table and buffet by Trout Studios, plus custom leather-and-steel couches, turned-wood lamps and a Trout Studios daybed of ultrasuede in the reading nook.”

“I got down to the absolute minutiae with this house. I sewed the pillows, I made the furniture. … But on a project like this, my husband is just as much of the client as I am, and I’ve designed the space around his needs, in terms of integrating public and private spaces and giving separation and delineation and equity in closet space and palette.”

About Designer Sallie Trout

“Whimsy and sophistication. Attention to materials, processes and form and, in turn, their impacts on the users of products and the environment. Homage to great ideas of the past and a bold, iconoclastic individualism. These are some of the elements that define Trout Studios and its founder, Sallie Trout.”