The number of objects we own doesn’t remain fixed over time, so why should the dimensions of our shelving? Transforming shelves make room for all the changing circumstances in our lives, whether we’re moving into new spaces or displaying new treasures procured on a recent voyage. They’re also just plain fun to assemble and customize.
When it’s in its straight, fully upright position, the Wave bookshelf by Studio Lorier looks fairly ordinary. But give the individual segments a little push or pull and you can radically transform its overall shape, creating anything from zig-zags to ripples. It’s made of solid pine wood, and individual segments can easily be added or removed to change its height. No need to fuss with a whole lot of screws to hold it in place once you’ve settled on your own custom configuration — there’s just a single bolt to tighten in the back.
What initially appears to be a flat wall panel reveals its secrets when you pick and prod at its surface. The SHIFT shelf by LAYER is a flexible shelving system made of industrial textile waste, with zero metal fasteners required to pop its shelves into place. Instead, the designers have manufactured kerf grooves into each panel to allow them all to bend, with fold-out segments offering support from underneath. SHIFT is available in either yellow, gray, blue recycled denim, or white recycled hospital bed sheets.
T.SHELF by J1 Studio
The T.SHELF by designer Jaewon Cho of J1 Studio uses a triangle as its most basic shape, slotting modular wooden boards together in a virtually infinite number of configurations. Putting them together is a fun design challenge because the end result is completely up to you! Multiple sets of these shelving components can be combined to create geometric installations that cover entire walls, if you’re feeling particularly ambitious. The shelves are all made of plywood, and putting them together is much easier than it looks. You simply secure the corners with zip ties.
When you move into a new home, chances are the dimensions of your new rooms will be a little different than the ones that you’re used to. When your shelves expand and contract, you never have to worry about a piece you love no longer fitting into your space. The SET shelf by Stephanie Hornig features folded steel shelves that do exactly that, sitting atop the rails of an accordion-like beech wood frame. These rails are connected by pivots reminiscent of the way scissors fit together, allowing you to adjust the width of the shelves within seconds. The metal shelves also serve to stabilize the frame once they’re put in place.
You’ll never have to worry about running out of room for your growing book collection with the REK bookcase by Reinier de Jong. It starts out as a compact, portable unit when all of its segments are pushed together, but pull on the ends, and the shelves expand to much more sizable proportions. Because of the way the zig-zag segments of the bookcase fit together, you end up with several different shelf sizes, which can be used to accommodate both your smallest paperbacks and your heftiest tomes.