Bookcases & Shelves

2 Cool London Bookshelf Staircases

Spot Cool Stuff loves books. And we love creative staircases. So it isn’t surprising that we’re drawn to cool stuff at the confluence of both.

Here’s a look at two unusual architectural designs that combine stairs with bookshelves. Has it happens, both are located in London. And neither has an owner that’s about to move their book collection to an Amazon Kindle anytime soon.

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Elegant Bookshelves for the Nomadic

Spot Cool Stuff loves the high design simplicity. Which is exactly why we like the Swedese Libri bookshelf system.

And we aren’t the only fans of these bookshelves—the Swedese Libri won the Best New Product Design award at the 2008 Stockholm Furniture Fair.

What’s so cool about the Swedese Libri?

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Elastic Bookshelves

As a school kid we used to play with rubber bands when bored in class. We like to imagine the Italian designer who thought of the Elastico Bookcase playing with rubber bands too and then getting a simple, inspired, idea:

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The Modern Murphy Bed Renaissance

Design—and fashion—are circular in nature. Trends come, and go, and then come again.

So it is with the Murphy Bed, that bane of 1970s studio apartments. After a 30 year hiatus we are in the midst of a revival of beds that fold down from a wall. Except now a Murphy Bed is as likely to fold down from a ceiling or emerge from the back of a desk. And instead of the ugly wall monstrosity that reveals a lumpy mattress, today’s Murphy Beds are sleek, elegant and comfortable.

The difference between modern Murphy Beds and those of yesteryear has lead at least one website to call for these hidden beds to be called something else. “Flying beds” it suggests. Whatever moniker you want to use for them, here are some designs that caught Spot Cool Stuff’s eye:

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Thut Möbel Scissor Shelf Unit

When buying a shelf system you usually have to choose between good design and portability. Swiss designer Thut Möbel developed a shelf unit with both qualities. Collapsed the unit is a mere 24 cm (9.5″) tall. Expanded you set the distance between the six shelves at 33 cm (13″) or 28 cm (11″). Available in an untreated, black or natural wood finish.

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JUXTAPOSED:Religion

You wouldn’t design a bookshelf around the latest best sellers or some fad self help books. But you might if the books were the most important ever written. That’s what design firm Mike and Maaike did when they form fitted a piece of reclaimed redwood to display humanity’s most holy literary works: The Bhagavad Gita, The Bible, The Qur’an, Confucius’ The Analects, The Tao Te Ching, Discourses of the Buddha, and The Torah. Together they make for 3,700 years of wisdom, brought together harmoniously on this beautiful bookshelf.

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SPOTCOOLSTUFF Design reviews furniture, cool architecture, personal accessories and a cadre of high design items with a WOW! factor. Because you shouldn't have to choose between form and function! Get our latest design posts by email:

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