Judge the problem-solving ability of these rotating shelves for yourself, but we think it’s an open-and-shut case.
Small homes are notorious for two things: lack of storage and lack of privacy when guests are over. But Australian architect Ben Milbourne
solved both of those problems with one transforming floor-to-ceiling bookcase. The unit stores everything the homeowner needs, while six rotating panels can close off the space for privacy or completely open for more light and better views.
Photography by TM Photo
The apartment, in a former warehouse in central Melbourne, is only about 50 or 60 square meters (no more than 640 square feet), and was originally a studio. Milbourne collaborated on the project with the homeowner, his friend Leyla Acaroglu, who runs a lifestyle assessment consultancy called Eco Innovators
, to develop the shape-shifting unit.
When closed, the bookcase extends from wall to wall and floor to ceiling, separating the living room from the bedroom.
But Acaroglu can spin six panels located on the upper half of the bookcase to open the living room to her bedroom.
When Acaroglu has guests over, she closes off her bedroom for more privacy.
When she’s by herself, she opens the whole thing up to get more light and better flow through the space.
Developing the rotating mechanism took several months. Acaroglu and Milbourne eventually landed on a design that’s basically an industrial version of a lazy Susan: A circular bearing that’s 1 foot in diameter sits on the inside of each of the six hollow panels. A rotator pin inserted into the top of each unit keeps them in place.
Furniture designer David Waterworth helped assemble the piece onsite in about a day.
Bolts secure the panels together when Acagroglu settles on a configuration.
Sustainability drove the project; all the materials are recycled or salvaged. The wood once formed a barrier around a construction site and was on its way to a landfill, covered in graffiti and band posters.
The team snatched up the plywood and sealed the street art and posters right onto the wood. (They refer to the unit as the UnWaste bookcase.)
You can still see portions of graffiti and other markings on the shelves.
Article Written By: Mitchell Parker
, Houzz Editorial Staff; writer, musician, father, husband.