Tuesday, February 07, 2006

BOOKS: Shelf Life

Why do I have the feeling that the person who designed these shelves doesn't actually have a lot of books?

I may be projecting, but I've always thought that we booklovers have a thing for orderliness and right angles. Or am I the only person who sees these, imagines my own books housed upon them, and needs to go lie down in a darkened room with a cold compress on my head?

(Shelflife shelving designed by Viable
)

25 comments:

krista- the silent k said...

Ha! I love books and I think I could go for one of those shelves. But my friend who is a fellow book lover would be joining you with the cold compress for sure.

Rebecca said...

Hel-lo Alice in Wonderland! I can't figure out how you're supposed to fit any books on there, period. However, I do like the pull-out chair and stool - kind of convenient for those times you think you're only going to read a page and end up wanting to read the whole thing.

landismom said...

Yeeaahhh...right....I'm gonna put books in there. I do like a bookshelf with variable shelves (for those art museum catalogs, and the like), but that is a little too variable!

Kim said...

Um. Yeah. I can feel my blood pressure rising... someone bring me a Paxil.

Jagosaurus said...

Yeah, I couldn't handle those shelves, even with the handly little chair sneaked in there. I need my neat, orderly, right angles. I saw those shelves recently in a catalog and had to go lie down for a while until the disorientation passed. I may have to do so again now....

--Deb said...

No, it's not just you. I agree the chair and stool are kind of cool, but the thing I think of when I look at that case? You can't FILL it with books. You can line the (slanted) shelves with them, but there will always be space that's empty, that you can't slide a normal-sized book into. I like right angles and level shelves quite a bit, because I'm an orderly person, but what I like best about standard bookshelves is how easy it is to fill every inch with actual books. Decorating shows where they empty someone's library from built-in bookcases and fill them with knick-knacks and a few, color-sorted books for "interest" raise my blood pressure. You're right. Designers just don't understand about books!

Antipodean said...

I think it says something about my dislike for these shelves when you all easily identified a "pull out chair", while I thought "Oh my GOD, what is that even for? Magazines?"

I am perhaps a little dumb, but then so are those shelves.

... said...

my skin hurts and my teeth ache. i will now straighten everything on my desk until i feel better. seroiusly, that was really upsetting.

Jagosaurus said...

I also had to straighten up my desk after seeing those shelves.

Diner Girl said...

I need to go scrub my countertops in the kitchen. This is making me twitch.

Doppelganger said...

It's funny. I'd gotten used to that picture, and then after reading all your comments I went back and looked at it again, and seriously? I had a temporary bout of vertigo. I'm not even exaggerating.

But yes, the little chair is neat. I'd like to see this design re-thought in a non-vertiginous way that would still include the chair.

Arford said...

Hmm. I guess I'm the outlier here. I really like the look. But I always was a bit off-kilter. If I could get my hands on a non-white version for a reasonable price (ha!), I'd buy one.

Emily said...

Finally, a set of fancy shelves that don't leave me with a desperate, materialistic longing! =)

I... really don't get these. And would you even be able to use the slanted shelves for books? Wouldn't things get bent? And you wouldn't even be able to use them for those decorative knick-knacks I hear some people have. It all seems so wasteful to me, especially considering that my own books are shelved two deep, with books stacked on top of other books. I'm not even that handy with a hammer, and my mind is still trying to figure out a way to dismantle those shelves and use the wood to build something useful.

Joshua said...

I think these look cool, but I don't really want my books canted downard and nor do I want such a waste of space! I have trouble enough keeping all my books shelved on regular shelves, but this one hasa gigantic hole in the middle that'd be good for at least three shelves. What am I supposed to put there? A bunch of those really really big birthday cards?

Lisa said...

At first, I thought, "Hey, those shelves are kind of cool." But then I starting thinking about which books I would put where, and I started liking them less because I'd have a lot of unshelved books and a lot of unbooked shelves. Then I thought about taking a book off the shelf---and that's when the hate started. Because there is no way to take a book off the majority of the shelves without creating an avalanche.

This is a bookshelf only Bush could love.

martha said...

I'm emphatically NOT an orderly person, but I am a booklover, and those are the stupidest shelves I've ever seen. Unless you live in the wonderful world of Dr. Seuss, maybe.

Tamara said...

I can't understand how you would fill them. And I don't really think bookshelves should be half empty.

Rachel said...

The only reason for those shelves would be to organize a baby's stuffed animal collection. They could all hang out wherever is comfortable for them and the lack of level surfaces wouldn't matter so much.

Other than that... I can't think of a single thing I would use these shelves for, unless it were to torture my friends.

Anonymous said...

Plus...you'd clearly have to organize your books by size (oversized artbooks at one end, paperbacks at the other) to get them to fit right, instead of organizing them in whatever clearly anal retentive way we all have of organizing books (thematically, authorly, by what looks good next to what...take your pick).

lumenatrix said...

Well, I'm a person who sorts her books by size, not title or subject. For that reason, these shelves sort of intrigue me... A few of the slots are even tall enough for my oversized coffee table art books... and I love the little chair. I probably would end up pulling out the hammer and nails and cutting one of the too tall shelves in half, though.

Jessica said...

I'm with lumenatrix. I organize by size and group by visual appeal. And I love the seeming randomness of these shelves. I also love the hideaway chair... it's all very unusual and visually shocking, which I love. But, like Arford, I've always been a bit off.

Anonymous said...

Am I the only one who giggled at the irony of the company's name? Viable? For whom?

Lisa M said...

I love that the name of the designer site is Viable.

Well, not really, maybe as sculpture. But in bookshelves, form should follow function.

Gayle said...

Am *I* the only one who loves books and TOTALLY WANTS THOSE SHELVES OH MY GOD?!

..yes?

..Ok, going back to my asymmetrical book-filled room then...

Janice said...

I need a cild compress and a valium!
My bookshelves are tightly packed mostly and the books are upright like soldiers (by size)