This multifunctional piece by my fellow Brooklynite Isaac Krady has a lot to offer to a shoebox dweller. A clever little table, called Tre, can be adapted to different tasks and serve several purposes around your house. Designer explains: “Placed horizontally, the Tre can be used as a coffee table or an end table – its contour providing a nook for books and magazines. Placed vertically, the Tre works within the means of its name and doubles as a tray or laptop desk.” The piece is made from bent plywood.
Some of you might remember the brilliant and innovative REK bookcase by Rotterdam-based designer Reinier de Jong. He recently extended this idea to another piece – a coffee table. Called REK just like the bookcase, the piece is based on the same functional principle – the smaller panels slide inside the bigger frame, allowing the table to grow with your needs. Built-in stops prevent you from rolling out the sliding parts too far. You can also secure the piece in a desired position. In its collapsed state, the table is compact – 60 by 80 cm – and can fit even the tiniest of rooms. And with the maximum size of 130 by 170 cm, you can expand it to accommodate a large party comfortably. I also like how the end grain side of the wood is beveled in order to get a grip. A subtle and beautiful detail.
This table from Studio Uli Budde has a lot to be in love with. It is elegant, compact and loaded with functionality. The piece is a logical combination of coffee table, side table, and magazine rack. The central island is a practical surface for placing coffee, plates, sketchbook, or laptop. The area that wraps around is a storage space for books and magazines. The outside rim also serves as a bookmark when taking a break from reading. Simple and unobtrusive aesthetic of the reading table makes it perfect for the living room, bedroom or waiting room. The piece comes in two sizes.
The Kai table was custom-designed by Naoki Hirakoso in collaboration with Takamitsu Kitahara. A seamlessly rectangular object from even a short distance, the table unfolds to reveal many hidden storage compartments. The craftsmanship of the designers is truly impressive, they have incorporated as many hinged cupboards, slide-out panels, pull-out cubbyholes and drawers as the 900 centimeter wooden box could possibly allow. Beautiful idea and inspiring execution!
The UMYD (Union Modular y Democratica) coffee table by CruxFlux+ is actually several lounge pieces in one. The item consists of diagonal panels that expand via simple pivoting motion and form various configurations. UMYD can be used as a footrest, series of side tables, storage unit… The variations are limitless. When collapsed into its most compact form – the piece turns into an elegant low-level table with storage. Truly multifunctional idea.
Primi tray table by Phase Design made me look. The piece is not only a clever example of dual function, but also a very elegant one. The table is comprised of two parts – solid steel bar base and removable tray, which comes with an inset color plate or bronze mirror top. Base available in flat and gloss black or white powder-coat finish. Color plate available in various powder coat colors. Beautiful addition to a room of any size.
This beautiful coffee table, called Full House, was created by Copenhagen based design duo Strand+Hvass (Christina Strand and Niels Hvass). The piece is comprised of two parts, and by simply sliding the bottom part in and out – you can adjust the size of the table. Simple, unembellished and expandable, it makes perfect sense in any living room, big or small. Full House is made out of solid wood, comes in two sizes and several finishes.
(HT Carl MH Barenbrug)
I love coffe/dining table hybrids for the obvious reasons. Entertaining in small spaces is a balancing act, and these clever pieces make it doable. This particular design in addition to being clever is also adorable. The Bambi table by Caroline Olsson resemble a baby deer. The piece was ‘inspired by the anatomy of the knee, where the bones can only bend one way. The location and angle of the table legs, as well as the meeting points of the joints, help keeping the table upright and stable.’ Bambi can be used at two different levels; as a coffee table or a small dining table. Lovely!
These modular tables from Made strike with the simplicity of form and the beauty of natural materials. Handcrafted from reclaimed beams recovered from old buildings and structures, the Cascade tables celebrate wood in all its glory – with knots, and nail and bolt holes. And because the items are comprised of modular components, they come in many different sizes. The independent parts of these tables can be used as stools and/or side tables. Clever and visually stunning.
Here is a great example of dual function done right. The XY chair by Paris based designer Aïssa Logerot can be turned into a low table. And it can be done with one swift pivoting motion – no hustle or muscle required. The chair’s back becomes a tabletop and can hold drinks and appetizers in a party situation, cup of tea, books, and anything else you might need a surface for. The small size of XY makes it perfect for an urban setting.