It’s the conundrum of any Ikea visit. How big do you go? Do you buy enough storage for right now, or do you pad it out? One way, you have a bunch of tchotchkes sitting on the floor in two years. The other, you live in an abandoned library.
The Set, by Austrian designer Stephanie Hornig, is a clever approach to expandable shelving. It uses a scissor frame so if you need just a little storage, squeeze the scissor shut. If you need a lot of storage, stretch it wide. The powder-coated steel shelving contains notching that can lock the frame into one of three widths.
Just two catches to the design: First, in its thinnest configuration, you’ll have to find some spot to store the unused shelving. And secondly, the Set appears to lose a bit of height as it grows in width. (But just turn all those encyclopedias sideways and you’ll be fine.)
Unfortunately, the Set appears to only be a prototype that never hit the market.