The Swiss Knife has long been the symbol of compact utility. The fact that its design principles hasn’t been applied anywhere else is actually a bit odd, although it does seem hard to imagine how that out-flipping function would fit anywhere else except hand tools. As it turns out, it could be applied to wall shelving as well, as evidenced by the Mexican Army Shelf.
Like a Swiss Knife, the unique shelf looks like a stack of items (in this case, wood), neatly tucked into a frame. In fact, it looks like the ugliest wood shelf imaginable. Start tugging on the layers, though and the brilliance reveals itself.
The Mexican Army Shelf works much like a pull-out closet, except the protruding implements offer a varied range that go beyond mere boxes. In keeping with the Swiss Knife theme, layers pull out in a rotating manner from the corner.
Designed by students at Mexican design school Ludens, the piece currently has four layers, with a total of 7 fold out sections (one uses the space of two layers). Layers include a keyholder, a mirror, a clothes hanger, coin storage, a note plank and a regular box.
Cleaned up, updated a little to feature more useful functions (an entire plank for pasting notes just doesn’t cut it) and given a spit-shine finish, this could be an amazing piece for a bedroom or a garage. I don’t think it can work well for the living room (it looks too cluttered), though I’m sure some innovative designer will find a way.