The suburbs don’t get much love, so it’s sweet that the Swedish design studio Note is winking at urban sprawl with its new office storage unit. The hanging piece–dubbed Suburbia–was modeled after an “iconic representation of the universal suburban landscape we all know and love,” Note’s Alexis Holmqvist tells Co.Design.
The office tool was modeled on the countryside–full of grasslands and hills. But, much like real-life cities, real estate got tight: “As we gradually increased the density of storage, for functional as well as aesthetic reasons, it evolved into a crowded suburb.” Note added petite, dollhouse-like details along the way: “We played with other objects to add new functionalities, such as the pool made out of a mirror, trees as pegs, picket fences as shelves, and a clip as trampoline.”
Predating Suburbia by a long shot is Uten.silo. Dorothee Becker designed the storage unit in 1969, and it became an immediate classic. Rumor has it she first created a toy switchboard for her kids, with knobs and toggles in different shapes. But when her children ditched the toy, she flipped the piece into an organizational tool. Vitra picked up the Uten.silo, then known as the Wall-All, and the unit remains a (pricey) design icon to this day. The Italian company Seletti asked Note to reinterpret Uten.silo, and so Note did, adding their own twists along the way.