This handsome set of stackable wooden drawers assembles to create a pyramid to enshrine or entomb your things.
Many people look for storage solutions that save floor space, preferring shelves that grow vertically or boxes that can stick to walls. Others may have room to spare, though probably not in the same location all the time. Frama’s Sutoa shelves straddle the middle ground between those two extremes with a set of drawers that rise to the challenge to provide a safe haven for your things. Best of all, it also collapses down to a single unit when you don’t need it, making it trivial to store away or transport to your next living space.
Designer: Keiji Ashizawa
Named after the Japanese word that means “to contain,” the Sutoa blends two cultures’ minimalism in a single product that has a pinch of a third, long-gone civilization if you stretch your imagination a bit. On the one hand, you have the Japanese artisan’s love for wood in its natural appearance, with random grain patterns giving each drawer a unique appearance like none of its neighbors. On the other hand, you also have that Nordic spirit that throws away unnecessary parts. There are no gears and wheels in sight, except for the two rear wheels that make the entire assembly a bit more portable.
The wooden drawers themselves slide into the steel frame without using any extraneous mechanism. Each box is smaller than the one below it, creating a structure reminiscent of Aztec ziggurats or a wooden stairway to organizational heaven. You can easily take out each drawer completely without disturbing the others, making the storage system a bit modular. There are also thin gaps between each level, making it easy to take a sneak peek inside without having to pull out the drawer.
The drawers are also designed so that they can fit inside each other perfectly, creating a Matryoshka of wooden boxes. This comes in handy when you need to move apartments or houses or if you don’t have enough space to set up the Sutoa in its entirety. Alternatively, you can just move the drawer to another part of the house by tilting it back a bit and then rolling it on its wheels.
Like most minimalist furniture, the Frama Sutoa blends function and form in an aesthetically clean and pleasing way. The oak drawers in walnut or natural finish and the minimalist black steel frame also make the storage solution a good match for any interior design motif. It is a bold and beautiful example of how something doesn’t have to be complicated in order to have this many features. All it needs is a good product design.