Everyone has a bag these days, whether it’s a backpack, a messenger bag, a handbag, or one of the more fashionable descendants of the fanny pack. Despite varying designs and sizes, almost all bags have two things in common, they have handles or straps, and you wouldn’t want to leave them lying on the floor in offices and coffee shops. Some tables in these public spaces now offer hidden bag hooks under the table, but these seemingly ingenious solutions come with their own drawbacks. A proper solution doesn’t have to be overly complicated or sophisticated, and sometimes, the simplest one wins. That’s the kind of thinking that may have gone into these ultra-minimalist tables that hide their bag hooks in plain sight.
Designer: Hajime Kumazawa
The need for bag hooks has been a rather recent phenomenon as more people flocked to coffee shops and communal spaces, including those in offices. There was even a phase when bag hook accessories became trendy because very few tables had such hooks built into them. Such tables are more common these days but still not standard, so you might find people awkwardly groping under a table just to check if there are any hooks for their bags.
Therein lies the fundamental design problem of bag hooks. Intended to hide bags from view, they sacrificed practicality and ease of use on the altar of keeping up appearances. Ironically, these tables are places where things can get a bit messy, either from food or from work. Hanging the bags beneath the surface doesn’t even help in getting them out of your way because they often result in uncomfortable leg positions to avoid hitting the bags in the first place.
The DTN Table design fixes this problem by being simple and honest about its purpose. It doesn’t pretend to be some stylish piece of artistic furniture by hiding bags from sight. Instead, it makes it super simple to hang bags on the four legs of the table, allowing for easy access and really getting out of the way of your legs. This might invite some messy arrangements, and it does limit how many people can hang their bags at the corners, but the purpose of the table is more for transient activity, like meals, meetings, and similar.
The table itself is unabashedly utilitarian in design, practically just a slab of melamine on top of four steel legs with aluminum die-casting. It is as minimal as it can be, with few options for different colors of the tabletop or the legs. It also comes in either rectangular or square sizes, and you can easily put them side by side if you need more space or more bag hooks. That’s not to say there’s nothing else to this table. By default, it comes with two casters and two glides to make it possible to move the table around just as easily.
Admittedly, the DTN Table might seem plain and unexciting on its own, with its singular visual quirk being the top of the legs that serve as bag hooks. Almost ironically, having those bags hang on the outside for everyone to see does add some flavor to these plain tables, making them feel like living places where people interact with each other, which is exactly what such tables are designed for in the first place.