Wooden headphone holder is also a magnificent piece of sculptural art

As the number of gear we use grows, so, too, the number of things littering our desks. Some, like phones or pieces of paper, are more transient, staying there only while you’re using the desk. Others take up more permanent residence, and therefore require a proper place to call home. That’s true not only for pens or stationery but even more so for device accessories like chargers, earbuds, and headphones. The latter often just get left lying around where you last laid them, which isn’t the best way to take care of them. There are quite a few headphone holders these days, but while some are just pieces of plastic or metal that hang headphones by their bands, this particular design is something you’d also be proud to show off on your desk, even without the headphones.

Designer: Carl Liu

Headphones are designed to be vertical, but that only works if they’re hanging on your head. When unused, they often lay on their sides, which isn’t visually appealing and could even ruin the coating of the headphones. Of course, it’s trivial to just hang them on some hook or stand, but if you’ll be displaying your favorite expensive pair, why not go all out and put them on something worthy of their stature?

That’s pretty much the rationale behind the origin of Figure EIGHT, a wooden headphone holder CNC milled from a single piece of North American walnut before being finished by hand. It gets its name from the two perpendicular holes that make up its core, basically two cylinders that hold different parts of the headphone. The top that faces forward creates a gentle ark for the headband. The bottom cylinder faces sideways, and their gently dipping curves are the perfect nooks for the ear pieces.

The design is an example of how form can follow function in a very elegant manner. There are even some extra hidden features, like how the space in between the ear cups could be used to hide the headphone cable, if it has one. The smooth surfaces and gentle curves of the holder’s form also means that there are no rough edges that could damaged the headphone material while it rests on its wooden bed.

Figure EIGHT’s biggest pull, however, is really its appearance, as it serves as a beautiful piece of decoration whether it’s in use or not. And while it is stylish in its own right, it also doesn’t pull your attention away from the headphones, making sure that your $600 pair is proudly on display in the best way.