Formafantasma’s minimalist, responsible shelving system for Hem

Formafantasma and Hem unveil the ‘T Shelf’, a design in extruded aluminium created in collaboration with specialist Hydro

Bookcase in the middle of white room
(Image credit: Marco Cappelletti)

We always welcome a bit of shelf improvement so we’re smitten with the new ‘T Shelf’, the minimalist outcome of a debut collaboration between Swedish furniture brand Hem and research-based design studio Formafantasma. Hem founder Petrus Palmér first approached the studio about a collaboration back in 2017 and, after five years of skilful product development, the brand has now unveiled this quietly sophisticated shelving system.

Using an extruded aluminium composition, traditionally used in industrial manufacturing processes, the ‘T Shelf’ is a highly complex innovation featuring a seemingly simple T profile that allows for long unsupported spans and an elegant yet sturdy construction.  

Paper spread over desk

(Image credit: Marco Cappelletti)

‘Working with Hem felt like a natural fit, and the team really allowed us to push creative boundaries,’ say Formafantasma’s co-founders Andrea Trimarchi and Simone Farresin, who recently returned to Italy after 14 years in the Netherlands, opening a studio within the spaces of the Assab One cultural complex.

‘Hem’s patience with the long process of prototyping and testing resulted in a final product that looks minimal and elegant but is a masterpiece of design and manufacturing.’

Close up of metal structure

(Image credit: Marco Cappelletti)

Trimarchi and Farresin wanted to create a piece that would be timeless, but that also took into account the responsible use of materials. ‘It’s important to us that our work is not wasteful,’ say the design duo. ‘Extrusion creates minimal waste and aluminium is easily recyclable.’ This led Hem’s research and development team to a new manufacturing partner, Hydro, a company that specialises in high-quality aluminium and is committed to sustainable practice, with the ‘T Shelf’ being made from Hydro Restore, a combination of recycled pre-and-post consumer scrap and primary aluminium.

As an added bonus, this cutting-edge system, which comes in an industrial anodised aluminium finish, comprises six different height and width modules that can be connected, allowing for myriad bespoke shelving solutions.

Metal bookcase in a courtyard

(Image credit: Marco Cappelletti)

Side board with shelves

(Image credit: Marco Cappelletti)



Anne Soward joined the Wallpaper* team as Production Editor back in 2005, fresh from a three-year stint working in Sydney at Vogue Entertaining & Travel. She prepares all content for print to ensure every story adheres to Wallpaper’s superlative editorial standards. When not dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s, she dreams about real estate.

With contributions from