The Cube


  • spArch
  • Wilkins and Kent
  • Hilary Bradford Photography


The ‘cube’ concept evolves from a study on ‘compact living’ – living small without giving up your comfort. This piece of furniture was designed for a 40 sqm studio apartment, originally an empty box with a kitchenette and a bathroom. A combination of solids and voids gives form to a compact and multi-functional pod, approximately 10 m³ of joinery, where each element has its specific function: sleeping area with a queen-sized bed on the mezzanine level and, at the lower level, study desk, bookshelves, bench seat, wardrobe and storage space along with compact walk-in robe accessible from a secret door.

Key Features


The design originates from a thoughtful process, creating an object that provides different functions in a compact form, without compromising on the aesthetic or the quality of the space.
The user experience is guided by the function. The different components are part of a whole, each function is clearly separate, and the key is the compactness that doesn’t affect the comfort.
The project was designed and built as a mix of pre-assembled components and components ready to be further assembled on site. It can be taken apart, transported, and rebuilt in a new location, like a flat pack bedroom/study/storage pod.


The design has a positive impact from different perspectives. As an object is made of FSC plywood and mdf with non-toxic low VOC factory spray paint. It was designed and made to last. This means that although it is site specific, it is versatile enough to be relocated in a different space. All the components are designed and made to be assembled and disassembled for future transport and adaptability to a different space.
Compactness, efficiency, and ease of assembly are the essence of this unique and highly customised design.


This project sets a high benchmark, showing that investing in design is the key to simple yet effective solutions for everyday needs.
Melbourne, especially in the city, has an enormous number of dwellings that too often lack in comforts. Working with or within density means that so much more could be done to make the empty boxes more like compact ‘homes’. This can only be achieved through functional design. Compact living it may not be for all however, where there is a lack of space, it does not mean that there should be a lack of comfort.


This design is unique in which it addresses and gives an answer to the issue of lack of space in city dwellings. A place to live it cannot be simply a jumble of objects and pieces of furniture. A home is welcoming, comfortable and functional.
In this project the key is the ceiling height, which gives the opportunity to use the space in a vertical way. So, the cube becomes your functional ‘corner’, providing different options of uses and activities.


In the Cube, each small space has a function, including storage boxes underneath the steps, ‘secret’ door to the underneath walk-in-robe, hidden shelf running behind the bedhead providing a comfortable bedside area for a night lamp, a book, and more.

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