Golden Ratio Shelves

So I have this problem:

messI need to make some shelves. I need to make some shelves badly.

… but then I thought “Why make them badly (like I normally do) when I could make them quite well?”. So I went to the Internets in search of inspiration.

The ones I liked best were these

wall-unit-bookcase-2Ooh I thought – those look a bit golden-meany… I wonder if…

image2993Sure enough. Nothing 100% exact of course – but pretty close.

This is a good example of confirmation-bias though. The way that if we fixate on something, we filter out everything else and tend to see only what we want to see.

This bookshelf looked like one of those puzzles where you need to figure out the number of squares:

There are 40.

The formula for this is “length² + (length-1)² + (length-2)²… and so on down to 1”.

So for this puzzle it’s 16 + 9 + 4 + 1… + 2×2 squares extra… (4+1)*2 = 40.

But that’s just squares. If we’re counting rectangles, and that’s actually a much harder puzzle to work out – I make it 218? but I could be wrong.

So in a 7×7 grid (which is kindof what these shelves are), you’re probably looking at something like 700 different “potential” rectangles… but the ACTUAL number of near-golden ratio rectangles is closer to 20… so that is a hell of a lot of other ratios that are being skipped.


Studio wall. I wanted some shelves beside, and the same width as the desk.


with shelf design


Bits of wood etc…


(this is not a woodworking class, so I’ll skip the making-of (I’ve never made shelves before – fairly rough :)))…

Wound up with this:

shelves3 shelves

And I’m not sure if I like that or not, LOL.

It kindof upstages the entire wall. I think I might need to put a lamp or something to the left of it to balance it out.

Still… there you go. As a standalone thing it’s gorgeous :)

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