A Flat-Pack Stair
9. November 2020
Klapster is a space-saving auxiliary staircase that folds up neatly against the wall when not in use. Designed by Frankfurt's raumvonwert, the modular system is ideal for city dwellers living in small spaces.
Just as IKEA furniture comes flat, ready for buyers to put it together themselves, Klapster is delivered with a detailed construction manual and assembly video for its new DIY owners. The company's FAQs contends, "The installation can thus be mastered by any hobby craftsman" in roughly two to four hours, depending on the model.
There are three Klapster variations: the Slim and Ultralight versions with steps 13cm and 10cm deep, respectively, and the more robust Comfort, which has deeper 18.5cm steps but also a spring-supported rotation axis that makes it easy to open and stow away. Accordingly, Comfort is the most expensive, at just shy of €3000, while the Ultralight is about half that price. Sorry non-EU residents, Klapster is currently available for delivery only in Germany and the rest of the European Union.
Sized to the eventual installation, Klapster is delivered as puzzle pieces made up of the individual steps and adjoining stringers. Installation requires fitting each stringer-step-stringer puzzle piece with the next one, until the whole stair is assembled, ready to be lifted into place and screwed to the wall. Needless to say, the installation depends greatly upon factors outside of the stair itself, namely the wall construction and clearances for the stair to fold up. The product comes in three finishes: natural wood veneer, oiled, and HPL (high pressure laminate) coating. For safety, an optional handrail can be attached to the outer stringer and non-slip adhesive strips can be applied to the steps.
Klapster, spotted at German-Architects, was developed by Lukas Wagner, Bastian Amberg, and Katja Becker from raumvonwert, a young interior design firm based in Frankfurt am Main. Twice a month, barring COVID restrictions, they open up their workshop to visitors curious to see Klapster before they buy one.