Interview - Shane Schneck

Sometimes we all need a little extra help around the house.

The Butler , a new versatile bench/ladder designed by Shane Schneck for HAY, whose smart design and thoughtful features make it an ideal household tool for a variety of contexts. Made from solid oak with contemporary details, and a wider bottom step allows for use as a side table, stool or even bedside table.

How did the idea for the Butler design come about?

We wanted to create a very practical product that could be used in any room of the house for multiple functions. Above all, the Butler is a well-crafted bench/ladder. But after that, it's up to the user to decide.

At 50cm tall, it's a comfortable height for a dining or office stool and is suitable for a younger member of the family. The deep step also makes it convenient to use as a small bedside table or as a side table in the living room.

Butler Hay

butler hay

What inspired the name of this product?

The typology in many ways is a servant for domestic use, which led us to the name. A silent, useful and reserved character as I imagined, who is always there when I need him.

hay butler

hay butler

Can you tell us a little about the function and history of an everyday hybrid household product like this?

A chair, in fact, is the original multipurpose household object, as it can be used as a "step stool," a nightstand, or a coat rack. In addition to its functional use, the chair is a cultural symbol that projects economic class and social ideology onto the owner.

There are other typologies, such as baskets, bowls and benches, which are used both functionally and decoratively.

hay butler