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8 Bunk Beds That Are (Almost) Too Cool to Sleep In

If you’re sharing a bedroom with someone, it's either going to be super fun or a super drag and either way, an awesome bunk bed is the perfect thing to add some practical whimsy. Ditch generic twofer beds most commonly seen in college dorms and hostels around the world and consider a few of the options below. They're sure to turn sleepy time into an event—every single night.

1. STAR WARS IMPERIAL WALKER

Jonathan Wentworth // Screenshot via YouTube

Did you hear that? It’s the sound of millions of Star Wars fans crying out in envy. The owners of this themed bunk bed are maybe the luckiest kids in the galaxy, and they probably weren't even alive when the prequels hit theaters.

2. ECTO-1 CAR

Image via Dave Delisle

This ghost-busting design is sadly only a concept, but all great ideas have to start somewhere! Designer Dave Delisle used the iconic Ecto-1 1959 Cadillac Professional for inspiration for this cool creation, with the roof rack serving as a barrier for the top bunk, and the hood of the car providing additional bedroom storage.

3. JURASSIC PARK RAPTOR CAGE

Dave Delisle also designed this Jurassic Park-themed Velociraptor cage concept bed. The door slides closed to keep the wild animal (read: kid) inside, and the exterior has the industrial feel of a high-tech containment system from the film. Delisle writes on his website: “My only qualm with this design is having to punch out a hole in the bed frame at the top of the ladder, which prevents this from looking exactly like the raptor cage; however that’s in keeping with all bunk bed designs, so safety and accessibility should be considered for a real-life bed.”

4. SOFA BUNK BED

Couches that transform into beds are nothing new, but designing a couch with a hidden bunk bed inside is something special. The full conversion only takes about 20 seconds, so the transition from watching a movie to meeting the sandman is always a quick one. Now all we need is a name for this extra-special futon. 

5. SURF SHACK

Image via YouTube

Kids can enjoy the beach year-round with this indoor surf shack. Using leftover and recycled materials and real water reeds, a handy dad spent two months building the structure for his sons. There's even a working doorbell and a coconut telephone so the kids can talk to each other from bed. We might make a motion for a sand-covered floor for authenticity, but mom and dad would likely have a problem with that. 

6. SUPER MARIO CASTLE

Image via Imgur 

Bring virtual reality into the real world with this kid-sized homage to retro gaming. The stairs to the top bunk are hidden behind 8-bit bricks, and the rest of the castle matches the style and color of the Super Mario landmark perfectly, with the archways serving as windows for the bottom bunk.

7. TOWERING PINK CASTLE

Image via Imgur

If Super Mario isn't the king of the castle in your home, fear not: There's a bunk bed castle for all tastes. Kids can rule their own kingdom from this big pink castle, with stairs on one side and a slide on the other, which the builder/mastermind admits is a little too steep: “My girls flew down it and right into the wall, but of course they laughed and said again,” user G00D_GUY wrote on Imgur. “After a few times they got the speed down.”

8. ROOM FOR THREE

Image via Imgur

Three is a crowd that doesn't feel too crowded in this deluxe custom build. This design has two beds on top and one on the bottom left, with extra space on the right that's perfect for a play area or a pet’s bed. While a feat of spatial efficiency, this design does come with a conundrum: Which sibling has to take the bottom while the other two get to party it up together in the penthouse?

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Courtesy Umbrellium
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These LED Crosswalks Adapt to Whoever Is Crossing
Original image
Courtesy Umbrellium

Crosswalks are an often-neglected part of urban design; they’re usually just white stripes on dark asphalt. But recently, they’re getting more exciting—and safer—makeovers. In the Netherlands, there is a glow-in-the-dark crosswalk. In western India, there is a 3D crosswalk. And now, in London, there’s an interactive LED crosswalk that changes its configuration based on the situation, as Fast Company reports.

Created by the London-based design studio Umbrellium, the Starling Crossing (short for the much more tongue-twisting STigmergic Adaptive Responsive LearnING Crossing) changes its layout, size, configuration, and other design factors based on who’s waiting to cross and where they’re going.

“The Starling Crossing is a pedestrian crossing, built on today’s technology, that puts people first, enabling them to cross safely the way they want to cross, rather than one that tells them they can only cross in one place or a fixed way,” the company writes. That means that the system—which relies on cameras and artificial intelligence to monitor both pedestrian and vehicle traffic—adapts based on road conditions and where it thinks a pedestrian is going to go.

Starling Crossing - overview from Umbrellium on Vimeo.

If a bike is coming down the street, for example, it will project a place for the cyclist to wait for the light in the crosswalk. If the person is veering left like they’re going to cross diagonally, it will move the light-up crosswalk that way. During rush hour, when there are more pedestrians trying to get across the street, it will widen to accommodate them. It can also detect wet or dark conditions, making the crosswalk path wider to give pedestrians more of a buffer zone. Though the neural network can calculate people’s trajectories and velocity, it can also trigger a pattern of warning lights to alert people that they’re about to walk right into an oncoming bike or other unexpected hazard.

All this is to say that the system adapts to the reality of the road and traffic patterns, rather than forcing pedestrians to stay within the confines of a crosswalk system that was designed for car traffic.

The prototype is currently installed on a TV studio set in London, not a real road, and it still has plenty of safety testing to go through before it will appear on a road near you. But hopefully this is the kind of road infrastructure we’ll soon be able to see out in the real world.

[h/t Fast Company]

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iStock
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fun
Here's How to Turn an IKEA Box Into a Spaceship
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iStock

Since IKEA boxes are designed to contain entire furniture items, they could probably fit a small child once they’re emptied of any flat-packed component pieces. This means they have great potential as makeshift forts—or even as play spaceships, according to one of the Swedish furniture brand’s print ads, which was spotted by Design Taxi.

First highlighted by Ads of the World, the advertisement—which was created by Miami Ad School, New York—shows that IKEA is helping customers transform used boxes into build-it-yourself “SPÄCE SHIPS” for children. The company provides play kits, which come with both an instruction manual and cardboard "tools" for tiny builders to wield during the construction process.

As for the furniture boxes themselves, they're emblazoned with the words “You see a box, they see a spaceship." As if you won't be climbing into the completed product along with the kids …

Check out the ad below:

[h/t Design Taxi]

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