Sep 10, 2012

Let's Talk About Stools

By now you should know that you're never more than a few posts away from inappropriate bathroom humor with me.  Just to ease your mind, this has nothing to do with bathrooms.  It has to do with seating for piano-playing.

I am still in love with my antique upright grand piano from craigslist.  It's in amazing shape for being 99 years old.  But the previous owners didn't have a bench or a stool for it.  So I set off in search of a some piano seating.

There are a ton of antique piano stools on craigslist.  I love the ones with glass feet, like this:

It has talons.

I found two main problems with them, though.  They are expensive.  Like way more than I paid for the piano expensive.  Try at least $100 for one that's serviceable but in poor condition. and upwards of $200 for something nice.  Also, even if I did find a deal on a stool I liked, I would have no way to be sure that it'd match the piano short of hauling it home.  Do you think craigslist sellers offer a return policy for color-matching?  Um, no.

So I decided to just roll with it.  If it was going to be impossible to procure a "matching" stool for a price I was willing to pay, then I'd just look for something that purposely didn't match.  I still wanted a stool rather than a bench though.  It's not difficult to find height-adjustable stools, and a stool would be a lot easier to tuck deep under the piano or completely remove from the room should we need space for a project or a social gathering.  A stool would also work for extra seating in a pinch.

Our living room is already kind of eclectic.  The couch, framed photos, and turquoise drapes are modern.  The club chairs, grandfather clock, and piano are traditional.  The side tables by the couch and the TV stand are shabby chic.  The end table between the club chairs is rustic.  The coffee table is industrial.  That left me a lot of style leeway for finding an adjustable stool that could hit 22" or so.


So I did what I always do- I scoured the interwebs, pinned what I liked, and looked for a pattern.

It was pretty obvious.  I loved vintage metal industrial-style stools.  Then it was just a process of elimination (and waiting for a new month's decorating budget to kick in).  The one with the wooden top was under $50, but had so-so reviews and I didn't really dig the light-colored wood for the seat.  The four-leg one at the top may not have been low enough for correct posture.  The pewter four-leg one was from Crate & Barrel, so naturally it was out of my price range.

I ended up going with the three-leg stool with the metal seat.  It got great reviews, was around $80, and would for sure work for the height I wanted.  I ordered it in the darker color, called burnt wax.

And here she is!

In all her three-legged glory.

The color actually compliments really well.  It looks quite dark from across the room, almost black.  But when you get closer, you can see these great imperfections to it, like it's an old drafting stool someone pulled out of a forgotten city loft.

Vintagey yum.

It's nice and compact, so it tucks under the register easily when I'm done playing (if I remember to tuck it) which means less chances of stubbed toes.  And I am happy to report that it is more than adequately functional!  No wobbles, no sharp edges, no bent seat.  In fact, I piano playing has increased 300% in this house now that I don't have to stoop in front of the keys to play.  Although now that I am playing more, the piano's need for a good tune up has become more evident.  With any luck, we'll be able to budget for a piano tech to come out next month and whip it into shape.

No comments:

Post a Comment