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The beauty of owning a set of reliable stools is that they not only provide versatile and convenient seating, but can also be used as a stylistic accessory, as a side table or even to provide access to out-of-reach nooks and crannies. The most common uses for stools are in bars and set at high tables, whether it’s in a pub, a bar or at home in your kitchen. When it comes to purchasing stools for your own home, the first decision to make is what purpose they will serve, and what style would best suit their placement – whether it be smaller seats on high legs with backrests, or simple stool seats to be perched upon.

The primary uses for stools inside and outside the home

As well as high bar stools, the umbrella term ‘stools’ also refers to seating options which are much lower down – opening up even more versatility around use. For example, a low stool could be used as a seat, a footrest, a statement piece or a small side table. Likewise, taller stools are ideal when pushed up against breakfast bars and high tables, but can also be moved outside and perched upon during a gathering, or can serve as a decorative surface to display frames or plants. Other more practical uses include providing a step up towards something high up which otherwise cannot be reached, and offering a mobile seat which is common across salons, hairdressers, dentists, medical practices, exhibitions and even reception spaces.

Innovative stool concepts

Traditionally, stools were made up of a round seat atop either one central leg or four supportive legs. Nowadays, the range of styles and designs available is vast and all inclusive, taking into account both the practical uses and the design aesthetics of stools. Some of our favourite options available right now can be found across furniture retailers and independent homeware stores, specialising in unique and playful items for the home. These designs encompass everything from vibrant colours and patterns to completely unique structures, including stools designed to look like safari animals on very tall legs, stools which resemble as much an art piece as they do a practical seating option, and luxury stools which provide a backrest and comfortable cushioned seating. Another area in which stools have been developed is in their actual structure and form, with many now available with an adjustable height lever and rotating seat. These types of stools are most common across business premises but are also popular at breakfast bars and at-home bars as they provide the user with the means of turning full circle to address other users, without having to pick up and move the whole stool. Of course, in finding your perfect stool it pays to first consider the use that you are purchasing it for, and how best the stool will support your day to day life. Once you’ve determined the location in which your stools will live and how much space you have available, consider checking out various articles and catalogues to see how other homes use stools to dress and provide additional seating around the house. The best retailers to start at include furniture retailers, independent stockists (for the more out there and unique designs), and homeware stylists – all likely to offer selections based on a traditional home, contemporary homes or more of a modern feel. If in doubt about the best ones to buy, or if you are hoping to create more of a statement, look at purchasing a couple of different designs which compliment each other but do not directly match.

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