The hunt for bar/counter stools

I promised you all a post on my experience of finding the right counter stools for my kitchen island. I am not one to disappoint, so here you go!

Did I expect to find this task so hard…? Certainly not, I thought it would be a ‘walk in the park’ after being faced with multiple decisions throughout my build project but, I was surely mistaken when the hunt for said stools, took in total (granted I didn’t search every day) roughly 5 months to complete! I know this must sound so silly but honestly, I found the process so tricky.

Not only is there an endless array of design options available, they drastically vary in price and in height. Yes, height. Did you know there is a difference between a counter stool and a bar stool, and not all brands correctly label their stools as either one of these? At first, I didn’t, so went about my way blind to the fact that bar stools are not what I want at all. They are, on average, 10cm higher than a counter stool and therefore too high for you to comfortably sit on under your countertop. This all makes so much sense if you actually thought about the naming of these stools but to confuse matters, some brands call their stools ‘bar stools’ when they are in fact counter stools, and vice versa! Word of advice, search by both names and when you find a stool you like, check out the specifications for the seat height measurement.

Once better educated on the matter, I was on the hunt for “counter” stools that were roughly 65-70cm in seat height.

In terms of design, this changed throughout my search. I started off by wanting a more traditional style like the Vincent Shepard Joe Counter Stool but struggled slightly (or should I say, my husband struggled) to justify the price of these stools. Although stunning and very well made, 2 stools would set me back over £700.

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Humphrey Munson often use the Joe Counter Stool in their Imagery

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Our trip to St Albans where Wren, my friend’s little girl, tried out the stool! £355 each

After seeing the stools that were hired for our Tom Howley photoshoot, I immediately fell in love with the polished chrome look. They worked so well with the kitchen door handles and light pendants, the only problem was that these stools were actually ‘bar stools’ not ‘counter stools’ (!!) so were too high for anyone to sit on with their legs under the island counter top.

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I did manage to find some very similar stools that came in a lower height of 60cm, although this did feel a little too low. These are called the Nuta Barstool. However, in the end, I decided against these stools after considering who would be using them the most – my children. I felt that these weren’t child-friendly enough given there is no back to them and the seat shape is very flat.

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Nuts Barstool, Clippings, £204 each

My search continued and ended up diverting to a much more contemporary look with the Hay Hee Stool. My main issue with these was that I didn’t think they would be terribly comfortable, especially when sat on with bare legs!

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Hay Hee, Clippings, £145 each

Other stools that I liked and were reasonably priced…

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Carved Mango Stool – Grey Legs, Cox and Cox (75cm though), £175 each

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Aramaic Bar Stool, Wayfair, £230 each

Finally, after countless web searches, I settled on a counter stool which I believe, is not only practical and comfortable, is child-friendly and well-designed. It is the Normann Copenhagen Form Barstool H65cm. The stool is simplistic in design and effortlessly stylish. The plastic seat and wood legs meet elegantly, accentuating the quality craftsmanship and the simplicity of the Scandinavian furniture design.

I opted for a grey coloured seat to tie in with my sofa and kitchen wall units, walnut legs to match my dining table and outside decking and a steel footrest to link in with my metal door handles.

I just loved the fact I could select the colours and materials to match my home decor making it bespoke to my style. Not only does it work with my decor, it is sturdy and comfortable to use. The children can clamber onto them and they stay firm to the ground making them safe and family friendly.

I am so pleased with my decision. I am in fact sat on one of these stools right now as I type this post and I couldn’t be more comfortable!

Thanks for reading x

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