Three years ago I was visiting my brother and sister-in-law when I saw this cute little four-legged stool that my sister-in-law had found at her local Target for $15. It was a total dead ringer for Alvar Aalto's bent plywood stool--with an extra leg for good luck--and I had to have one immediately. When I returned home I searched every Target in Charlotte to no avail. I even drove thirty minutes into the suburbs to try and track one down, but I guess my town was either sold out (had others caught on to my discovery of this classic stand-in?) or not cool enough to have secured the stool in the first place. Either way, I was out of luck.
Then one day an unexpected package arrived at my house. Arriving from Annapolis, Maryland, I had no idea what it could be but knew who the shipper must have been. When I opened the box, I found my very own stool that my sister-in-law had procured at her Target. She then drove immediately to the UPS store to ship it to me. It was like Christmas in March, and I couldn't have been happier with my $15 stool. I had so many uses for it that I didn't know where to start. First it was a plant stand, then a side table by my husband's side of the sofa (perfect for resting a beer upon), then it was a side table on my side of the sofa (works for wine too!) and next it was a stand for the telephone in the dining room.
The poor little stool was so worked over that I finally gave it a quiet resting spot as my beside table. A couple weeks later a new Target opened in Charlotte, and it was there that I found its mate. I couldn't believe my eyes as I pushed my cart down the pre-assembled furniture aisle and spotted one lonely little four-legged bent leg stool. I swiped it up so quickly you would have thought there were hundred-dollar bills hidden inside it. When I got this one home, I dressed it up in a high-gloss orange paint and have used it in many ways throughout the house as well. I still find myself looking for this stool when I'm at Target. I could use 100 more--they're so simple and functional and portable that their use is only limited by your imagination.
The painted stool (above) and Alvar Aalto's original bent plywood stool (below).