Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Ikea Stools: Inspired by Aalto, Painted by Mini Moderns

Though the house is supposedly 'done', I still have a list as long as my arm of small tasks that I want to do. Was very pleased to get this little job done in the sunshine a couple of weekends ago.

Everybody knows the Ikea Frosta stool right? Cheap as chips, suspiciously stylish. Strikingly similar to Alvar Aalto's Stool 60 designed in 1933, it has had me torn between my copyright morals and my bank statement. The bank won. And these are both great stools, minimal, curved birch veneer, stacking beautifully. Perfect for hanging around waiting for those extra guests you forgot you invited. 

So, let's start with the Aalto stool. I fell in love with it moons ago, and when this range of colours was released last year to mark their 80th anniversary:

I really wanted them.

But of course, those 4 there would have set me back over £700. So y'know, I slapped myself for even considering them and went to Ikea.

Having seen Anna Dorfman at Door Sixteen do this to her Frosta stools, in super stylish black of course, I knew it had to be done. So I had a little search and was certain that the Mini Moderns Environmentally Responsible Paint Range would have just the colours I was looking for. I didn't want to copy the Aalto entirely, but just wanted a few contrasting colours that nodded to the mid-century.

Project Pots in Washed Denim, Harvest Orange, Mustard and Weathered Cedar

I decided I wasn't bothered enough to re-jig the legs into the iconic Aalto tripod, I'm always far too excited to get the paint open once I've decided to do a project anyway. I did manage to hold myself back long enough to lightly sand the top of the stools, then tape them off with Frog tape.


A couple of coats later and bobs your uncle, 4 much more interesting stools.




I have some varnish that I am toying with the idea of finishing the stools with, but currently I'm loving the matt finish of the Mini Moderns paint. So there you go, 4 lovely stools, see how they stack and unstack, and do stool-type things, quite stoolish. Who wants to sit on them?


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