A Stool By Alex
A few weeks ago I drove down to a beautiful part of the country to meet designer Alex Swain of ByAlex at his home in Surrey. Along with a few other bloggers I'd been invited over for dinner to find out more about the furniture he designs and manufactures. Alex was the perfect host and we had a lovely evening over a delicious relaxed mezze dinner.
Interestingly, and somewhat unusually, Alex is both a furniture designer and a graphic designer. His minimal and well considered 'A' stool design hints at his background in branding and typography, and it turns out that the letter 'A' is an ideal shape for use in furniture as well as text, its simplicity lending itself to conversion from a typographic element into a signature structural silhouette. It's esentially an extended triangle, which (as any engineer will tell you) is the simplest, strongest and most stable structure there is.
A couple of days later, a knock at the door revealed a delivery man carrying a box not much larger than a generously sized pizza that turned out to be an A Stool cleverly flat-packed into a smartly designed box. I wasted no time in assembling it - it was really easy to put together. It's a strong and stable piece of furniture that perfectly complements my bedroom dressing table (also made of birch) and it comes in handy as a side table or a stand for my ever-growing collection of plants.
Alex's guiding mantra is 'Purity by Design' and all his work clearly echoes his ambition for a simple functional elegance - made responsibly, made well, and made to last. The 'A' Stool is manufactured from responsibly sourced FSC/PEFC certified timber and being flat-packed means that costs (particularly for storage and delivery) are minimised. It's also available in a variety of styles - plain oak veneer, or a tough black, white or grey laminate finish.
In addition to the 'A' Stool, Alex has designed an 'A' Table, an 'A' Desk and an 'A' Coat Stand, along with other items that share the same values and sense of style. When I visited we were also given a taster of his latest design - a modular oak storage system - coming soon.
Many thanks for a great evening Alex, it was most enjoyable.