Stooling Around

As many of you know, we recently built some reading tables for the Miller Library at Colby College. The tables were designed by Scott Teas, an architect at TFH Architects, with collaboration from Bill Huston. After the first order was delivered, a second order was placed as the college is making improvements to the library a little at a time. 

The tables were a huge success. Not only did the library staff love the tables, but we are told that the seats at the new tables are always the first to fill in, that more students stay at the library longer now that the tables are in place, and more students come to the library to study than before. It is amazing what an impact a slight change to an environment, like a handful of new tables, can make. 

We are humbled. 

We are also pleased that Colby wants to continue with our work as they make more changes, piece by piece. Most recently we were asked to design a new reference desk for the library. We met with the library director and staff to get a sense of their needs as a team and as individuals. We listened to their ideas; sometimes in unison and sometimes at odds. We measured and took pictures of the existing desk. 

The design of the desk ties in nicely with the new tables. A large desktop enables staff to help students one on one or in small groups. There is room for storage underneath and behind the desk, and the computer wiring chases to the floor where it isn’t in the way. 

The backside of the desk morphed into a counter with stools where students and staff can have conversations and review materials.  The taller counter at the back of the desk also helps to reduce distraction to the students studying at the tables directly behind the reference desk.

Then, we needed to design some stools. The library director visited our showroom and saw a sample of a custom stool that Saer Huston had designed for a client’s home in Portland. After a few minor tweaks, the Colby Stool was born.

With steel frames on the rungs and a great leather cushion, the Colby Stool is comfortable, practical, not too heavy and VERY cool. We will list the Colby stool as a standard item on our website in the near future.