The solid block side table is an evolutionary offshoot, we imagine, of the world's first table. That table must have been a tree stump or a medium-sized rock dragged inside for use. Today's block tables are likely more directly inspired by Le Corbusier's oak cube stool and Donald Judd's wood stools. Versatile enough to be moved from bedside to living with ease, they also work well as seating. Here are 10 of our favorites in a range of materials and finishes:
Above: Designed by Philipp Mainzer for e15 in 1996, the ST04 Backenzahnm Stool is a graceful rendition of the block. Carved out of the wood are four identical legs that taper at the base. The stool is available through Hive Modern for $1,700.
Above: The Small Log Side Table is cut from beechwood trunks and finished in a glossy black lacquer. Made in Italy, the side table is $395 from ABC Carpet & Home.
Above: Ohio Design's ode to Donald Judd, the Blocky Stool is a sculptural piece made entirely of solid wood and available in Radiata, Carbonized Radiata (shown), and oak for $200-$360.
Above: Rama Watana's Teak Stool is made in Thailand from responsibly harvested solid teak; $398 from Design Within Reach.
Above: West Elm's Natural Tree Stump Side Table are fabricated from fallen cypress trees that are sanded and finished to a smooth surface; $199 each.
Metallic and Stone Finishes
Above: From One & Co., the 47 Table is made from reclaimed Douglas fir sourced from old buildings and then coated in a low-VOC layer of silver—the 47 in the name comes from the atomic number of silver. The piece is 47 centimeters high; $1,200 from Design Within Reach.
Above: The Cement Grey Side Table is a mix of marble, granite, stone, and natural fiber. It's finished in a non-toxic wax; $149 from CB2.
Above: The Fresco Stainless Steel Side Table is a three-dimensional block of steel with a reflective surface; $395 from ABC Carpet & Home.
Above: From Anthropologie, the Zuvan Side Table is made from recycled wood washed in a silver or gold finish; $198 each.
Above: The Gus Modern Hot Rolled Cube is made from hot-rolled steel (pure steel is heated above its recrystallization temperature and pushed through rollers to form its shape). The blue patina is a result of oxidization; $645 at ABC Carpet & Home.