Ever wondered why the most popular desks to put computers on tend to be made of wood? Or why wood-based/wood-looking coverings for devices go over better than plain hard plastic? It’s because there’s something inherently attractive about wood on a human level; connoting a more direct grounding with the world around oneself. Nor does it hurt that wood is more “green” than plastic or other man-made materials. So when you’ve one of those new slim laptops on your lap but need something better for the laptop to be resting on, it’s an easy choice to go with Grovemade’s Laptop Stand ($139 retail). The reasons will shortly become obvious.
The most obvious reason is that the Laptop Stand provides a comfortable working surface, but its color is calming as well. There’s a choice between walnut and maple (walnut being darker), with the natural “grain” appearance that the wood possesses being fully evident. There is a bit of steel — it’s a lip at the front end to keep the laptop from sliding off — but the overall “look” is attractive and “warm” and makes the space much more inviting to be standing or sitting at.
Now the reason for that steel lip is because the Laptop Stand is angled forward. This is so that when the laptop is sitting on top of it, and the stand itself is placed on a surface, the laptop’s screen is angled towards the viewer. FYI – that lip isn’t just plain metal through and through: the inside are where the laptop impacts against it has been cushioned through the application of a high quality, vegetable tanned leather addition (not going with cheap leather isn’t about what is seen but about what it feel like). So there’s no worries of the laptop getting scratched as a result of using the Stand.
But providing a helping “hand” should be offered to those working on standard desks which have a keyboard and monitor in front of them. That’s where the $99 Keyboard Tray comes into its own. Similar to the Laptop Stand, in that it comes in choice of walnut or maple, the Keyboard Tray is a bit more product specific. It expects an Apple wireless keyboard to be available, because the top is designed to snugly hold this particular brand name product in place (FYI, the keyboard slides into place). Made from solid wood, not some composite fiber, the Keyboard Tray condenses those items that have a tendency to become messy and move about the desk on their own: batteries, business cards, paper clips and other small paraphernalia all fit into depressions inside of the Tray. To access them you just pull up on the keyboard to do the reveal (obviously the keyboard is held in place and doesn’t move during this process or fall out!).
Both the Laptop Stand and the Keyboard Tray expel the “cold” from one’s working environment by adding useful accessories that make working more efficient while adding a touch of class. There’s nothing wrong with that.