Reiko Tanabe was born in Tokyo in 1934. She graduated from the Jyoshibi University of Art and Design in 1957. A few years later in 1961, she was awarded a prize in the first Tendo Mokko woodwork furniture design competition for her Murai Stool (Murai being her maiden name). It quickly became a top-selling item for Tendo Mokko and is still a prized item for many collectors and designers. The simple and beautiful shape is created by combining three pieces of moulded plywood of the same form without metal fittings. Featuring a beautiful grain of teak meeting towards the centre and meticulously finished details. The top surface is horizontal, so either side can be faced down. A wide base makes it stable and can be used as a chair, side table, or even stacked as a shelf. The simple and understated design stimulates the imagination of the user. The Murai Stool was added to the permanent exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1967. Reiko established the Tanabe Reiko Design Office focusing on architectural work and interior design for offices, hospitals, and houses.