December 19th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
The last few days have brought a bounty of fluffy white snow setting us up for a beautiful first Christmas at Stonehurst. Ken went out to the old carriage shed and rescued this antique sign that marked entry to the Pine Top Ski Area from the 1940s to the 1960s. It’s now resting safely in our mudroom (er- entryway) accompanied by all the latest maps, magazines and brochures on Vermont travel (did I mention that we’re now an official Vermont Information Center? More about that later).
For a small ski area in a small town, it’s amazing how many people have stopped by to tell us stories of when they skied here at Pine Top 50 years ago. We had a lovely couple from Manhattan visit us a few weeks ago. They were here to shop for furniture but after looking out the window at the ski slopes and seeing the Pine Top sign, Marcia realized that she had skied here when she was a boarding student at Northfield School (now NMH). What a coincidence!
Today the sign out front welcomes people to Stonehurst, Vermont’s sustainable furniture showroom and art gallery. With all the freshly fallen snow, now is one of the prettiest times of year to visit Stonehurst. If you’re longing for the old fashioned Christmas you remember as a kid, stop by and see us. We’ve got hot chocolate, warm apple cider and of course there’s always a bottle of red in the wine rack. Christmas shopping was never this fun, even back in the 1950s!
December 16th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Christmas is drawing near. How did that happen so fast? If you’re like me and haven’t made much of a dent in your shopping yet, don’t panic. Stop by Stonehurst and experience the gift of “shopping relaxation”. Sounds like an oxy moron? Picture this: you get off Interstate 91 in Bernardston, MA and enjoy a scenic 6 mile drive along a lovely country road lined with old farmhouses, maple trees and scenic mountain vistas. Winding around the corner into Vernon, Vermont you come upon the snow-covered site of a lost ski area: Pine Top. It’s now the home of Vermont’s newest destination shopping experience, Stonehurst: an upscale furniture, home decor and fine arts showroom.
You turn in the driveway and tread up the entrance path to enter a 19th century homestead that’s been lovingly restored and renovated into a Vermont furniture store, showcasing authentic Vermont made home decor, gifts and artwork. Upon entry you are greeted by Liz who warmly welcomes you to Stonehurst and offers you a choice of hot chocolate, warm apple cider or a glass of chilled chardonnay. Now that’s what I call shopping relaxation.
What kind of Christmas gifts does a fine furniture store have to offer you ask? Here’s a partial list of the handmade home decor items you’ll find for sale at Stonehurst:
Take the stress out of your holiday shopping. Come shop with us at Stonehurst and remember what the holidays are really all about.
December 12th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
We’re sending thanks out to journalist Steve Noble and publisher, Lynn Barrett of Southern Vermont Arts Magazine for their insightful articles about three Vermont woodworking businesses. Vermont Woods Studios was featured along with Charles Shackleton of Shackleton Thomas and Gail Grycel of Twin Birch Woodworking.
Steve’s article, “Three Vermonters and Their Love of Wood” explores how many of us in Vermont’s artisan community share a vision of using the timeless power of wood and woodworking to change the world:
We appreciate Lynn’s support for our craft and her help in raising awareness about value of Vermont’s fine wood furniture business. Keep up with the latest news about the Arts in Southern Vermont and these 3 woodworking businesses:
December 11th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
2013, our first year at Stonehurst gave us another reason to study and analyze what our customers’ favorite American made furniture styles are. With limited space in our showroom, we wanted to display the very best selection of Vermont furniture, as defined by customer purchases. After looking through the sales statistics, we found these Top 3 American Furniture styles, which we’ll be featuring often at Stonehurst:
This Vermont Shaker bed, nightstand and chest are pretty accurate reproductions of the original Shaker style furniture crafted by communities of the United Society of Believers starting in the late 1700′s. Born here in the Northeast, this American furniture style is a simple, utilitarian design characterized by straight tapered legs and mushroom-shaped wooden knobs. Vermont furniture makers have become today’s authority on Shaker furniture and customers seeking a simple elegant, solid wood design have grown to love their work. It’s our top seller and customers are customizing it in their choice of cherry, walnut, maple and oak woods (preference is in that order). Sometimes customers will choose two contrasting wood colors like cherry and walnut or maple and walnut to trick it out– if there is such a thing for “Shaker furniture”.
This Contemporary Craftsman Bedroom Furniture collection is a modern rendition of the American craftsman and “arts and crafts” furniture that became popular in the late 19th century and remained prevalent through the 1930s. It’s handmade of real solid cherry wood with contrasting drawer pulls in solid walnut wood and reflects the true craftsmanship of this period. The finish on this collection is a traditional hand-rubbed oil and wax. If you like this contemporary craftsman style furniture, learn more about the details and craftsmanship here.
This mission sofa table and mission dining chair have the rectilinear design and heavy proportion characteristic of Mission style furniture which became popular in the late 19 century. At Vermont Woods Studios we have a traditional American Mission Furniture collection and a Modern Mission Furniture collection, both constructed of real solid woods in your choice of traditional oak or cherry, walnut or maple woods.
Stop by our new fine furniture showroom at Stonehurst anytime to see what we’ve got on hand in our customers’ favorite furniture styles: Shaker, Craftsman and Mission furniture.
December 10th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Christmas is the season for helping others in our communities. Here in Vernon and throughout Southeastern Vermont we have many great organizations that are looking for donations and support. Your gift of time, money, food or clothing could change someone’s life. Often it’s a matter of putting food on a family’s table or helping with heating expenses but it can also mean providing a little girl with the first warm coat she’s ever had.
A couple of our favorite local charities are Project Feed the Thousands, Toys for Tots and the Christmas Stocking sponsored by the Brattleboro Reformer. We have collection bins here at Stonehurst if you’re looking for a place to drop things off. We’ll be delivering items to the Vernon Police Department next Friday, December 20. By the way, if you haven’t checked out the PD’s Facebook page (“Ho ho ho from the Vernon PoPo“), it’s worth a look. Lots of good local information and weather-road conditions reported there.
Wishing you a very Merry Christmas season with lots of giving and hopefully some receiving too!
December 8th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Friday was a festive day at Vermont Woods Studios. We had our 8th annual company Christmas party and gift exchange. I picked up our tree at Rotary’s, annual Christmas Tree Sale during my Thursday night shift (the Rotary Club I belong to sells Christmas trees to raise money for it’s Gateway Scholarship Foundation). Ken brought the tree back to Stonehurst in his Beverly Hillbillies-style trailer and Douglas and our star sales staff put it up and decorated it. Looks pretty good, doesn’t it?
Of course the tree is local (from Craftsbury, VT) and it’s decorated with memorabilia from Pine Top, the lost ski area that our fine furniture and art gallery now sits upon. That’s a “rope tow” you see stretching from the bottom to the top of the tree and there are a couple stylish 1950s era skiers ascending it, courtesy of my thoughtful sister, Ann. There are also some beautiful handcrafted decorations (painted by our friend Donna Scully) which can be purchased in the showroom.
In the afternoon we had a potluck lunch with lots of delicious treats, including the most decadent brownies I think I’ve ever tasted. Following that (with a little work squeezed in between) was a Yankee swap of American made gifts (somehow Neville managed to take home the most coveted gift– a bottle of Jack Daniels).
After work we all reconvened at Terrazza Restaurant at the Greenfield Country Club in Greenfield, MA to finish off the days festivities. Does it sound like we do a lot of partying at Vermont Woods Studios? Well, we try to. Work hard, play occasionally. That’s not a bad recipe for success is it? Let us know on Facebook, what you do to celebrate Christmas with your colleagues.
December 3rd, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Yesterday we were excited to welcome Greg Worden of Vermont Artisans Designs to meet with us at Stonehurst. Greg’s art gallery on Main Street in downtown Brattleboro is one of Vermont’s best loved places to shop for high quality, handmade arts and crafts.
Currently Greg is featuring “Of Land & Local” an exhibit focusing on local and regional artists including Charlie Hunter, Deborah Lazar, Paul Stone, David Rohn, Jon Olsen, Steven Hileman and Alistair McCallum. These are well acclaimed artists and customers visiting from New York, Boston and beyond have come to know that regional art and specifically, Vermont art is offered here at great value.
At Vermont Woods Studios, we’re collaborating with Greg and other Brattleboro art galleries to help our customers (who travel considerable distances to Vermont to purchase high quality home decor) make the most of their trip. Those who visit Stonehurst are always delighted to learn they can acquire world-class original artwork just a few miles down the road at Vermont Artisans Designs.
Stay tuned to learn about other world class art galleries found in the one and only Brattleboro.
December 1st, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
The large Cherry Moon Storage Bed you’re looking at is a one-of-a-kind custom creation*. As with much of our furniture, this bed is a customized version of other pieces. In this case our Modern Incline Bed has been combined with our 8 Drawer Cherry Moon Dresser. The resulting storage bed was handcrafted in a small workshop just north of here in Montpelier, VT. Robin and his craftspeople used all solid cherry wood with black walnut accents, and coated it with a hand-rubbed, natural linseed oil finish. The bed headboard has a nice, gentle incline which makes reading or watching TV in bed super comfy.
Large storage beds have become popular with our Manhattan, Boston and Washington DC based clientele. They are a real space saver in urban apartments and townhomes. Worried about getting it up the elevator? No problem! Free shipping and white glove delivery is included in the price. And of course, Robin built this storage bed so it’s easily disassembled and reassembled when moving is necessary.
I think this is the Ultimate Cherry Storage Bed– it has 8 large drawers for storage! And unlike most of our furniture that is made to order, this bed is currently in our showroom and ready to be shipped to your home immediately. I daresay if you’re in New England, you could be sleeping on it for Christmas. You’d better hurry though because there’s only one of these babies and it’s on sale for 30% off. Here’s an idea: if you want it and think you might get in trouble for indulging, you could do what Ken always does to me… give it to your partner as a gift, right? Something to think about…
But we could make another one just like it, if you’re willing to wait for the customization. Give us a call to get things started!
November 30th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Michelle had a good reminder for us in her post earlier this week. Thanksgiving “was not originally intended to promote Christmas sales”. But I have to admit that Black Friday is the first time I think about buying holiday gifts. The reality for most of us is that when you have popular toys on your list or you’re shopping for something big (like appliances, cars, computers, furniture) you can’t ignore Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.
So, in contrast to all that holiday shopping madness, today we have Small Business Saturday. It’s a day to re-discover your local merchants and the character and richness they add to your community. They may not be able to beat the lowest prices you’ll find online but there’s an unmeasured value in their goods and services. How much is it worth to you to have a beautiful downtown? A local economy? Jobs for your friends and family? In Vermont it’s worth a lot. So we’ve come up with a list of the Top 10 Reasons to Shop Locally at your favorite downtown, mall or rural shopping outpost (like Stonehurst):
Have more of you own? Let us know on Facebook before you head downtown.
November 28th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
From all of us here at Vermont Woods Studios, we wish you and your family a very happy and peaceful Thanksgiving! Safe travels as you journey to Grandmother’s house or wherever the holiday may find you and your loved ones.
We have much to be thankful for in 2013… Michelle shared the details here.