Vermont Woods Studios Handmade Furniture

Vermont Artisans

Vermont’s Luxury Linen Store: Anichini Inc.

February 24th, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh

Anichini | Textiles and Linens | Luxury Home Decor from Vermont

“Think sublime style, unstinting details, old-world craftsmanship. The charm of classic lines and modern style. Sensuous textures and saturated colors that dress your home, your life. This is the essence of ANICHINI.”  Check out their new design center in Quechee, VT where I took this snapshot.  Every direction you look is more charming than the last!

No tour of Vermont’s luxury home decor brands would be complete without a visit to Anichini, Inc.  The Green Mountain State is home to this mecca for high end interior designers who feather the nests of the rich and famous.  The company, founded 26 years ago by Susan Dollenmaier, has become the “most prestigious brand of luxury textiles and home furnishings”.  It is a full spectrum textile company specializing in rare and handcrafted fabrics and products.  I visited Anichini’s new design center in Quechee, VT last week while on my tour of Vermont’s top luxury home decor brands.  May I just say right here and now that I have never seen a collection of such beautiful and luxurious fabrics in all my life?  What an indulgence for the senses.  All of them… not just sight…  so many different textures and subtle fragrances of linens, cottons, wool, cashmere and other fibers.  Wow.

How would these luxurious Anichini linens, fabrics and textiles look in your home?

“In an era where the word “luxury” is used to describe everything from a bus ride to a bottle of shampoo, ANICHINI has raised the bar on the definition of “luxury” with textiles that are the ultimate in opulence and craftsmanship.”  How would these luxurious Anichini linens, fabrics and textiles look in your home?

Anichini Inc. imports fabrics (Muga silks from Assam, Tibetan cashmere woven in Nepal,  Ottoman inspired velvets and tapestries from Turkey,  Renaissance replications from Umbria, Linen from Lithuania,  Woven silks from Morocco) because they are simply unavailable in the USA.  However, as shown in this video (The Craftsmanship of Rural Women) those fabrics are sewn here in Vermont by a group of talented seamstresses in Turnbridge.

Anichini Luxury Bedding | Made in Vermont

Found in the linen closets of royal palaces and celebrities around the world, Anichini fabrics round out Vermont’s luxury home decor brand portfolio.  They are future heirlooms that celebrate the “extraordinary designs, rare materials, and traditional techniques that are soon to be lost. ”  Come see them for yourself!  We hope to be featuring a nice selection of Anichini linens at Stonehurst, which will soon be your launch pad into the world of Vermont’s authentic, handcrafted home furnishings.

This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios.  Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

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Charlie Shackleton and the Naked Table Project

February 12th, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh

Logging with Horses in Vermont | Naked Table Project | Charles Shackleton

“To fully understand the process of sustainably making furniture, you must go into the forest.   The woodlands tour describes how to identify Sugar Maples, low impact forestry principles, and demonstrations on horse-drawn logging. It will change the way you see furniture forever”   …. Charles Shackleton

Last week on my tour of luxury Vermont home decor companies I stopped to visit Charles Shackleton and his wife Miranda Thomas at their studios in Bridgewater, Vermont.  Charlie is perhaps one of Vermonts most beloved furniture makers.  He’s famous for his steadfast belief in the integrity and enduring value of true handcrafted furniture.  You won’t find cnc routers in Charlie’s shop!  Everything is traditionally carved and crafted by hand, making each piece a unique work of art. Dennis pointed out that Charlie is making the Chippendales of tomorrow.  It’s the stuff Christie’s and Sotheby’s will be competing for in years to come.

Charlie Shackleton's Naked Table Project | King Arthur Board of Directors

I arrived at Shackleton-Thomas just as a Naked Table project was beginning.  The lucky participants were the board of directors for King Arthur Flour (bet you didn’t know that was a Vermont company).  They were building tables for their conference room.

What’s a Naked Table?

“We invite businesses, friends and families to our workshops to make tables for themselves to last for ages to come. Each piece in the Naked Collection is made from the iconic Sugar Maple harvested in the forests we visit (inverse from conventional methods of deforesting and sourcing wood from anywhere in the world)…  The table has come to symbolize our community’s connection to our local environment and our ability to make something of it.”  … Charles Shackleton

 

Pete Michelinie os Shackleton Thomas Fine Furniture in Bridgewater, VT

Charlie Shackleton (left) and Pete Michelinie of Shackleton Thomas Fine Furniture in Bridgewater, VT.  Pete was trained at the renowned North Bennett Street Furniture School in Boston.  He’s part of an elite team of craftspeople who create heirloom quality furniture and pottery at Shackleton-Thomas.

The Work of Human Hands

Charlie notes that humans have a natural tendency to want to make things, using their hands in particular.  “It’s a satisfying “buzz” of creativity, comparable to baking a loaf of bread from the grains of a wheat plant.  When a finished piece expresses our creativity, either through the natural beauty of the wood, the design or the marks of shaping left by the human hand, it sends a message.  In these times when so much is mass produced in factories by automated machines on the other side of the world, many are treasuring that message and the natural resources that surround it..”

Visit the Shackleton Thomas store in Bridgewater, VT or their website to learn more and shop.  Next week:  a quiz about Miranda’s pottery.  Hint: yes it is displayed in the White House and the Vatican in addition to dozens of other prestigious locations around the world.

Related posts: Touring Vermont’s Luxury Home Decor Brands    A visit to Simon Pearce

This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios.  Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, a 200 year old farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

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A Visit to Simon Pearce Glassware

February 9th, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh

Simon Pearce | Handblown Glassware | Made in Vermont

Luxury home decor aficionados:  do you long for days past when real, honest, human craftsmanship was the means of producing quality, long lasting goods for your home?  Are you tired of disposable everything and looking to add authenticity and character to your home– a few things with substance that are designed to be enjoyed forever?  Well Vermont has a treat for you.  Four of America’s top luxury home decor brands are headquartered in the middle of the Green Mountain state– all within a comfortable driving distance of each other.  I made the tour myself last week, while preparing our Stonehurst gallery to begin carrying a selection of items from each company.  Here is what I found at my first stop, Simon Pearce.

Simon Pearce Glassware

With the rich history of Irish glass blower Simon Pearce behind it, this company leads the way in high end, hand blown glass and table ware.  Headquartered in Windsor Vermont, Simon Pearce creates glass and ceramic “products that are beautifully designed, produced with premium quality materials and time-honored techniques and intended for a lifetime of everyday use”.

Simon Pearce | Glass Blower | Watch it Being Made in Windsor and Quechee Vermont

Simon Pearce high quality glass bowls, goblets and vases are hand blown by skilled artisans and designed to last a lifetime.  I took this picture in Windsor, VT but you can also see glassblowing (and pottery making) at their beautiful facility in Quechee, VT.

Simon Pearce Pottery

Simon Pearce Pottery and Stoneware

The Simon Pearce pottery and stoneware collection includes table lamps, vases, pitchers, dinnerware and gifts.  Watch it being made in Windsor and/or Quechee, VT.

Learn more about Simon Pearce, his story and products on his website.  Or better yet, come up to Vermont for a visit!  You can use Stonehurst, our fine furniture, home decor and art gallery as a launchpad to Simon Pearce and the rest of Vermont’s luxury home decor companies.

Restaurant at Simon Pearce

It takes a ton of energy to make glass so Simon Pearce located his facility on a falls and installed hydro power.  Be sure to call for reservations if you’d like to dine at that beautiful restaurant that juts out over the falls. Both food and view are spectacular.

The other three luxury home decor brands I’m thinking of?  Stay tuned, there’s more to come but you’ll find hints on Kelsey’s new Vermont luxury Pinterest board.  Let us know on our Facebook, about any other brands you’d like to learn more about.

This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios.  Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, a 200 year old farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

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Touring Vermont’s Luxury Home Decor Brands

February 8th, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh

Luxury Home Decor from Vermont

Vermont is home to these luxury home decor brands:  Anichini linens, Simon Pearce glassware, Shackleton Thomas furniture and pottery and Hubbardton Forge lighting.  We look forward to offering them all in one place at Stonehurst.

Last week I managed to escape from the office and take a road trip.  The excuse (er… purpose) was to visit Vermont’s top luxury home decor businesses.  Maybe this won’t surprise you — it turns out that in addition to being the fine furniture capital of America, Vermont is second to none in many other types of authentic, handmade home decor.  The Green Mountain State hosts hand blown glass blower Simon Pearce, hand forged lighting manufacturer, Hubbardton Forge, hand loomed artisanal fabrics maker, Anichini and handcrafted furniture and pottery maker, Shackleton Thomas.

We felt these companies should be featured at Stonehurst, making it a complete showroom for Vermont’s best, high quality, handcrafted home goods.  So I was chosen as the lucky one to make the rounds and pitch the idea.  I was met with nothing but kindness and enthusiasm.  Wendy Fannin at Hubbardton Forge, Heather Carey at Anichini, Maria Parrado at Simon Pearce, Charlie Shackleton and Miranda Thomas were all very supportive of our plans (thanks guys!).

Over the next few months we’ll be hard at work, adding these new products to our showroom.  A nice selection of items will also be added to our online store.  Stay tuned for more details as they unfold!

Related posts: A visit to Shackleton Thomas    A visit to Simon Pearce

This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios.  Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, a 200 year old farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

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Nina Markiw: Welcome to the Woods

February 4th, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh

Nina Markiw | Welcome to Vermont Woods Studios Fine Furniture

Today it’s my great pleasure to welcome our newest team member, Nina Narkiw to Vermont Woods Studios.  As a professional photographer, Nina will be working with Dennis and Kelsey in our Marketing department.  Her focus will be on conveying the beauty and quality of Vermont’s fine furniture to those who are unable to visit our Stonehurst showroom and see it in person.

A graduate of Johnson State College with a BA in Studio Art and a concentration in photography, Nina made the Presidents List and graduated magna cum laude.  She owns White Blossom Art, a small business that offers wedding photography, fine art photography and paintings.  In her “spare time” Nina helps in the family’s floral business Checkerberry Hill, which specializes in custom floral designs for weddings and other special events.

Sheep | Nina Markiw | Vermont Fine Artist and Photographer

Here’s one of my favorite photos by Nina, as featured on her website White Blossom Art.

A babbling brook and autumn leaves by Nina Markiw

Photography isn’t her only expertise.  Nina also has a passion for painting.

For Nina, “art is a way of life and not just a hobby”.  At Vermont Woods Studios we feel very lucky to have her caliber of talent and drive on our team.  Please join me in extending a warm welcome to Nina on our Facebook!

This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios.  Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

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Vermont Woodworking Featured in Southern Vermont Arts Magazine

December 12th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh

Vermont Arts Magazine Features Woodworkers, Winter 2013We’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:

  • Gail, a professionally trained musician who learned woodworking and built her own house, is now teaching the craft to other women.
  • Charlie, a master craftsman (who traveled to Vermont from Dublin Ireland with his friend famed glass blower, Simon Pearce) uses his world-class fine furniture (and wife Miranda’s pottery) to share his passion for authenticity, sustainability and social responsibility.
  • And Vermont Woods Studios, where we reach out across America through our website to bring furniture buyers into Vermont so they can experience the timeless quality and beauty of handmade wood furniture.

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:

 

 

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The 35th Annual Putney Craft Tour

November 26th, 2013 by Kelsey Eaton

Caitlin Burch working glass with a torch (Lampwork).

Putney Artist Caitlin Burch working glass with a torch (Lampwork).

Southern Vermont is sometimes overlooked. It’s hard to “compete” against the north, with all of the amazing food and fun that you can find in Burlington, Montpelier, Woodstock and all of the other great Northern Vermont towns. While I don’t think that it’s fair to call it competition, I do believe that you will find that Vermont experience you are looking for, right here in the south! Southern Vermont has many great events that are worth a trip, especially for those who love Vermont craftsmanship and artisan work.

One might not expect a rural Vermont town to have a vibrant arts community– but it is places like Putney that lead the way for a flourishing arts scene in Southern Vermont. On Friday, Saturday and Sunday (November 29th-Decmeber 1st) you have the opportunity to meet some of Vermont’s most prominent artists at the 35th annual Putney Craft Tour!

 

detail of hand-dyed fabric hanging by Carlene Raper

Detail of hand-dyed fabric hanging by Carlene Raper

 

The Putney craft tour is the artisan lovers dream– with a plethora of different mediums to learn about and explore; from woodwork, to quilting, to glass work, pottery, painting, handmade jewelery, and more!

This is a wonderful Vermont travel destination, where you have the opportunity to enjoy the simple pleasures of driving through the back roads of Southeastern Vermont at your own pace. Spend an hour, spend a whole day, or spend the whole weekend learning about & enjoying the unique works of art at each studio. This experience of exploration is a reason to travel in itself. You may not find a friendlier and more welcoming community of artists anywhere else!

Putney is only a short drive away from us here at Stonehurst, and we’d love to invite you to visit us and see some of the eclectic artisan furniture pieces & original artwork, that we have in our showroom!

To learn more about the Putney Craft Tour, visit their website or connect with them on Facebook.

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Susan Osgood: Brattleboro Artist’s Egyptian Show

November 21st, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh

EGYPT IN THE ART OF SUSAN OSGOOD

Brattleboro based artist Susan Osgood prepares for gallery opening at the University of Porto’s exhibition gallery in Porto, Portugal along with fellow artist Eberhard Dziobek.  You can also see a nice selection of Susan’s original artwork at Stonehurst, Vermont’s newest Fine Furniture and Art Gallery.

Tomb KV 63, is the first Egyptian tomb to be discovered in Luxor, since King Tut’s tomb in 1922.  A major event in history and it was recorded by Brattlboro’s own, artist Susan Osgood.  We’ve highlighted Susan’s work before but now we wanted to let you know that she’s currently being celebrated at the University of Porto’s exhibition galleries, in Porto, Portugal through December 20, 2013.  Here’s your excuse for a holiday trip to Europe!

Susan Osgood | Brattleboro Vermont Artist | Egyptian Art | KV 63

It’s exciting to see Susan’s name on the marquis at the University of Porto’s exhibition gallery in Porto, Portugal.  Her exhibition runs from now until Dec 20. 

First jump on over to Susan’s new Facebook page to see behind the scenes details of the exhibition.  Susan has been working in Luxor at the KV 63 tomb site on and off for several years, drawing the coffins “under remains of workmen’s huts, down a 20-foot shaft, in a rock cut chamber along with two gilded coffinettes and 28 large sealed ceramic storage jars”.  Her drawing process begins at the temple wall, penciling over hieroglyphs and figures on a large black and white photograph of the scene.  Often the work is completed in Vermont at Susan’s Brattleboro studio which, fortunately for us, is quite close to our fine furniture and art gallery in Vernon, VT.  So if you can’t make the trip to Portugal, come see Susan Osgood’s original artwork at Stonehurst It’s a great opportunity to see (and purchase) world class art in your own backyard.

 

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Micah Ranquist’s Hand-Turned Wooden Pens

October 26th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh

Vermont Woodworker, Micah Ranquist

Ken welcomes Micah Ranquist to Stonehurst.  Micah is a local artisan who crafts beautiful handmade wooden pens using a lathe.  He began losing his sight at age 3 but that hasn’t stopped Micah from creating elegant pens, bowls and other collectibles made from wood. 

Last week we welcomed Vermont woodworker, Micah Ranquist into our clan of local artisans at Stonehurst.  Micah is a wood turner who crafts unique wooden pens, bowls and wine stoppers using a lathe.  He works out of a small shop in Brattleboro, Vermont using local and exotic woods to create one-of-a-kind works of art.

Micah has been visually impaired since early in his life.  He began slowly losing his vision at age 3 and has little vision left, but he hasn’t let that stop him from doing things he loves.  He has taught himself to play several instruments including guitar, keyboard and bag pipes.  When not turning wood, Micah can often be found making music or taking care of his 2 young children.

Micah Ranquist | Handmade Wooden Pens | Vermont Woods Studios

Micah works with cherry burl, cypress and many other species to create these unique handmade wooden pens.  “I grew up in Florida and in Maine, thereby I like using materials that reflect both places”. 

Often called a Renaissance man, Micah explains his gift for woodworking as:  “I simply enjoy doing things with my hands, and things that have a great amount of history in our world”.  Stop by and see Micah’s pens at Stonehurt, Vermont’s newest artisan gallery located in Vernon, VT.

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Celebrate American Craft Month in Vermont

October 9th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh

American Craft Week | Vermont Craft Month | Stonehurst Fine Arts Gallery

At Stonehurst Fine Furniture and Art Gallery we’re celebrating American Craft Week  and Vermont Craft Month with the help of artisans like Donna Scully (painted the watering can), Linda Marcille (painted the jazz on silk) and even our own Ken Farabaugh (carefully crafted all those colorful wooden cutting boards).

All across the USA, craftspeople and those who love their work are celebrating American Craft Week October 4-13.  In Vermont we extend our celebration to the whole month of October which the Governor has proclaimed American Craft Month.

Our friend Greg Worden at Vermont Artisans Designs on Main Street in Brattleboro was influential in making that happen.  He’s also one of the founders of Craft Retailers & Artists for Tomorrow (CRAFT), the non-profit organization that sponsors Craft Week.  Members of CRAFT are dedicated to presenting artistic work with one common characteristic– it’s handmade in the USA:

“American Craft enriches our homes, wardrobes, offices and public spaces. It contributes to our nation’s economy, our balance of trade, and the fabric of our national history. It is original, beautiful and enduring, so let’s tell the world!”

This seems like a good opportunity to publicly thank Greg for his leadership and tireless efforts in promoting the top artists and craftspeople in Vermont and throughout New England.  If you love high end crafts and fine art but you haven’t already been to Greg’s Vermont Artisans Designs– put it on your to do list!  Here’s a short video of Greg’s gallery.  It’s worth a trip, as testified on his website by art lovers from across America.

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