Wooden Dining Chairs | The 4 Hardwoods That Will Last Forever
From left: Modern High Back Dining Chair in Cherry WoodAmerican Mission Long Back Wave Chair in Oak Wood, the Classic Shaker Chair #2 in Walnut Wood and the Classic Shaker Chair #1 in Maple Wood.  Which wood would look best in your dining room?

Vermont is known for the quality, variety and style of it’s handmade solid wood dining chairs.  As we fill our new Stonehurst showroom up with furniture, Douglas is trying to provide lots of different examples of chair styles and woods.  We have 37 different dining chairs on our website and most of them are available in a couple different types of hardwood.  The best sellers are available for you to sit in and check for comfort and style.

I snapped this photo because it shows the 4 most popular hardwoods for dining chairs and customers often ask for advice on how to choose the best one.  From left, the chairs are the:

You can see that the cherry wood chair (far left) has a deep, rich reddish tone whereas the darker walnut chair  (3rd from left) is chocolate brown in color.  The oak chair (2nd from left) is a lighter wood but it still has lots of grain pattern in it.  The maple chair (far right) is the lightest wood, with minimal grain variation.

So how to choose the right wood color for your kitchen or dining room?  Well, of course you’re going to want to consider what your dining table is made of.  And how the chairs will fit into the rest of your dining area.  But don’t feel you have to match the chairs to the type of wood in your dining table or on your floor.  Here’s an example of mixing woods that interior designer, Susan Jay put together with our Modern High Back Dining Chairs.  Susan used 2 different woods (cherry and walnut) for her chairs and she customized them by sending us a bold, vibrant fabric to upholster them with.

Check out Houzz and Pinterest for more ideas on how to choose the hardwood that best suits your style for dining chairs.

Are you looking for a special color or stain for your wooden dining chairs?  Well as a general rule, Vermont craftsman are going to try and persuade you to love and accept the unique beauty that Mother Nature has bestowed upon her different wood species.  They (and we) will tend to recommend natural, clear wood finishes that allow the beauty of the wood to express itself.  We do however, understand the need for custom stains and finishes and can often accommodate special requests.  Try browsing through our dining chairs — many have a pull down menu of stain options.  If you don’t find what you want, give Liz or Sean for help.  They’re experts at helping customers get exactly what they’re looking for.

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.

Did you know that we recently painted the front doors of Stonehurst? We decided on a color that was bright, unique, and fitting to the beauty of the space. In the spirit of our newest renovation, this blog post explains some common symbolism behind several eclectic front door colors.

What is the symbolism of a red door?
Red… bold,  fierce!

1. Red: In Feng Shui, a red door means “welcome!” It’s full of powerful, warm energy. According to folklore, if a weary traveler stumbled upon a home with a red door, they would stop there and surely be welcomed with a good meal and a good nights sleep. A red door is great for people who have lots of guests visiting their home, and who aren’t afraid to make a statement.

What does a blue front door symbolize?
Blue…intention, creation, prosperity!

2. Blue:  As you can imagine, the color blue inspires a feeling of calm and peace to those who see it, and beyond that, a blue door welcomes abundance, growth,  and prosperity! Feng Shui suggests that when you walk through a blue door, you can more easily concentrate, focus on personal endeavors, and practice creativity!

What does a yellow door symbolize?
Yellow… clarity, intellect, happiness!

3. Yellow: Yellow can cheer you up, fill you with hope, and give you enhanced mental clarity. It also has a warm, nurturing tone. Use a yellow door if you want your home to always be a happy retreat from the outside world.

what does a green door say about you?
Green… Natural, Balanced, Transformative.

4. Green: Green is representative of earth, and brings in a feeling of the natural world. Green is associated with growth, balance, and total harmony. Use a green door if you always want to feel a little closer to mother earth!

What does a purple door symbolize?
Purple… relaxed, spiritual, inquisitive.

5. Purple: Purple is actually one of the most popular front door colors, surprisingly! Purple or violet hued doors are commonly associated with spiritual energy, and relaxed, meditative spaces. Sometimes purple doors are used in religious spaces like temples and churches! Purple would be an ideal color for you if you use your home as a low-energy place for quiet, spiritual contemplation, and meditation.

What does a white door mean in feng shui?
White…new, clean, fresh!

6. White: As you can probably imagine, a white door symbolizes purity, tradition, & freshness. It’s a color that represents things that are untouched and clean! Painting your door white is a good idea if you are someone who loves traditional style, or someone who wants to keep your home looking pristine. Some people say that if you are looking for a fresh start, or if you have just started a new phase in your life whether it be a marriage, a new baby, or a new job– to paint your door white to “start over” and reflect your new life!

 

Want to know which one of these colors we decided on for the front doors of Stonehurst? Keep your eye out for a new blog, coming early next week! :)

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.

American Made Craftsman Style Furniture | Real Solid Wood | Vermont

Today’s Vermont made mission, craftsman and arts & crafts style furniture ranges from the traditional American Mission Furniture Collection to our transitional Cherry Moon Furniture Collection and Modern American Dining Furniture (shown above).

Looking for top quality, craftsman furniture that’s American made?  Why not start your search in Vermont?  We’ve gathered up an encyclopedia of facts about Vermont craftsmanship and state’s 200+ year history as a maker of high quality, solid wood furniture.  Here’s an exceprt:

Vermont is the Fine Furniture Capital of America. The Green Mountain State is increasingly recognized as the country’s leader in high quality, handmade wood furniture. Vermont boasts over 1000 furniture companies plus 2000 independent woodworkers operating out of small shops, barns and garages. They produce a diverse collection of wood furnishings for every taste and budget and together they have earned a world-wide reputation for integrity, authenticity and green design.

Craftsman furniture is a favorite style amongst Vermont woodworkers and one of my personal favorites.  At Vermont Woods Studios we showcase a variety of Mission, Craftsman and Arts & Crafts Furniture designed and built by our state’s fine furniture makers.

What Defines Craftsman Furniture?

Originally, mission and craftsman furniture was characterized by rectilinear design, simple, straight construction, heavy proportion and exposed joinery, often using medium or dark stained oak. Drawer pulls were usually simple round brass rings or rectangular back plates of solid brass with canted corners and an oval bail handle.  But like all things, craftsman furniture has evolved.

Today’s Vermont made mission, craftsman and arts & crafts style furniture ranges from the traditional American Mission Furniture Collection to our Cherry Moon Furniture Collection which incorporates subtle curves in an Asian design to the modern Contemporary Craftsman furniture, also somewhat curvy but still simple and elegant.  Rather than fancy, ornate scrolling or carving, craftsman furniture emphasizes fine workmanship in the form of refined style, perfect proportions, exposed joinery and top quality wood selection.

Need some ideas for how to put together your own unique craftsman style home decor?  Check out this Pinterest craftsman board, or browse through Arts and Crafts.  And if you’re looking for craftsman style lighting to complement your furniture, Vermont’s own Hubbardton Forge is the authority on that subject.  Here’s a Pinterest board with some great lighting ideas.

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.

A Custom Dining Table for a Banquette | Handmade in Vermont
Recently Barbara K came to us looking for a custom banquette table for her kitchen. This type of customization is something we can do quite easily as every piece of our furniture is made to order.  Thanks for the photo, Barbara!

Handmade custom tables are a common request for the craftspeople at Vermont Woods Studios Fine Furniture.  Recently Barbara K came to us looking for custom banquette tables for her kitchen.  Banquette seating is custom built, usually into a corner, along a wall or in front of a window.  Depending on the design of the seating, the banquette table must be custom made too.  Over the years, we’ve had many requests to customize existing tables and make them a little taller, shorter, longer, wider and so on.  This type of customization is something we can do quite easily as every piece of our furniture is made to order.

Here’s an excerpt from Barbara’s feedback about her new dining table:

We just absolutely love our table. You were so nice to work with and the delivery men were just delightful. They made sure our table was level before they left.  We ordered the table because we needed a certain height for the banquette. Vermont Wood Studios was the only place we found that could give us this. We would definitely recommend you!!     Barbara K

If you’re searching for banquette tables and seating, have a look at these photos on Houzz, Better Homes and Gardens and Pinterest.  And if you need a custom banquette table, browse through our selection of made to order dining tables and give Liz a call to discuss dimensions and pricing.  Often we can customize tables like this for little or no extra charge.

 

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.

Vermont Furniture Showroom | Before the Renovation
The country kitchen at Stonehurst, as it was for many years.  Traditional pine cupboards and appliances were perfect when Stonehurst served as a farmhouse, boarding house, four seasons resort, ski area and private residence. 

We’re trucking right along in our quest to transform Stonehurst from a private residence to a fine furniture and art gallery that showcases Vermont made sustainable home decor products.  There are a whole host of finishing touches still in progress but I thought I’d share some before and after pictures of spaces where the renovation is pretty well complete.  First up:  the kitchen, my personal favorite part of the transformation.  The “before” kitchen was functional but the layout didn’t provide much opportunity for windows to overlook the spectacular view out back.

Vermont Furniture Showroom | Stonehurst Before and After
Now Stonehurst is a fine furniture and art gallery, showcasing Vermont made sustainable home decor products, so no kitchen is needed.  We replaced the cabinets and appliances with windows and an open atrium to take advantage of the view.

Since the kitchen is the entry into the building, we wanted to treat our customers to a cheerful space where they could relax and unwind after a long trip up from the city (customers usually travel from Boston, New York, Washington DC and beyond).  The wall of windows we installed puts Vermont’s green mountains and meadows  front and center when customers step inside.  It’s pretty clear:  you’re in Vermont now.  Time to slow down and enjoy nature at it’s finest.

Where Does Wood furniture Come From?

With sustainable forestry being at the heart of our mission at Vermont Woods Studios, one of the main things we’re trying to do with Stonehurst is raise awareness about where your furniture comes from.  So the view of Vermont’s Green Mountain Forest often opens up a conversation about legally, sustainably harvested wood.  Loryn is working on an educational display which will be installed on the sunroom wall to tell the story of how our furniture gets from sustainably-managed forests to your home.

Kudos to Our Design and Construction Team

I can’t start showing before and after photos without recognizing and thanking our architect, Jeremy Coleman of Brattleboro, VT and builder, Bob Furlone of American Construction.  They have done a tremendous job, especially in facing all the realities involved in transforming and modernizing a 200+ year old farmhouse.  They’ve also been really knowledgeable in helping us select all Vermont made materials whenever possible.  The wall of windows shown above was custom made by Green Mountain Window in Rutland VT and the slate floor was mined locally by Vermont Slate Company.

Let me know what you think of the transformation in the comments section below or on Facebook.  Over the next couple weeks, I’ll post before and after photos of the:

  • barn–now a dining room showroom
  • boarding house– now a bedroom showroom
  • kids bedroom– now a kitchenette for our staff
  • several bedrooms– now administrative offices”
  • exterior paint color– from red to white, and
  • the parlor– which is still a parlor

I hope you’ll be as excited about this new Vermont fine furniture and art gallery as we are.  Come and visit us to see it all up close and personal!  Be sure to bring a bottle of wine and a picnic lunch so you can sit out back and enjoy the view.

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.