New-vermont-home-search

Do you think this farmhouse would make a good home for Vermont Woods Studios Fine Furniture?

Vermont Woods Studios is growing.  Maybe you've noticed that we have a few new faces in our small office/furniture showroom on Fort Bridgeman Road in Vernon.  There are 9 of us now, plus a couple summer interns.  Hard to believe!

Everyone's being a real good sport about the occasional crowding.  On nice days we think up excuses to work outside at the picnic (conference) table and that helps.  But clearly it's time to scout around for a new home.

This is one possibility we're looking at.  It's an old (circa 1800) farmhouse that was transformed into a local ski area in the 1940s.  Great story. 

We're looking at a number of other options as well and I'll share more pictures as we journey through the process of finding the one that works best for us.  Stay tuned and let me know what you think on our Facebook page.

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.

Skyline

 

 

Part of our feasibility study to see if the Skyline property on Vermont's Hogback Mountain would work for Vermont Woods Studios is anaylzing the possibility of co-locating a cafe or wine bar with the furniture showroom. It's not a real natural combination, is it (furniture and food)?

 

 

But two factors keep pointing to the pairing of these functions at Skyline:

 

 

  • The Skyline location, on top of Hogback Mountain, with it's 100 mile view of the Green Mountain Forest offers what I've been looking for to raise awareness about where your wood furniture comes from.  After all, you can buy imported wood furniture anywhere but it's probably going to be made from illegally harvested trees, clear-cut from the world's rapidly disappearing tropical rainforests.  Our customers are interested in acquiring heirloom quality, Vermont-made furniture that's crafted from natural, solid, wood that's been sustainably harvested from beautiful, well-managed American forests (more about green, environmental concerns here). 
  • The other factor is that:  How could  you operate ANYTHING at Skyline without inviting people to come up and enjoy the view?  It would be kinda like that commercial for Ally bank where the guy asks 2 little girls if they'd like a pony. He shows a real pony to one of the girls but only gives her a little figurine instead.  The announcer says something like:  "even kids know it's wrong to hold out on somebody."  That's how I'd feel having a business at Skyline that didn't offer people a place to relax and enjoy the view with a cup of tea or a glass of wine.

So now we're trying to figure out how to strategically pair a Vermont-made furniture showroom with a cafe or wine bar.  Allocating space is the conundrum of the day.  60% furniture — 40% cafe? Additional seasonal seating outside?  I guess the answers will reveal themselves as we do our research. 

Got ideas?  Suggestions? Interested in running an upscale cafe at Skyline?  Contact us on Facebook and jump into the conversation.  We'll be looking for local help as we navigate through the feasibility study and (hopefully) beyond.

 

 

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.

Old-skyline-sign.jpgKen and I are under contract at Vermont Woods Studios to purchase the old Skyline Restaurant on Hogback Mountain in Marlboro, Vermont for use as a small furniture showroom, administrative office and cafe.  Right now our emphasis is on conducting a feasibility study to see if the property can be renovated to meet our needs. 

If you're local to Southeastern Vermont, you no-doubt remember eating a delicious, hearty breakfast at Skyline while enjoying the incredible 100 Mile view.  It was the kind of place you thought would always be there for you, the next time you were in the neighborhood. I'm not sure why the restaurant shut down (about 4 years ago?) but it's in pretty bad shape at the moment.

We've been working with Jeremy Coleman of J Coleman & Company Architects on evalutaing the condition of Skyline's heating, air conditioning, plumbing and structure these past couple weeks to see which systems will have to be totally gutted and replaced and which, if any may be partially salvaged.  It looks to me like there will be a lot of replacement. 

If you're in the area or you're interested in green building or the story of Skyline, keep an eye on our project through this blog and Facebook.  We'll be posting progress as we go.  If Skyline is a feasible location for a Vermont made furniture showroom and we do end up purchasing the property, we'll be looking for local help to transform it.  Contact us if you interested in getting involved.

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.

Kringle-candle-restaurantWe were coming home from Greenfield MA on Sunday after Riley’s basketball game and decided to travel home along Route 5, through Bernardston.  I was surprised to see how much progress they’ve made on the new Kringle Candle Company– where the old Harley Davidson shop used to be.

 

 

It is beautiful!  We had been through the candle shop last year but now there are several additional shops across the street– it’s like a little village.

 

 

Kringle-outdoor-seating-1The old farmhouse that sits south of the Harley shop has been transformed into an elegant Farm Table Restaurant that extends to outdoor eating areas filled with POLYWOOD Euro Furniture and decorated with colorful Fall mums and pumpkins.

 

In their brochures they note that Mike and Mick Kittredge founded the company on green principles:

  • The restaurant serves all local organic foods
  • The candle containers are designed for re-use
  • Product packaging is environmentally friendly and recycled when possible

 

 

Kringle-landscaping-2That’s where there is some commonality between the Kringle Candle Company and Vermont Woods Studios– in our shared green philosophy.  Our vision for our new location (be it Skyline or elsewhere) is one that honors our natural world and serves to raise awareness about the green causes we have always been passionate about:  forest conservation and wildlife protection.  I think Kringle Candle is an appropriate benchmark for us.  We could learn a lot from these folks.

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.

Ken-skylineThis past weekend was the most beautiful Columbus Day I can remember.  After suffering through the wake of Hurricane Irene, Vermonters really deserved a break.  And we got one.  Temperatures were around 80F and the sun shined all weekend.

 

Ken and I ventured out to leaf peep and give his new hip a whirl.  He's still a bit wobbly, but he generally gets where he wants to go.

 

This photo was taken at the property we're researching to buy for Vermont Woods Studios.  It's the old Skyline Restaurant on Hogback Mountain in Marlboro VT on Route 9 between Wilmington and Brattleboro.

 

 

Ken-marinaAfter a morning of traipsing around Skyline looking at heating, ventillation, air conditioning and plumbing systems we headed into Brattleboro, stopped at Grafton Cheese and landed at The Marina for lunch.  Can't think of a better place to be on a day like that.

More pictures of our leaf peeping adventure on 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.