For all you Pine Top alumni out there, here is a fun email I received from Sally Byrnes Magin who shares her memories of skiing here in the 1950s:

Pine Top Ski Area | Memories from Sally
Memories of Pine Top from Sally Byrnes Magin:  I love the pictures of the ladies sitting on the front porch and the one of Laddie, Elsie and Romey’s dog.

Dear Peggy,

By chance, when googling “Pine Top” for sentimental reasons, I came across the Vermont Woods Studios and Stonehurst website.  After spending many winter vacations as a child at Pine Top, I was so excited to see that you are keeping the memories alive!  My family and our friends, from northern NJ, spent almost every President’s Week in February (from about 1950 until 1958) at Pine Top, learning to ski and having a wonderful time together. In fact, one of the trails that led from the top of the “Tobey” rope tow was named “Stoddard Run” after our friends the Stoddard family.

Eventually, as our skiing skills improved, we branched out to other Vermont ski areas. It was a magical time spent with Elsie and Romey (Racine), Laddie their dog, the kitchen staff, and the local ski instructors at Pine Top.  Our group took over the entire house for a week, and expanded into the “new annex” when it was built.

Some memories that I have of Pine Top are: skiing down the Pelley and Tobey slopes, struggling with those rope tows, the Tiny Tot hill, eating “sugar on snow” in the old warming hut, being excited when the “new” warning hut was built, visiting the farm and cows up the road, the bell that signaled breakfast and dinner, playing board games in front of the fireplace at night, going into Brattleboro to see ski jumping competitions, and how cold the rooms upstairs were in the mornings before the heat came up through the grates. Also, walking back from the warming hut on a cold Vermont night with every star in the sky visible.

Memories of Pine Top | Now Stonehurst Fine Furniture Gallery
The kids always ate first, and I guess we were celebrating someone’s birthday at dinner.   I must have been sitting at the other end of the dining room table (so am not in the picture).

I hope to visit Stonehurst some time in the future and perhaps walk around the property to revisit old memories.             …..Sally Byrnes Magin Township of Washington, NJ

Sally Byrnes Magin | Memories of Skiing at Pine Top
Here’s a picture of me in early 1950’s ski gear, lace up boots, and cable bindings. Those were the days!  By the way, one of those ski instructor’s last name may have been “Herbert”…he taught us all how to ski, and I am still going strong at age 70! … Sally Byrnes Magin

Well, thank you so much Sally for generously sharing your wonderful memories of skiing at Pine Top.  We hope you’ll come up to visit us soon. I think you’ll enjoy the property and all the improvements we’ve made while transforming it into Stonehurst (a showcase for Vermont’s fine furniture and home decor).

Does anyone else out there have Pine Top memories to share?  Send them along!  We’ve got an online compilation of Pine Top stories and yours should be part of it.

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.

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.

Over the years, I’ve lived and worked in New Orleans a couple times.  So when Mardi Gras rolls around its always fun to celebrate and reminisce about the Big Easy.  This year is especially exciting because we have five original New Orleans jazz paintings featured in our gallery at Stonehurst.  They are the creations of Linda Eaton Marcille, an award winning artist from Westminster, Vermont whose work hangs in public and private collections, across the country and internationally.

Who is this female jazz singer performing with a quintet?  Ella?  Sarah?  Nina?
Ella Fitzgerald? Sarah Vaughan? Nina Simone? Who is this female jazz singer performing with a quintet?  Original silk jazz paintings by Linda Marcille, available at Stonehurst.

Linda’s jazz paintings are on silk, a medium that few artists will attempt.  If you’re a jazz lover or an art collector, stop by and see them at Stonehurst!  They are truly world class art.

About Silk Painting

Even at the hands of a master, silk paintings can take months to complete. The images are created with French steam set dyes that shimmer on this charmeuse silk.  The jewelry in each painting is created with a metallic resist called gutta that sparkles like real gold.

Jazz trumpeter:  Miles Davis?  Dizzie Gillespie?  Original silk painting by Linda Marcille.
Miles Davis? Dizzie Gillespie?  Come see who’s in these jazz paintings by Linda Marcille.

“Silk painting is an ancient Asian art form and it is very unique and mysterious. The silk itself is seemingly so fragile yet it is one of the strongest fibers in nature. There is also a serendipitous quality to painting on silk with dyes. The process never allows the artist to be fully in control or to know exactly the effect that will be created.  “Painting on silk is an incredibly time-consuming and unforgiving medium. Just one drop of misplaced dye, or a broken resist line, and days of painstaking work are ruined. As challenging as painting on silk is, however, it is also one of the most rewarding art forms because the dyes take on the silk’s iridescent sheen producing an awe-inspiring range of reflective color that no other medium is capable of creating,”     Linda Marcille

Original silk paintings of New Orleans jazz legends like Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday, Nina Simone.  Vermont artist, Linda Marcille.
Linda Eaton Marcille jazz paintings are available to view and buy at Stonehurst Gallery.
Who is this legendary jazz and blues guitarist?  BB King?  Buddy Guy?  Robert Johnson?
BB King? Buddy Guy? Robert Johnson?  Who is this legendary jazz and blues guitarist? Post your answer on Facebook. Paintings by Linda Eaton Marcille.

Jazz in Vermont

You might not think of Vermont as being synonymous with Jazz but we actually have quite a respectable jazz and blues community here. Burlington has hosted the Discover Jazz Fest annually for the last 30 years, proudly featuring such jazz legends as Sarah Vaughan, Lionel Hampton, Ella Fitzgerald, Count Basie, Dizzy Gillespie, Herbie Hancock, Dave Brubeck, Branford Marsalis, Diana Krall… I could go on but you can get the whole run down here on the Discover Jazz Fest website.

Just down the street, we have the Vermont Jazz Center at the Cotton Mill in Brattleboro, VT which is now in its 37th year. Founded by legendary guitarist Attila Zoller, the Center is now run by pianist, Eugene Uman and features a summer jazz workshop, monthly concert series, Wednesday night jam sessions, and frequent collaborations with area schools, jazz art organizations and businesses.

Who is this famous jazz singer?  Billie Holiday?  Sarah Vaughn?  Ella?
Who is this famous jazz singer? Billie Holiday? Sarah Vaughan? Ella Fitzgerald?  Douglas thinks they are the Obamas but what does he know? Original silk paintings by Linda Marcille.

How to Purchase Linda’s Paintings

Do you have the perfect spot in your home for this remarkable series of Jazz paintings on silk? We are proud to be able to offer them for purchase here at Stonehurst. These are the only jazz paintings Linda has done out of an extensive body of work over many years and she will not be creating more like them. They are an investment sure to increase in value.

The original paintings are priced at $800 each to the person or family who will cherish and care for them. We would prefer to sell them as a set or perhaps split them into two sets, if necessary. Dimensions are 29″W x 25″H, matted and framed (actual image approximately 20″W x 15″H). For additional information or to purchase please call Peggy, Liz or any of our sales team at Vermont Woods Studios. Looking to buy just one? We’ll talk.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Hubbardton Forge | Lighting Fixtures | Modern American Blacksmiths
I love this picture of George Chandler and Reed Hampton, the founders of Hubbardton Forge, Vermont’s 40 year old handcrafted lighting manufacturer.  The two men met serendipitously in Paul Aschenbach’s art class at the University of Vermont.  How funny that George’s last name means candle maker!

Next stop on my tour of Vermont’s luxury home decor providers is lighting manufacturer, Hubbardton Forge. If you’ve had to buy or install lighting fixtures over the last few decades you’re no doubt aware that most lighting is manufactured in Asia these days and the quality isn’t what it used to be.

Enter Hubbardton Forge of Castleton.  The company was established in 1974 by two guys in a barn who set out to revive the forgotten craft of hand-forging raw metal into contemporary designs. Today the business started by George Chandler and Reed Hampton is one of the largest contemporary commercial forges in America. Forty years of practicing time honored principles have built an international reputation for innovative designs, simplicity and integrity.

During my visit to the forge I met with Art Director, Wendy Fannin to show her what we’re doing at Stonehurst and discuss possible strategies to cross-promote our products.  Both companies share a passion for simple elegance, traditional craftsmanship and a commitment to environmental stewardship so it seems some synergy could be achieved.

At Vermont Woods Studios we’re looking forward to receiving our first order of Hubbardton forge chandeliers, floor lamps, sconces and table lamps very soon and I’m eager to see how they transform our space.  They’ll be accompanied by fine furniture from studios all around the state, glassware from Simon Pearce, ceramics from Laura Zindel and hopefully linens from Anichini and furniture/pottery from Shackleton-Thomas.

Keep posted on our latest inventory and/or plan a trip to see everything in person at Stonehurst!

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.

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.

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.