Steve Holman's Sideboard at "Source" expo | Vermont Custom Furniture
Steve Holman’s Curvy Drawer Sideboard is featured at Source, an exhibition of exquisite and creative Vermont custom furniture and craftspeople with a focus on the source of all elements that collaborate to make the final piece.  Source is now playing at the Helen Day Art Center in Stowe, Vermont.

Vermont Custom Furniture Showcased in Stowe

Vermont custom furniture takes center stage this month at the Helen Day Art Center in Stowe.   Members of the Guild of Vermont Furniture Makers are showcasing examples of their work, which (in my humble opinion) is among the finest custom furniture you’ll find anywhere.

The Stowe expo, Source  focuses on the origin of all elements that collaborate to make the final exquisite and creative piece. “The exhibit maps the source of materials, the relationships between forester, mill and craftsperson, as well as the path that the artists took (who influenced them, and where they learned their craft) to become furniture makers”.

Many of our favorite Vermont custom furniture makers are represented in Stowe, including: George Ainley, Erin Hanley, James Becker, Steve Holman, Hugo Belton, David Hurwitz, Richard Bissell, Bill Laberge, Dave Boynton, Mario Messina, Tim Clark, Dan Morsheim, Doug Clarner, Pete Novick, Johns Congdon, Walt Stanley and Bob Gasparetti.

Vermont Custom Furniture Show | Helen Day Center | Stowe
From left:  David Hurwitz’s free-form, wavy chest of drawers, Dave Boynton’s custom acoustic cabinet and Mario Messina’s Trillium chair.  See them up close and personal at Vermont’s Custom Artisan Furniture Show at the Helen Day Center in Stowe.

Where Does Your Furniture Come From?

At Vermont Woods Studios our focus has always been on “where does your furniture come from” particularly from an environmental perspective (where is the wood from and was it sustainably harvested).

What I love about this expo is that it takes a broader look into the origin of these works of art, focusing on the artists, their inspirations and the chain of partners involved in getting their wood from the forest to their studios.

If you’re heading up to Stowe to ski and you love woodworking, be sure to make time to stop at the Helen Day Center for a relaxing and inspiring visit.  Hours are Wednesday – Sunday 12pm-5pm and by appointment.  Admission is by donation.  It’s well worth the trip!

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.

 

Vt-organic-furniture

Speaking of organic, did you know that Vermont is also famous for it's organic furniture?  Last count there were some 2000 small wood furniture makers scattered across Vermont.  Although the styles and methods of craftsmanship are quite varied, these furniture makers have in common a deep respect for the forest where their wood furniture originates.

 

I haven't been able to find a definition for organic furniture yet but I do think Vermont would logically be the place to start.  Vermont woodworkers have a long history of sustainable woodworking, sourcing their wood from our local forests abundant in native hardwoods like maple, oak, ash, cherry and birch.  And we avoid the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides in Vermont's sustainable forests, relying instead on Mother Nature to regenerate after careful selective harvesting.

When it comes to applying a finish to Vermont's furniture, you'll be hard-pressed to find harsh chemicals with high levels of VOCs or formaldehyde.  Instead furniture makers use natural linseed oil finishes, clear non-toxic lacquers and even a natural coating made from whey (a recycled byproduct of our dairy industry).

Yesterday I wrote about organic food in terms of where it comes from and how it's grown.  The organic food movement has been around for over a century but has picked up more steam in the last 20 years as people become more aware of where their food comes from.  I think the next step for the organic movement is into the world of organic furniture.  And Vermont will lead the way.

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.

 

Vt-furniture-world

The shaded countries are those that have visited our website over the last 80 days. Only 7 countries have not.

 

The other day, Dennis mentioned that our Vermont Sustainable Furniture website has been visited by people in almost ever country in the world. How cool is that?  I couldn't resist having a look at our analytics program to see which countries have yet to discover Vermont's Fine Furniture. 

So… of the planet's 196 countries, it appears there are 7 that we've yet to reach: Turkmenistan, Gabon, Central African Republic, Chad, South Sudan, Mauritiana, Papua New Guinea.

I'm not sure what to do with this information but it was fun to see how far the Internet has spread the word about a tiny group of fine furniture makers nestled in the foothills of Vermont's Green Mountain Forest. 

 

 

American-dining-furniture-VT

Fine, handmade wood furniture from Vermont, USA

If you're reading this from abroad and wondering how to bring Vermont made, fine wood furniture to your country, contact us.  Exporting our eco-friendly furniture is part of our 10 year plan.  We're open to new ideas from established interior design, fine furniture and home decor professionals around the world.

 

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.

Bob-Gasperetti The Vermont Crafts Council 19th Annual Open Studio Weekend is only a week away on May 28th & 29th 2011.

If you've never been, I can promise that touring around to Vermont's artisan studios will be a unique and fun way to spend a weekend.

In addition to Vermont's amazing furniture makers, you'll be able to visit glass blowers, jewelers, printmakers, potters, furniture makers, weavers, ironworkers, painters, sculptors, quilt makers and wood carvers.  

 

I posted Bob Gasperetti's picture here because Bob is on of the best of the best Vermont Furniture Makers and he has the coolest studio.  It looks like a quintessential Vermont barn and is set in the heart of the Green Mountains in Mt Tabor, VT just off Route 7, a bit north of Manchester Center.  On the first floor of Bob's place he has a treasure trove of beautiful wooden planks, burls and slabs– from all types of different tree species that he's been collecting over the years.  Pick the ones you like and head upstairs.

Bob's workshop is on the second floor, where he'll show you all the hand tools and machinery he uses to work his magic.  Fascinating!  Then up on the third floor is his showroom which houses his latest handcrafted furniture creations… perhaps:

  • a Shaker style four poster bed and matching dressers, mirrors and chests
  • a Vermont style, solid cherry dining table, chairs, buffet and hutch
  • a home office set up with an executive desk, file credenza and bookcases

The craftsmanship you'll see in Bob's studio is like nothing you've ever seen before (unless you're already familiar with the tradition of Vermont furniture making, of course).  Check out the precision of his dovetail joints and run your hand back and forth over his smooth finishes.  You might have a hard time leaving empty handed… but the good thing is that he always has a great selection of pieces on sale and available to take home during Open Studio Weekend.  Or you can work with Bob on a unique custom piece made especially for you.

Reaching for your calendar and map?  The Council publishes a free tour guide featuring a map of all the participating studios, including Bob's.  You can pick it up at any Vermont Welcome Center or print one online.   Vermont is actually bigger than you think and there are so many artisans now that maps are available for each county.  Enjoy the weekend and let's hope the sun participates too!

Vermont Woods Studios

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.

Walnut-buffet
Everyone wants to have handcrafted, American made wood furniture in their home.  Why not?  It's beautiful, lasts for generations and adds warmth and richness to your space.  But at Vermont Woods Studios we do understand that not everyone is able to wait 8-10 weeks to have their furniture custom crafted.  Often customers come to us as they are preparing for guests for Thanksgiving dinner, Christmas, a birthday celebration or other holiday and they need their furniture fast.

Well lucky for us, Vermont furniture makers are working hard to meet those needs. We are currently able to offer many dining tables and dining chairs with a lead time of just 2-3 weeks.  Give us a call or email us regarding lead times for the furniture pieces you're interested in.  Believe it or not, it's still possible to have a dining room furniture set crafted just for you with delivery in time for Thanksgiving dinner!

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.