August 19th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
How long would you be willing to wait to have solid wood, made to order furniture created just for you? Four weeks? Eight weeks? Three months? Four months?
Lead time is something we struggle with in the world of Vermont’s handmade furniture. It used to be the typical lead time for a piece like the Modern American Buffet-Sideboard (shown above) was 5-8 weeks. But, alas with the Internet– Vermont made furniture has been re-discovered! It’s popularity is growing and rightly so– it’s beautiful, affordable, American made and sustainable.
The downside of this popularity rebirth, however is that customers sometimes have to wait longer to receive their custom made treasures. They ask us: WHY DOES IT TAKE SO LONG?
Well I guess it all goes back to the laws of supply and demand. A growing awareness of Vermont made to order furniture is keeping our independent woodworkers busy around the clock. Many of them are growing their businesses in response to demand but it’s going to take a little time. As they say… quality can’t be rushed.
In response to our steady growth, we recently allied with a furniture maker from across the river in New Hampshire, to design a couple new lines of furniture for us. Quite a shocking move for a company that’s all about Vermont made furniture, but fortunately, the skills and aesthetics of local woodworkers doesn’t stop at the Connecticut River. More on that move next week.
For now, I just want to assure you that we are doing our very best to keep lead times to a minimum. Neville has placed a “Lead Time” tab on every product page to let you know the current estimated ETA for that piece, including shipping and delivery (the average lead time is about 9 weeks but, depending on the piece and the craftsman it could be anywhere between 5 and 18 weeks).
Although, occasionally a craftsman will get sick or a delivery truck will be detained by weather, we do our very best to ensure deliveries are made within those time frames. If you have questions about an existing order, or are thinking of placing a new order– give our crackerjack sales and customer service staff (Liz, Sean, Michelle and Loryn) a call to discuss further specifics. And let us know on Facebook: how much time would you consider “reasonable” to wait for your made to order furniture?
February 8th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
When Ken, Kendall, Riley and I started Vermont Woods Studios 7 years ago we had just a vague notion of what this company could be. First and foremost we wanted a green company with a mission of forest conservation. That grew out of the boys’ attachment to Vermont’s natural world, especially it’s wildlife. And my interest in saving the rainforest.
I figured since Ken already had a full time job and the boys were in school, it would take 100% of my time for at least the first 5 years (optimistic and naive, it turns out) to get a new business off the ground. So if I was to have any time with Ken and the boys, it would pretty much have to be within the context of the business. The new company would have to be engaging for all of us.
One of our first ideas was to build and sell wooden bird houses. That satisfied Ken’s woodworking interests and the boys connection to the outdoors. But as we brainstormed lots of different ideas and got more involved with the Vermont woodworking community the concept of partnering with local craftspeople and marketing their Vermont made furniture online evolved.
Well, 7 years later, thanks to the help of Douglas Fletcher (Sales and Customer Service Manager), Dennis Shanoff (Marketing Manager) and the rest of our creative and hard-working staff, Vermont made furniture is now in all 50 states. We’ve come a long way. And we’ve got a long way to go.
Many thanks to all our craftspeople, customers, readers, vendors and cheer leaders. We are grateful for your support.