Vermont Woods Studios Handmade Furniture

made to order

Made to Order Furniture: How Long Does It Take?

August 19th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh

Made to Order Furniture | Lead Time | Handmade in Vermont

This Modern American Buffet-Sideboard which doubles as a TV console or media center is typical of our made to order furniture.  It’s handmade in Vermont of solid wood and guaranteed to last a lifetime.  Would you be willing to wait 5-18 weeks to have this piece made for you and delivered to your home?

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?


Customizing Hardwood Furniture

September 7th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh


A customer purchased this Copeland Horizon bed over the weekend, but when he gets it, the bed will look very different. That's because he customized the finish and changed it from the dark chocolate stain shown to a natural maple color which is very light (see below).

Have you been looking everywhere for the perfect hardwood furniture to fit precisely into your dining rom or bedroom space?  If you're still coming up short, maybe think about customizing!


We had a customer purchase this Copeland Horizon bed over the weekend, but when he gets it, the bed is going to look very different than it does here.  That's because he customized the finish and changed it from the dark chocolate stain shown to a natural maple color which is very light. 


I love working with customers who have the vision (and courage!) to imagine how customized furniture will look in their homes.  Maybe he'll send us a photo once it's installed in his bedroom so I can share it with you.  I hope so.





The Horizon bed above is made of solid maple hardwood and can be customized in 8 of these finish colors: natural maple (no stain) or white maple, cocoa maple, dark chocolate
maple, dark honey maple, chestnut maple, black maple or slate maple.


At Vermont Woods Studios we customize furniture routinely.  Customization can be as straight-forward as changing the stain or substituting different drawer pulls.  Or it can be substantial for instance modifying  dimensions, leg style, configuration of drawers-doors, adding inlays and more.

We've tried to build our fine furniture website so you can use pull-down menus to see possibilities and prices for popular customizations. 

What many people don't realize is that customizations are often free!  Or in this case, it was two hundred dollars less to customize the bed in natural maple, as opposed to having the dark stain.

So if you're still searching for that custom dining set or bedroom set for your home, check out our furniture at Vermont Woods Studios and give us a call to see how easy it can be customized to meet your needs.



Good Things Take Time

January 16th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh

Custom-furniture-processIn the world of Vermont's Made to Order Furniture there are many advantages:  your furniture is handcrafted especially for you, you can customize it to fit exactly into your space, you can feel good about the fact that your furniture is made from trees that are harvested sustainably with respect for the forest environment… and so on.  But there is one downside to having furniture built just for you:  it takes time.

Depending on who is making your furniture (we work with a dozen or so independent furniture makers), and what they've already got in their cue, it can take anywhere from 2-16+ weeks from the day you place your order to the day it is complete.  Typically the crafting time is about 6-8 weeks, but specialty items or furniture that's being made by our most popular craftsmen can take longer. 

Vermont-fine-furnitureThen after the furniture is built, it takes another 1-5 weeks to ship it, depending on where the customer lives.  Fine furniture cannot be FedEx'd (unless maybe it's an end table or something that's been designed for quick-ship).

So Rebecca uses a series of emails and phone calls to keep clients in the loop during the crafting and shipping process. She and a customer were talking aout it in terms of old Vermont sayings yesterday– like "slower than molasses running uphill in January" and "It takes less time to do something right than to explain why it was done wrong".

In this world of instant gratification, where most furniture buyers walk into Bob's Discount Furniture, Ikea or Ashley Furniture and walk out an hour later with something that's substandard and unsustainably produced overseas by huge multi-national conglomerates, we find ourselves immensley grateful to our customers for their patience in waiting for the real thing.  When buying furniture that's built to last a lifetime, we hope you'll feel it's worth the wait.

ps– Vermonters have a bunch of other funny old sayings.  If you're interested, learn what "dryer than a popcorn fart", "flatlander" and "a chewing match" mean here at Virtual Vermont.


Custom Wood Furniture, Part 1

January 11th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh

Made-to-order-wood-furnitureWhat does "Custom Wood Furniture" mean to you?  In talking to our customers, I can say that it means many different things to different people.  At Vermont Woods Studios we have fine furniture that falls into varying degrees of what might be called "custom wood furniture", including:

  • Made To Order Wood Furniture– this is our most popular type of furniture and our most affordably priced.  Each piece is built here in Vermont especially for the customer however, it's not "custom furniture".  The designs are existing tried and true designs that are pictured on our website.  Some people will call "made to order" furniture "custom furniture" but as you read on, you'll see the difference.
  • Customized Wood Furniture is the next step toward "custom furniture".  Let's say you see a table on our website that you love but you need it a little longer or wider to fit in your space.  Or you like a buffet but you'd like us to install your own drawer pulls. Or you want to select a different wood species than what's offered.  Customized furniture takes existing designs and modifies them slightly.  Since our furniture is made to order, it is easily customized and small changes don't usually add much to the price.  Customized furniture is kind of a cool way to get unique furniture, tailored to your specific style and size at an affordable price.



Next Post:  True Custom Wood Furniture and Custom Artisan Wood Furniture


Custom Tables, Made to Order of Solid Wood

October 4th, 2010 by Peggy Farabaugh


Looking for a custom wooden table for your kitchen, dining room, hallway or living room?  Did you know you can have a table custom made to order at the same price you would pay for a similar table out of a big box store or warehouse?

One of the advantages of buying a custom table is that you can tailor the dimensions to fit precisely into the space you’ve allotted in your home.  Using the drop down menus on Vermont Woods Studios website, you can choose from nearly 80 different solid wood dining tables.  Each table can be ordered in about 25 different sizes or you can call and order a unique custom size.



You can also customize the shape of your table top (rectangular, oval, boat, octagon), the shape and height of the table legs, the type of wood used, the finish, the edge profile and more. Want a drawer in the table top?  How about a counter height table?  Because each of our tables is made to order, it’s easy and affordable to customize them.

Vermont furniture makers offer custom tables in many styles and sizes, including farm tables, dining room tables, sofa tables, coffee tables, end tables and ultra luxury artisan designed custom tables.  If you don’t see exactly what you want, give us a call.  We’ll work with you to build a custom table that fits your style and budget.