Natural Wood Furniture | American Made in Vermont
This Natural Wood Furniture set is part of our 100% American made Modern Shaker collection.  The wood is sustainably harvested in local and regional forests that are managed by professional foresters.  Furniture finishes are non toxic and eco friendly.

American Made Furniture vs Imports

While we’ve watched the price of most home decor items skyrocket over the last 30 years, have you noticed that the price of furniture has actually tumbled?  It’s true. For a couple centuries we Americans prided ourselves on making high quality, natural wood furniture that was coveted around the world.  North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Vermont and other New England states were leaders in the fine furniture industry.

But in the 1960’s  and 70’s many of America’s big furniture makers (like Ethan Allen, Broyhill, Thomasville and Lane) started to move their operations overseas and superior quality became a thing of the past (along with hundreds of thousands of American jobs).  Prices fell dramatically.  Instead of preserving our grandparents heirloom quality wooden furniture for our homes, we began buying cheap, trendy furniture imports and replacing them frequently as breakage occured.

Natural Furniture for the Healthy Home

Fast forward to 2013 when home owners are getting tired of cheap imported furniture that ends up on the curbside in 5 years.  And they’re worried about the health effects of toxic flame retardants and formaldehyde that come standard with imports. Especially in households with children, it is simply not worth the risk.

Families are coming back to American made natural wood furniture with non-toxic finishes.  Yes the furniture is more expensive up front, primarily because the American worker is paid a livable wage (as compared to wages that often amount to just a few dollars/day in Asia).  But the high quality and environmental integrity of American made furniture is winning customers over.  In fact, many brands  are offered with a lifetime guarantee, indicative of the superior value of American made furniture over time.

What kind of furniture is in your home?  Where was it made?  Is it time to rediscover the real thing?  Learn more about American made, natural wood furniture on the sustainability section of our website.

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.

Hardwood Furniture:  Real Solid Cherry, Walnut, Maple, Oak Wood

Which Type of Hardwood Furniture Is Best For Your Bedroom, Dining Room or Home Office?

If you’re looking for hardwood furniture, there’s a good chance you’re narrowing your wood choices down to the most popular and plentiful species grown here in America such as cherry, maple, oak and walnut.  These prized hardwoods are grown sustainably here in the USA with Vermont and New England being a favorite source for many woods.

We like these species because they are well suited to fine furniture making by virtue of their color, strength, hardness, grain patterns and workability.  They are also readily obtainable in our local and regional area, making them a sustainable choice.  Often our furniture makers will offer two-tone combinations of these hardwoods creating a custom, artisan look and feel to your furniture.

The photo above shows Copeland Furniture’s SoHo Bedroom Set in solid maple and walnut hardwoods.  This striking two-tone wood combination has become a best seller in our metropolitan markets, particularly Manhattan, Los Angeles and San Francisco.  Homeowners appreciate the modern, contemporary sensibilities of the SoHo solid hardwood design as well as the fine detail and craftsmanship that goes into every custom, made to order piece.

SoHo furniture is also offered in a two-tone walnut and cherry design.  Which of these hardwood combinations would look best for your bedroom furniture?

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.

By Loryn Dion

Here at Vermont Woods Studios, a big part of our mission is to support and give back to our local and global community, specifically to those that are helping to better our world through forest conservation. While many companies and organizations promote a similar cause in their missions, VWS staff members like to do more than just write out a check or sit in the office talking about our plans but not physically putting them into action.

Thursday, the folks at the Bonnyvale Environmental Educational Center (BEEC) welcomed Peggy and me to their beautiful sanctuary, a vacation away from the hustle and bustle of the average work day. BEEC is a member-based, nonprofit organization founded with the mission to develop a more ecologically informed citizenry through education and action in order to enhance and sustain the vitality of southern Vermont’s bioregion. BEEC’s land and facilities include 100 acres of mature forests, open pasture lands, hiking trails, sweeping hilltop views, and a classroom and office, all situated in a beautiful rural setting less than 10 minutes from downtown Brattleboro.

BEEC also coordinates and leads important community-based environmental research and conservation programs, including watershed stewardship, reptile and amphibian conservation initiatives, and biodiversity planning and protection.

Loryn and Vermont Hill Tops

Check out those hill tops!

We traveled to BEEC for a meeting with Patti Smith and Belle Coles, two staff members of BEEC, to brainstorm some ideas for a partnership between our organizations. BEEC has some fantastic programs that they organize throughout the year and they are always looking for volunteers and sponsors. Vermont Woods Studios is hoping to help them out with one or more of these projects in the not-so-distant future.

Although Peggy and I were there on “business,” we were able to go on a nice hike to see the amazing views of the Vermont landscape and meet a lazy little possum named “Samuel Gompers.” Samuel and his siblings were rescued when they were just babies after they lost their parents. Samuel is very happy at his home with BEEC staff and enjoys eating blueberries and Japanese Beetles! I’d say this was a very successful business meeting!

If you’re interested in helping out too, the next big event that BEEC is holding their annual Hike-A-Thon. Last year, they raised over $1400 through the fundraiser. To learn more about BEEC’s projects, check out the event calendar on their Web site.

 

 

And to learn more about our participation in a future BEEC project, keep following our blog or follow us on Facebook!

Possum

Mr. Samuel Gompers

 

Loryn Dion is a Marketing Assistant at Vermont Woods Studios, an online furniture gallery which showcases Vermont’s finest wood furniture. Follow our blog to learn about Vermont fine furniture, Vermont happenings, our mission, and our team.

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.

Lyndon-furniture-vt-usaYesterday I wrote about Vermont's Lyndon Furniture, one of America's most admired green furniture companies– and one that has remained in America throughout the offshoring exodus of the last 40 years.

Lyndon's owner and founder, Dave Allard is shown here in Vermont's Green Mountain Forest with some of his hardwood creations.

We interviewed Dave yesterday to learn more about why Lyndon Furniture is considered one of America's greenest furniture companies and here's the second half of Dave's response:

Sustainably Harvested Hardwoods – Lyndon furniture is made with choice hardwoods such as natural Cherry, Maple, Oak, or Walnut which are harvested through sustainable forestry practices. The predominant method is Single Tree Selection where trained foresters select individual trees for harvesting. The cut logs are then removed with the least disruption to the surrounding environment. This method creates openings in the forest canopy allowing more precipitation, sunlight, and nutrients to reach the forest floor ensuring the health of other trees. Responsible forest management takes into consideration long term timber production, while addressing water quality, wildlife habitat, biodiversity, forest aesthetics and recreational opportunities. The same can’t always be said for Asian or Rainforest woods where responsible forest management practices often take a back seat to maximizing profits.

Green Furniture Finishes – Lyndon's furniture finishes and stains are all made in Vermont. Vermont has some of the strictest environmental laws in the country which coincide with our views and respect of nature. Consequently our finishes have far lower VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) and HAPs (Hazardous Air Pollutants) than current American industry standards, and far exceed the standards of imported products.

Sustainable Manufacturing – Lyndon Furniture has an extensive recycling program. We recycle paper, cardboard, metal and wood waste. Most materials (with the exception of the wood waste) are picked up by our local recycling center for proper material reintegration. Wood scrap is utilized as a biomass heating source (which has allowed Lyndon to drastically reduce oil usage) while sawdust is used by local farms for animal bedding. We have also made significant investments in energy efficiency to reduce our costs, and more importantly our carbon footprint. 

At a time when it seems every furniture company is "going green" it's nice to know that Lyndon Furniture and their fellow Vermont furniture makers actually have a history of using green practices from the start.

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.


Lyndon-furniture-vt-green-eco

Lyndon Furniture's green practices start with using sustainably harvested North American lumber sourced locally and regionally.

Vermont's Lyndon Furniture is one of America's most admired eco-friendly furniture companies.  We've been partnering with Lyndon for many years and often customers ask "just what is it that makes Lyndon Furniture so green?"

 

 

We put the question to our friend Dave Allard, Lyndon's owner and founder and below are a few of his comments.  We'll follow up with more tomorrow.

 

Use of Local Woods – At Lyndon Furniture "green" practices start with our Purchasing Policy.  We purchase wood through responsible local partners, thus minimizing transport distances and helping our regional economy. This policy greatly reduces fuel usage and carbon emissions.

Sustainably Harvested Woods – The hardwoods we utilize at Lyndon are grown and harvested within a 500 mile radius of our shop. Some are even harvested less than two miles away, from my own property. This is unlike furniture imported from China or other places where the lumber might be sourced from thousands of miles away in Africa or South America, thus consuming great amounts of energy in transit before timber is even received for furniture production.

 Green Technology – At Lyndon Furniture we utilize advanced technology and responsible manufacturing to maximize yield and reduce the amount of wood waste, making certain that all wood processing by-products are put to some use. For example, our sawdust is used by local farmers for animal bedding.

Pretty cool, right?  In Vermont nothing goes to waste.  It's part of our Yankee culture of ingenuity, innovation and oh yeah…thrift.  In Vermont "green furniture" is not a new promotional slogan.  Furniture making has always been this way up here and I'd guess it always will be.  Vermonters just aren't very responsive to passing trends.  It's more about quality, integrity and sustainability in VT.

We'll post a few other green characteristics of Lyndon's eco friendly furniture tomorrow.

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.