From the very beginning, it was the story behind Vermont Woods Studios that drew me to working here. I had recently graduated from Green Mountain College, a small environmental liberal arts school, and I was looking for a job that reflected the ideals and values I’d acquired there. The tight knit community, caring leadership, and environmental mission that Green Mountain is known for were things I wasn’t sure I’d ever find in my professional life– but I found them here at Vermont Woods Studios.

When I first started working here I scoured the Vermont Woods Studios website and blog, and found bits and pieces of a story just dying to be told…Peggy’s story! Her childhood as an animal lover, experience as an environmental advocate, and the serendipitous discovery of Stonehurst were all small parts of the Vermont Woods Studios story that weren’t getting the attention they deserved. So after months of research, planning, and pulling together the parts of Vermont Woods Studios that make it so special, we’ve put together a series of new pages that will hopefully give our fans and friends some deeper insight into who we are and our reason for being.

Read Our Story…

vermont-woods-studios-story


 

 

Meet the Green Team…

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Learn about our Mission and Impact…

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Learn What Makes Vermont Furniture So Special…

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Learn about our Talented Craftspeople…

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So, we’ve pieced it all together and all you have to do is explore! Let us know what you think of our new pages and our story in the comments section! We’d love to hear your feedback.

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.

My Boss is a Cat
She’s fat, bossy and demanding but when it comes to tough decisions –nobody puts Pepper in a corner.   Article originally posted on medium.com

Editors note: OK, this is really me (Peggy) but I found this old photo of our Marketing Manager Dennis Shanoff and it got me wondering how we ever survived the early days of start-up.

Eight years ago I started this online furniture store. I had no experience with ecommerce— or any sort of business for that matter. I am a chemist by education and a teacher by trade. I had recently lost my job, I was approaching my 50th birthday and I decided my next career was going to be my last. Thirty years after graduating from high school I would finally take the advice my guidance counselor offered: “follow your passion”.

Fast forward a few years after (a slow) start-up. I’ve just hired a “Marketing Manager”, Dennis Shanoff. It’s his first day on the job. I’m imagining this conversation he’s texting to his wife:

Dennis Shanoff: My boss is a cat

Susan: huh?

Dennis: sends selfie (above)

Susan: lol

Dennis: I’m sitting at a desk in this lady’s spare bedroom trying to figure out how I’m going to build a furniture brand around her passion

Susan: which is?

Dennis: saving the rainforest

Susan: from Vermont?

Dennis: most furniture is made from rainforest woods. Peggy’s trying to raise awareness about that and promote sustainable Vermont made furniture instead

Susan: OK so it’s a stretch. Don’t panic

Susan: Yet

Luckily Dennis didn’t panic. Four years after what must have been an unnerving first day at work, Dennis Shanoff has helped transform a fledgling start-up that no one believed would ever get off the ground, into a small business with a reasonable chance of long-term survival.

I don’t think our story is that atypical for small businesses in Vermont or throughout America for that matter. It’s full of hopes and dreams and absurdity. Luck, misfortune and determination. But more than anything it’s a story of how a small group of disparate entrepreneurs managed to leverage their differences in an effort to change the world.

My friend Annette thinks I should start reflecting on this unorthodox journey with Vermont Woods Studios and share my memories here and on Medium.com. Maybe others with a passion to make the world a better place will find or offer encouragement. Think?  Let me know (on Facebook or in the comments section below) if you’d be interested to read more start-up stories about Dennis, Douglas, Ken and the gang.

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.