October 16th, 2012 by Loryn Dion
This week in our green interior design column, we’re talking about nesting tables. Earlier this year, House and Home magazine listed nesting tables and other small accent tables as a “must-have” in their 2012 Decorating Trends issue. Not only are nesting tables trendy and unique, but they’re also great for homes with limited space. Nesting tables allow you the versatility of having three separate tables while only taking up the space of one. These tables would be great to bring out during parties as floating tables for drinks or even as a tray for food. The possibilities are endless with these magic tables.
Here at Vermont Woods Studios, you can find nesting tables that do their job as convenient space-savers and, as an added bonus, they are environmentally friendly and made right here in Vermont.
Our New England Shaker Nesting Tables are traditional and simple, designed to match any home decor. With clean lines and dovetail joinery, these tables are meant to be displayed. With your purchase, you’ll receive 3 nesting tables in your choice of cherry. maple, oak or walnut woods. I’ll also point out that with our current sale (ending today!), you’ll be able to save up to 20%*.
If you’re looking for more of a modern twist on nesting tables, check out our Copeland Coonley Nesting End Tables. With two sleek nesting tables crafted in natural cherry wood, you’ll add twice the luxury and class to any room. Part of Copelands Frank Lloyd Wright Collection, these tables embody the styling of the modern architect.
October 8th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh
Columbus Day is a favorite time to shop for home decor as everyone’s beginning to realize that the holidays are right around the corner. If you’ll be entertaining family and friends for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza or another holiday you may be shopping for furniture today. No doubt, like Columbus, you’re looking for America’s best. So set your sails for Vermont.
In the Green Mountain State you’ll find the best real wood furniture anywhere in the USA. Vermont is home to some 2000 small custom furniture makers located throughout our state as well as several mid-size, high end furniture manufacturers like Copeland Furniture and Lyndon Furniture.
Vermont style furniture is known for organic solid wood, clear natural finishes and fine craftsmanship. The favorite hardwood among craftspeople and customers alike seems to be American Black Cherry as shown in the handmade Shaker dining table above, although you’ll also find a variety of other North American woods including walnut, oak and maple.
With so many American furniture brands now making their furniture overseas, Vermont has quietly become the Real Wood Furniture Capital of the USA. I know of only one Vermont furniture company that moved its operations overseas back when the Asian exodus was taking place and that was Ethan Allen. The other Vermont furniture businesses have continued to operate successfully in the USA, remaining true to their communities, their employees and their quality.
You can arrange a tour to visit the best of our Vermont furniture makers and see the difference that real wood and authentic American craftsmanship make. Columbus Day is a great time to make the trip! Start here with this Map of Vermont Master Furniture Makers and maybe swing by our Vermont Woods Studios Furniture Showroom in Vernon VT on your route. Then let us know if you too, see Vermont as America’s best place to shop for the real thing in USA made furniture.
September 22nd, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh
Handmade, real solid wood bedroom sets are a significant investment so if you’re shopping for one, you’re no doubt looking for the best overall value in terms of quality and price. Comparison shopping is hard work. It takes days, weeks and even (for many of our customers) months to research all the design and style choices for fine hardwood bedroom furniture sets.
And the price comparisons can really get tricky. Pricing can initially look like it’s all over the place but once you start to narrow down the level of quality you want you begin to see that, with high end, American made furniture, the pricing falls into a very narrow range. That’s because there’s just not a lot of room for mark-up. Handcrafting fine wood furniture takes extraordinary amounts of time to create and when that work is done here in America (which is probably important to if you made it to our blog) it needs to be compensated with a livable wage.
So when it comes to offering the best value for American made fine furniture, retailers like us (Vermont Woods Studios) have the greatest opportunity to save you money by being smart about the way we ship furniture (it turns out that shipping 3 or more pieces of furniture isn’t much more expensive than shipping one) and do our administrative work. With our solid wood bedroom furniture sets we’ve focused on both and are able to discount these sets a full 20%.
Just so you know, this is the best price and lowest discount we’re able to offer at anytime, all year long. While others might mark up to mark down by 70% or so routinely, we do not. Our prices accurately reflect the cost of creating your furniture and getting it to you safely via the best fine furniture shipping specialist in the country. So check out our solid wood bedroom sets today and let us know what you think on Facebook. To find out what others are saying, check out our testimonials page and the Customer Review section of our blog.
August 17th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh
At Vermont Woods Studios, solid cherry furniture has always been our specialty. Although most of our craftspeople routinely work in walnut, maple and oak too, cherry continues to be the favorite wood amongst our customers. And many are specifically looking for all solid cherry wood, rather than cherry with veneers.
For those customers I thought it might be helpful to compile a current list of all the furniture collections we offer in solid cherry wood. Here you go– all 18 of them:
Each of these collections is handmade here in VT with solid wood throughout (except the backs of some case goods*). Sometimes our photos show the furniture in walnut or maple, but you can use the drop down menus to select cherry wood. Details regarding how these furniture sets are built can be found on our Construction Details pages where you'll find specifics on joinery, drawer slides, hardware options, premium wood selection, finishing methods, etc.
* The backs of case goods in some of these collections are made of furniture grade plywood. This choice is based on the stability of plywood, versus solid woods which expand and contract with varying humidity levels. There are many structural and design details involved in a craftsman's decision to use solid wood versus plywood. Please check our Construction Details pages for specifics.
August 7th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh
Typically Vermont furniture can be distinguished from other American made furniture or imported furniture by the extensive use of real, solid wood. American Black Cherry is the wood most often used in Vermont furniture although sugar maple, black walnut, oak and other local species are also popular.
At Vermont Woods Studios we represent woodworkers and fine furniture makers from all across the Green Mountain State so our furniture reflects a wide variety of styles, designs and crafting techniques. Some of our furniture makers work exclusively with all solid wood construction and others employ the use of veneers. So customers often ask us about the difference between the two techniques.
Honestly, with all of our handmade furniture, heirloom quality is the bottom line and that can be achieved using all solid wood construction or with the incorporation of premium quality, high end veneers.
Although Vermont is best known for our all solid wood construction, we have several craftsmen who prefer to incorporate high quality veneers into their designs. This is done when veneers are the best choice for a particular design, rather than simply the most economical choice. For instance, the curved back panel of the Copeland Catalina Bed must be a veneer because it would be structurally impossible to build it out of solids. Copeland's framed panels, that is panels surrounded on all four sides, are often made of high grade, veneered plywood because in these instances, a solid panel would have the potential to expand and break the frame apart during periods of high humidity.
Plywood is considerably stronger than solids of equal dimension and some furniture makers choose them for Case Backs and Drawer Bottoms for that reason. On each of our furniture product pages you will find a link to the construction details for that product. We urge you to read through the information presented and give us a call with your questions. For the furniture on our website, you will find that when veneers are used, they are the the best choice for the design.
After all this discussion about veneers however, I can say that most of our furniture is still designed and constructed with all real solid wood, sustainably harvested in Vermont or neighboring states. If this is an important feature for you, give us a all and let us know. We'll help you find the right handmade solid wood furniture for your home.
April 12th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh
Maybe everyone is wishing they were more organized as they're struggling to finish up their taxes this week. I don't know, but we've had a lot of calls from customers wanting to buy bookcases. Specifically, real solid wood bookcases with glass doors.
This one is our Cherry Moon bookcase which can be customized online. It's available with glass doors, wooden doors or no doors. There are 5 heights you can order online with our standard width of 39"W and depth of 15"D. Further customization can be done by phone or in the showroom.
I'd guess we probably have about the most customizable selection of real wood bookcases anywhere online. Check out these links if you're looking to be more organized at tax time next year:
* Bookcases with no doors at all.
All bookcases can be customized online, in the showroom or by phone to best fit your space. Give Shannon a call and she'll show you how.
April 4th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh
This week's Best Seller was our high end, Modern Shaker Furniture Collection. Like all of our wooden furniture, this collection is handmade in Vermont of natural solid hardwoods.
One of the nice features of Modern Shaker Furniture is that each piece can be customized online with your choice of either soft, rounded corners and edges or straight streamlined edges and eased corners.
Whenever we're working with parents of small children, we always mention this collection as it's a kid-friendly choice with the rounded design and absence of sharp edges. It's also just a classic Shaker design that's earned a great reputation over the years. The Modern Shaker Furniture Collection is an eco-friendly, healthy choice for families too, with natural wood (real solid cherry, maple or walnut) and a hand-rubbed linseed oil finish that has no formaldehyde, VOCs or toxic off-gases… everything you need to get a good night's rest!
March 11th, 2012 by Peggy Farabaugh
Cherry, cherry cherry. Over half the furniture we sell at Vermont Woods Studios is made of beautiful, lustrous cherry wood from the American black cherry fruit tree. Often customers come to us a little bit suspicious about whether our handmade furniture is made of real solid cherry wood.
Well, it's no wonder! Most furniture that's sold as cherry isn't cherry at all. Hard to believe isn't it? So I thought we would publish a few tips for determining if the cherry furniture you're looking at is actually made of real cherry.
Here are 3 things to look for:
What color is the wood? OK, this is a trick question. Freshly harvested cherry wood is a light pinkesh color but as cherry ages or ripens in the presence of light, it gets darker and eventually reaches a rich reddish brown. So when you're shopping be sure to ask if the furniture is brand new or if it's been in the showroom for a number of months.
The Cherry Moon bed above is about a month old so it has ripened some but in another few months (depending on the amount of ambient light) it will be as dark as the bed at left. Eventually all natural cherry furniture will end up about this same color. Often customers will request a dark stain on cherry to "hurry-up" the process. If you just can't wait we can usually convince our furniture makers to stain cherry but most of them would rather plead with customers to be patient and wait for the real thing.
What does the grain look like? Cherry has a simple, fine, closed grain, much like that of maple. You can see the grain pattern pretty well in the Cherry Moon bed above. Fake "cherry" wood often has little or no grain pattern. It's made by taking a cheaper wood, bleaching it, texturizing it with chemicals, then staining it with a "cherry" stain.
Are there occasional black flecks and black streaks in the wood? Real cherry has beautiful markings (from gum streaking, mineral deposits and pin knots). Fake cherry looks entirely uniform in grain due to the chemical processing mentioned above. It's unlikely you'll ever find black flecks or streaks in faux cherry woods.
April 4th, 2009 by Peggy Farabaugh
Of course, your height is just one of many reasons to choose customized furniture. Maybe you have a narrow space between two windows, and you can't find the right size chest of drawers to fit. Or perhaps your kitchen is long and narrow and you need a table that's 7 feet long and only 2 feet wide.
Whatever the reason, you can have your furniture customized to your exact specifications, so it fits perfectly into your home and your family's lifestyle. And why not?
At Vermont Woods Studios, we build each piece of our fine, handcrafted furniture to order, especially for you. So it's easy for us to shorten the height of your dresser, or widen the width of your table or make any number of other customizations you might need. Often alterations can be made for little or no charge. Give us a call (888-390-5571) and let's get started now!