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Which dining chair is best for your space? This is usually one of the first questions a person asks when re-furnishing and redesigning their dining room. While there are literally hundreds of different chair styles to choose from, the Windsor Style Chair and Modern Shaker Style are some of our favorites. Both of them are simplistic and stylish in their own right, and they are both staples of American history!

Lets start with the history behind the classic Windsor Chair:

According to ‘Past and Present: Windsor Chair History’ by Design*Sponge, “In North America, the Windsor chair form was first used in Philadelphia where the chair became hugely popular around the time of the Revolution. The chairs were such an important part of the life in the new country that Thomas Jefferson was said to have written the Declaration of Independence in one of these chairs and Martha Washington had needlework cushions made for her bow-back Windsor chairs.”

Wow, who knew? Even better, here’s some historical photos of these classic American chairs:

 

windsorchair_englishgarden2
“Images above, from top: This ca. 1739 drawing by Jacques Rigaud shows a lord and lady being wheeled through the garden in Windsor chairs (from The Metropolitan Museum of Art). The presentation of the Declaration of Independence to the Continental Congress by Edward Savage (from the Library of Congress).” (Photos retrieved from Design*Sponge)

What about Shaker Chairs in history?

According to ArtComplex.org, “The common New England slat-back chair, fashioned by the hands of a Shaker woodworker, has become an icon of American furniture design. Shaker craftsman were familiar with that furniture form. It was found in almost every eighteenth and nineteenth century rural New england home. Converts brought these chairs with them as they joined shaker communities. Shaker craftsmen produced these chairs, refining that vernacular form and creating a distinctive , well-built chair that ultimately earned them considerable renown. Chairs were made in nearly every Shaker village for use within their shops and dwellings. Some chairs were sold to outsiders. Mount Lebanon, New York, the only community to mass produce chairs for sale, sold tens of thousands to individuals, families and businesses”

Traditionally, Shaker Chairs would be hung on the walls to maximize utility and save space.  Photo retrieved from: Blue Ribbons Design.
Traditionally, Shaker Chairs would be hung on the walls to maximize utility and save space. Photo retrieved from: Blue Ribbons Design.

While chair B isn’t a traditional slat back as mentioned and pictured, it still represents the simplicity of design and exquisite craftsmanship represented in Shaker style!

So, have you made up your mind yet? Both chairs have an impressive history and even more impressive design. If you don’t want to have to chose one or the other, why not both? Mix & Match for a look that is not only stylish, but has a great story.

Let us know which chair you love in the comments section of this blog, or send us a tweet!

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.

shaker style wood furniture

What most people love about Shaker style wood furniture is that it simply  feels like home. It’s comfortable, subtle, and nostalgic– bringing you back to a time when things were made slowly and with purpose. A time where furniture was always made with precision, care, and quality. It’s unassuming, and while it’s presence is always noticeable, it doesn’t demand the absolute attention of the room. For these reasons, Shaker Style wood furniture is the perfect furniture for the holiday season.

Shaker Furniture Encourages Buying with Purpose

If Black Friday Sales this year are any indication of the shifting in American values (Black Friday sales across the country plummeted while Small Business Saturday sales grew exponentially), than my belief is correct in that American people are growing tired of the craze surrounding low quality, mass produced items. They want simpler things like quality time with the family, a warm comfortable home, and beautifully crafted items to fill it.

Shaker furniture has a long, rich history of sustainability and tradition. In their prime, Shaker communities were largely self sufficient. They attempted to separate themselves from the busy outside world and create a peaceful haven that focused on growing their own food, constructing their own buildings, and manufacturing their own tools and furnishings. Every thing they did they did slowly, meticulously, and with intention.

Honesty, Utility and Simplicity in Shaker Craftsmanship

Their guiding principles of honesty, utility, and simplicity  found expression in their unique craftsmanship, as furniture, boxes, and textiles. Their work is world renowned for it’s beautifully minimalist design and unyielding quality. Their work rejected excessive ornamentation and focused on overall form, proportion, and quality.

The Shaker Style wood furniture we carry at Vermont Woods Studios is carefully crafted by expert Vermont woodworkers who pride themselves on creating beautiful, high quality  pieces built to last a lifetime. Their craftsmanship is a great reflection of the ever cherished Shaker wood furniture.

We hope that this holiday season, you’ll take some time to reflect on your own traditions and values. What kind of items do you want to fill your home with? What are your purchases saying about your values? We can all take a little inspiration from the Shakers, slow down a bit, and connect with what’s important this holiday season!

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.

Our Modern Shaker Furniture Collection is an ultra customizable collection featuring several different options for your home office. With a handful of desk options, we’ve chosen two of our favorites that we feel define the look of a professional Vermont style office.

Our Modern Shaker Desks are handcrafted to last a lifetime. One is sleek & simple, the other sturdy and grand… which fits your style?

Modern Shaker Campaign Desk Office Set (2)

The Modern Shaker Campaign Desk & Modern Shaker Office Desk. The Modern Shaker Campaign desk is sleek and simple, shown in ultra-modern walnut wood. This desk leaves plenty of open space under the desk for you to move around or to place file cabinets. This solid wood Modern Shaker Style Campaign Writing Desk will impress clients and friends who visit your home or office. Organize everything at your fingertips in its two accessory drawers and built-in pencil drawer.

Modern Shaker Office (3)
The Modern Shaker Executive Desk is a bold but transitional piece perfect for your executive office. It’s sturdy design makes it the ideal piece for an office that gets a lot of foot traffic and a lot of use! Shown in cherry wood, this classic American made desk is a great choice for a simplistic & stylish professional office. This fine luxury furniture is crafted using premium solid wood and is designed and built to last a lifetime. Organize everything at your fingertips in its two accessory drawers and 2 file drawers (standard or legal size). Choose between a rounded or straight edge profile. This solidly built Shaker desk is handcrafted to order in Vermont in your choice of solid cherry, maple, or walnut woods with a natural, eco-friendly non-toxic oil finish that not only protects, but enhances the natural beauty of the wood.

Let us know which one of these Modern Shaker Desks you love in the comments, or check out more of our hardwood desks online!

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.

Shaker End TablesShaker end tables have worldwide appeal, both as valued collectibles and as beautiful, unfussy pieces of furniture that go with anything in the home. 

Introduced over 200 years ago by the Shaker religious sect, this unfrilly furniture style has a truly timeless quality that makes sense for any style of home. Shaker end tables can accent your couch or other living room furniture with chic simplicity, and while they are not bold furniture designs, they make the perfect complementary pieces for your rustic or modern living room. Place your books, artwork, and most prized family photos atop your Shaker end table for a stylish, comfortable look. Mix and match your shaker end tables for a more eclectic aesthetic.

Shaker End Tables

Shaker end tables are light and airy, evoking a warm, country feel in any space they occupy. Traditionally, “country” style decor and furniture is sometimes seen as overly cluttered. The modern minimalism of Shaker end tables, however, is far from cluttered! Shaker style furniture is charactarized by its clean build, unassuming lines, and tapered leg shape. It’s beautiful in its simplicity and in its rich centuries old heritage.

Shaker end tables are some of the most versatile styles for your living room. So if you don’t feel comfortable committing to a certain style, this is the perfect type for you. Switch your styles around as much as you like and your Shaker end table will still look just as wonderful beside your couch or comfy living room chair.

What do you think, would you add a Shaker end table to your living room space? If not, what style do you like better?

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.

Summer Shaker Sale

 Buy More & Save with our Summer Shaker Sale

Shaker style furniture is one of our most adored styles at Vermont Woods Studios. People love it because its versatile, naturally beautiful, and built to last. Shaker furniture has a rich history and is world renowned for its modest elegance and durability. We love it for all of these reasons and more, which is why we’re excited to announce our Summer Shaker sale–where you can save up to 20% on Shaker Style furniture plus free shipping and a lifetime guarantee.

Take 10% off one piece, 15% off two pieces, and 20% off three or more pieces of Shaker Style furniture. Plus, receive free shipping and a lifetime guarantee.

You can shop securely, easily, and conveniently from our online gallery. Or, if you prefer, contact us at 888-390-5571 to order by phone or to discuss your questions about our Vermont Made Shaker furniture. Hurry! This sale ends at midnight on August 28th.

*Excludes Copeland, POLYWOOD, Barnwood, Artisan, and Clearance pieces.

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.