February 18th, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh
Next stop on my tour of Vermont’s luxury home decor providers is lighting manufacturer, Hubbardton Forge. If you’ve had to buy or install lighting fixtures over the last few decades you’re no doubt aware that most lighting is manufactured in Asia these days and the quality isn’t what it used to be.
Enter Hubbardton Forge of Castleton. The company was established in 1974 by two guys in a barn who set out to revive the forgotten craft of hand-forging raw metal into contemporary designs. Today the business started by George Chandler and Reed Hampton is one of the largest contemporary commercial forges in America. Forty years of practicing time honored principles have built an international reputation for innovative designs, simplicity and integrity.
During my visit to the forge I met with Art Director, Wendy Fannin to show her what we’re doing at Stonehurst and discuss possible strategies to cross-promote our products. Both companies share a passion for simple elegance, traditional craftsmanship and a commitment to environmental stewardship so it seems some synergy could be achieved.
At Vermont Woods Studios we’re looking forward to receiving our first order of Hubbardton forge chandeliers, floor lamps, sconces and table lamps very soon and I’m eager to see how they transform our space. They’ll be accompanied by fine furniture from studios all around the state, glassware from Simon Pearce, ceramics from Laura Zindel and hopefully linens from Anichini and furniture/pottery from Shackleton-Thomas.
Keep posted on our latest inventory and/or plan a trip to see everything in person at Stonehurst!
February 5th, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh
Michelle and I are the only ones who’ve made it in to work today. Snow is falling ever so gently, but it’s persistent! We’ve got about 6″ and the forecast is for 6 more. So I thought it would a good time to reprint this article that was recently published on Sotheby’s Vermont Country Properties blog. We are grateful to President and Principal Broker Lisa Coneeny and Office Manager Melissa Olson for posting it.
Jeremy Davis, author of “Lost Ski Areas of Southern Vermont” estimates there were 119 ski areas in the Green Mountain state during the mid 20th century. It seems that 2/3 of Vermont’s towns had their own ski area! Of course they were a far cry from today’s luxury resorts like Mount Snow, Stratton, Killington and Stowe. But back in the day, they were the center of winter activity in the communities they served. Now what has become of them?
A group of local enthusiasts at Vermont Woods Studios has recently transformed the former Pine Top ski area in Vernon, Vermont into a showcase for Vermont’s handcrafted, fine furniture and home décor products. The 220 year old farmhouse that used to welcome Nordic and alpine skiers has been lovingly restored. Known as “Stonehurst” since c1870 when it was sold to Lucretia Kendall for a sum of $2000, it is now home to a high end interior design gallery.
“With all it’s rich history we thought Stonehurst would be the perfect place to showcase the high quality home décor products coming out of Vermont”, said Peggy Farabaugh, new owner of the property. “The homestead is situated on a hundred acre wood with beautiful views of the mountains, forests and Connecticut River Valley. Customers can look out our windows and see Vermont’s sustainable working lands in action. Stonehurst gives us a way to show and tell the story of Vermont’s high quality, handcrafted products: where they come from and how they’re made.”
The gallery features a revolving selection of fine furniture from Vermont’s iconic brands including Copeland, Lyndon and many custom and specialty furniture makers. Original artwork by Linda Marcille, Susan Osgood, Donna Scully, Georgie Runkle and other local artists accents the furniture and is offered for sale.
“We’re adding new products daily and hope to soon have a consummate collection of Vermont home goods with glassware by Simon Pearce, lighting by Hubbardton Forge, kitchen accessories by JK Adams, pottery by Laura Zindel and a creative selection of specialty handmade items from the area’s top craftspeople,” said Farabaugh.
Visitors are warmly welcomed at Stonehurst. Hours of operation are 9am-5pm, Mon-Sat. Details and directions to the gallery on Huckle Hill Road in Vernon can be found on our website. Be sure to bring your sled, skis or snowshoes!
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.
January 29th, 2014 by Kelsey Eaton
We know that buying fine wood furniture is a big investment, and we want you to feel as comfortable as possible making a decision that we believe, shouldn’t be rushed.
We believe that there is no better place to shop for Vermont wood furniture than in our showroom, nestled in the woods of Vernon, Vermont. All of our furniture comes from sustainably harvested forests, much like the one right in our backyard. Shopping at Stonehurst brings you closer to where your furniture really comes from. Visit us, and experience the beauty of Vermont wood, inside and out.
Unlike your traditional furniture shopping experience, at Stonehurst there is no need to rush. Feel free to bring a bottle of wine and a picnic lunch, and enjoy a relaxed country atmosphere while you get to know our furniture. Each member of our sales staff is an expert in Vermont wood, so even if you aren’t ready to purchase, we’d love for you to stop by and have a conversation with one of our friendly staff members and get to know more about Vermont Woods Studios.
At Stonehurst, we don’t have aisle after aisle of furniture. The pieces we carry at Stonehurst are just a representative sampling of the hundreds of pieces we offer on our online store. The pieces that we have in the showroom are a true reflection of the quality and craftsmanship that you can expect with all of our furniture.
Besides Vermont’s rich tradition for handcrafted furniture, Vermont is also known for its talented artisans. Did you know that Vermont has more artisans per capita than any other state in the US? We carry a variety of interior décor and artisans pieces in celebration of Vermont’s history of fine artistry and craftsmanship, and because we understand that designing your home doesn’t end at the hardwood 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. |
January 22nd, 2014 by Kelsey Eaton
As I walked around our beautiful furniture and decor showroom today, I found myself in meditative awe at how beautiful even the smallest details can be. From the furniture to the pottery, linen, and artwork– the simplicity of a curve, line, or edge proved to be just as beautiful as the whole.
The way light shines on the wood, reflects on the glass, or highlights the intricacy of a piece of pottery are such subtle aspects of our showroom that should not be overlooked.
I’ll keep this post short, and invite you to visit our showroom to see for yourself the exquisite detailing in each piece we have at Stonehurst.
January 8th, 2014 by Kelsey Eaton
Just yesterday we received a wonderful review from one of our customers. She had visited Stonehurst to get a true feel for the quality of our pieces, and needless to say, had a great Vermont Furniture shopping experience with us in person and online! Here is what she had to say:
Our bedroom furniture has arrived and we love it! It is beautiful. Everything about this experience was perfect – the showroom tour, where everyone was so friendly and helpful, and where there was a lot to look at, the furniture itself, the update halfway through, and the delivery.
Thank you – we made do for a long time with used furniture I never really liked that much. This was worth the wait and the money. I’m already looking forward to another trip (when it’s a bit warmer out!) to see you, and a few more Vermont Woods additions to our household.
–B.R from Rhode Island
We’re so glad that B.R (name withheld for privacy) had a good experience with us, and proves to us that making a visit to Stonehurst before you place an order can enhance your shopping experience and allow you to see just how beautiful our wood furniture is. If you too have been using old, used furniture in your home; consider making the upgrade to custom handcrafted wood furniture instead. Backed by a lifetime guarantee, it’s more than worth it.
Do you have a great Vermont Woods Studios review to share? Post your experience in the comments section, leave us a note on Facebook, or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
January 5th, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh
This is for Sally, Pam, Ellen, Annette, Mo and all our friends from the South and West who have escaped this year’s good old fashioned Vermont winter. Today’s storm took a break this morning just in time for me to snap this photo of the furniture showroom and art gallery we call Stonehurst. It was 5F when I got to work today but warm and toasty inside.
Plenty of toboggans and sleds are out on the back porch, ready for action. But where are our young, hearty, adventurous riders? No need for a membership to Outer Limits this winter, Sean. Just bring your boots to work and trade your lunch for a couple good runs down the ski slopes. I’ll go too and we’ll share the prize for biggest loser in the 2014 weight loss challenge. Any teasing from Liz, Michelle and Loryn will surely cease and desist when we walk in all strong and fit.
Here’s Ken’s baby. This Central Boiler Outdoor Wood Furnace from Temple Plumbing and Heating in Putney keeps us warm and toasty all winter long. A green source of energy, it’s fed by wood from around the grounds at Stonehurst. The furnace supplies a radiant heating system under the floorboards throughout the furniture showroom.
So that’s what Stonehurst looks like today. Stop by and see for yourself. Sean has hot chocolate and his own homemade cookies waiting for you. Shoes are not required inside the showroom.
January 1st, 2014 by Peggy Farabaugh
People ask me why on earth I would put a fine furniture store in the middle of nowhere, aka rural Vermont. Finding people who are looking to buy American made sustainable wooden furniture is hard enough. After all, customers typically have to wait 6-12+ weeks to have their furniture custom handcrafted and specialty shipped to their homes. Plus… compared to imported furniture, American made furniture is more expensive. With such a small number of people fitting our customer profile (willing to wait for their furniture to be handcrafted of sustainably harvested wood by Vermonters earning a living wage), wouldn’t it be smarter to have our store on main street in a big city with maximum exposure and traffic?
I’m sure that’s true for most fine furniture stores but at Vermont Woods Studios we’re on a mission to raise awareness about where your fine furniture comes from. Wood furniture comes from the forest and we believe the people involved in all aspects of furnishing your home have an opportunity to show you how choosing sustainable furniture makes a difference: in forest conservation, global warming, clean air, wildlife preservation and in the way you feel when you’re sharing a meal at your table.
See this barred owl who visited us at Stonehurst today? He’s able to be here because (under the direction of professional forester Lynn Levine) we’re managing 100 acres of forest for wildlife habitat. We believe businesses have as much obligation as governments to conserve our planet’s resources and protect endangered species. We believe our customers support that philosophy and want to see it in action. As we venture into the new year we extend our thanks to them and pledge our continued efforts in the area of forest and wildlife conservation.
Come visit our sustainable furniture showroom at Stonehurst. See first-hand how your choice of furniture can make the world a better place.
December 30th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Much has happened to our little Vermont furniture store in 2013. Most notably, we’re no longer housed at George’s Mill, adjacent to the Vernon post office. 2013 brought continued growth that gave us enough confidence to expand into a permanent location.
Stonehurst is our new home– a 200 year old farmhouse sited on Pine Top, a former ski area in Southeastern Vermont. Citing our furniture showroom on a scenic 100 acre forested lot helps us raise awareness about our mission of forest conservation and show customers where their furniture comes from. It was this concept that the state of Vermont supported through a $100,000 competitively awarded 2013 Working Lands grant that helped us complete Stonehurst renovations 2 years ahead of schedule.
Other progress in 2013 included adding a fine art gallery to our offerings. In addition to expanding our Vermont made furniture selection, we’re proud to offer original artwork by many important Vermont artists including Susan Osgood, Linda Marcille, Georgie Runkle, Donna Scully and Janet Picard.
Another 2013 showroom (and website) addition was Vermont made home decor. We now carry handcrafted ceramics by Brattleboro artist Laura Zindel and Vernon potter Bronna Zlochiver, kitchen accessories by JK Adams of Dorset, textiles by Donna Tosi of Vernon and Cricket Radio of Shelburne and hand-turned pens by Micah Ranquist of West Brattleboro. New artisans are joining us frequently to increase the variety of Vermont made home decor accessories we can make available at Stonehurst.
2013 also brought many important upgrades to our website, thanks to Neville and Martin up in our genius room. As a new employee in 2013 Martin, was joined by Michelle (in Sales and Customer Service) and Kelsey and Nina (in Marketing). We feel very lucky to have them join the Vermont Woods Studios family!
After 8 years of building this sustainable furniture business– in 2013 we are finally in a space that’s truly worthy of the beautiful handcrafted furniture Vermont is so famous for. With customers journeying here from all across the country, we can finally say “Come to Stonehurst. It’s worth the trip”.
We are immensely grateful to our creative and hard-working staff for making this 2013 progress possible. Although we’ve come a long way, we know that in many ways our efforts have just begun. In 2013 we built it. In 2014 we have to make sure they come. Please help us spread the word! Join us on Facebook or in the comments section below. We’d love to hear your thoughts on Vermont’s sustainable furniture and/or the Stonehurst experience.
December 19th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
The last few days have brought a bounty of fluffy white snow setting us up for a beautiful first Christmas at Stonehurst. Ken went out to the old carriage shed and rescued this antique sign that marked entry to the Pine Top Ski Area from the 1940s to the 1960s. It’s now resting safely in our mudroom (er- entryway) accompanied by all the latest maps, magazines and brochures on Vermont travel (did I mention that we’re now an official Vermont Information Center? More about that later).
For a small ski area in a small town, it’s amazing how many people have stopped by to tell us stories of when they skied here at Pine Top 50 years ago. We had a lovely couple from Manhattan visit us a few weeks ago. They were here to shop for furniture but after looking out the window at the ski slopes and seeing the Pine Top sign, Marcia realized that she had skied here when she was a boarding student at Northfield School (now NMH). What a coincidence!
Today the sign out front welcomes people to Stonehurst, Vermont’s sustainable furniture showroom and art gallery. With all the freshly fallen snow, now is one of the prettiest times of year to visit Stonehurst. If you’re longing for the old fashioned Christmas you remember as a kid, stop by and see us. We’ve got hot chocolate, warm apple cider and of course there’s always a bottle of red in the wine rack. Christmas shopping was never this fun, even back in the 1950s!
December 18th, 2013 by Kelsey Eaton
Since we’ve made the transition over to Stonehurst, our new headquarters and showroom, we’ve had some of the most wonderful experiences with our customers. It’s been a pleasure for us to meet our guests in person and help them have a comfortable and easy Vermont furniture shopping experience. From helping our guests choose Vermont made decor and artwork for their homes, to assisting in the creation of the perfect custom furniture, or simply giving guidance for furniture upkeep; we love that our guests are excited about their shopping experience with us.
Jeannie and Jeff S., are two of our customers who made a trip out to Stonehurst to see our furniture up close before they made any decisions. Pleased with our showroom and the quality of our designs, they decided to purchase a bedroom set and new dining room furniture. The photos included in this blog were sent in by them, along with this lovely note:
“We had a wonderful experience at Vermont Wood Studios starting with our thoughtful and extensive meeting with Sean at your lovely Brattleboro showroom. Sean gave excellent advice to customize our order and kept in touch while the craftspeople made our bedroom and dining room furniture. It was delivered earlier than expected by the very capable ALB Transport in perfect condition. We are absolutely thrilled by the beauty and uniqueness of the bed, dressers, dining room table and chairs. We are happy to recommend both the furniture and customer oriented values of Vermont Wood Studios!
With much appreciation,
Jeannie and Jeff S.”
We really appreciate this positive feedback, and are proud to showcase Vermont wood furniture in such a grand location (& with such a great staff!). Our team is here at Stonehurst Monday-Saturday 9-5, and we’d love for you to visit to see for yourself! Visiting Stonehurst before you shop online makes the buying experience that much more comfortable, as you’ll see first hand the luxurious quality of our handcrafted furniture designs in a natural Vermont home setting.