September 22nd, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Dear Governor Shumlin,
We know you’re busy with economic development, health insurance and other important issues. But we’re hoping you can break free and make a quick trip to Vernon on Tuesday October 22 at 3pm for our ribbon cutting ceremony at Stonehurst, Vermont Woods Studios‘ new fine furniture showroom and art gallery.
Now I realize one might ask why such a busy man would carve time out of an already ambitious schedule to visit a small Vermont furniture business? We’ve thought of many reasons, but here are the Top 10. At Stonehurst you can:
If that’s not enough to convince you, how about just sitting down to relax and enjoy the view? That alone makes Stonehurst worth the trip.
September 14th, 2013 by Kelsey Eaton
Stonehurst continues to see lots of updates and upgrades! From our beautiful walk way, to our new utility shed, to the updated deck being built outback– the improvements are coming along quickly and creating a truly picturesque place to showcase our Vermont Style Furniture.
We know that a lot of our friends and customers like to keep up to date with whats happening around Stonehurst, just out of general curiosity or to find out when is the best time to plan for a visit.
And despite all of the updates going on around Stonehurst, we’re happy to have guests! The inside of the showroom looks absolutely beautiful, fully adorned with high-end decor and one of a kind art pieces from local Vermont artisans.
Here, take a peek for yourself!
Well, there’s a tiny peek at what the showroom looks like. We’ll save the rest for your first visit! See you soon!
September 8th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
One of the challenges of running an online fine furniture store is taking enough professional quality photos to be able to accurately portray your quality and craftsmanship on the web. At Vermont Woods Studios we’ve been collecting photos for many years but everyday there is a need for new ones.
Luckily, Stonehurst (our new fine furniture and art gallery) provides us with an ideal space for taking high quality pictures to post on our website. Above Dennis and consultant Nina Markiw of White Blossom Art are setting up for silhouette shots– this one is of the handmade Cherry Moon vertical mirror.
Soon they’ll be photographing fine furniture vignettes throughout Stonehurst– both indoors and out. Stay tuned for inspirations and ideas from these two creative photographers. Our goal is not just to convey our quality but also to bring the natural beauty and tranquility of Stonehurst into your home. And maybe even persuade you to make a trip to Vermont to see our handmade fine furniture in person.
Leaf peeping season’s not far away. Grab a picnic basket, a bottle of wine, maybe some Vermont artisan cheese and you’ll be in the all set club. Home decor shopping will never be the same after you’ve visited the fine furniture and art gallery at Stonehurst.
September 3rd, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Just a quick plug for our local Vermont Farmers Markets today…
Like sweet corn and tomatoes, sunflower season (in the words of Dorothy) “comes and goes so quickly around here”. So I thought we might inspire you to run out to your local farm stand or farmers market to grab some while you can. Annette and I visited the Brattleboro Farmers Market this weekend, where half a dozen vendors had beautiful local flowers for sale. Don’t they look nice in front of our new indigo door at Stonehurst?
Here’s a link to Vermont Living‘s run down of Southern Vermont farmers markets and their hours of operation. The Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont has a great searchable directory for farmers markets throughout the Green Mountain state.
Now is the heart of harvest season… don’t let it slip away without a trip to see our farmers. You’ll be glad you did!
August 28th, 2013 by Loryn DionWhat do you think of Janet Picard’s oil paintings?
You may have noticed from our past blogs that a lot is happening here at Stonehurst. New driveways, new furniture, new landscapes and new… art? One of the areas we have been exploring for our showroom is displaying beautiful, handmade pieces from artists across Southern Vermont. It’s our belief that our customers love the beauty and elegance of our handmade furniture, so showcasing our furniture with paintings and sculptures that evoke the same feelings just makes sense.
One of the artists that I had the chance to meet with this week and who will be showcasing her paintings in the months to come is Janet Picard. I discovered Janet’s work while browsing through a few artist groups located in the Brattleboro area. The pieces above really stuck out to me because it seemed to capture everything I love about Vermont’s forests.
Janet uses bright colors and expressionistic strokes to create unusual yet realistic paintings of landscapes, forests and flowers. Janet’s art is beautiful to look at and is a modern take on a traditional style of painting. Janet describes her paintings as “merging actual places with imagined visions.” After chatting with Janet for a while on Tuesday, Douglas and I agree that Janet will make a fine addition to our showroom and we think our customers will agree.
Janet has a showroom of her own at her studio in West Brattleboro right behind the Chelsea Royal Diner. Speaking of which, when she’s not spreading oil on canvas you can find her making ice cream for Chelsea Royal, which she and her partner own. If you haven’t been there yet, it’s worth stopping. Their menu features ingredients grown right on their own farm! They have free-range chickens, grass-fed beef and some very well fed pigs. What better way to absorb Vermont culture than to enjoy a plate of locally-produced cuisine and then take-in some gorgeous, Vermont inspired art.
We’re so excited to have Janet’s work gracing the walls of Stonehurst! She’s just one of a few artists that you’ll be able to see on display when you come to visit our fine furniture showroom. Stop by and check it out or be on the look-out for the arts section of our website, coming soon!I’m thinking we’ll put Janet’s pieces up right here! What do you think?
August 27th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
Earlier this month I posted about Gordon Hayward, the landscape architect who is helping us bring our vision for the “Stonehurst Experience” into reality. We want Stonehurst to be a peaceful refuge where customers seeking natural, eco-friendly wood furniture can come and relax in the foothills of Vermont’s Green Mountain Forest.
Beautiful, handmade furniture is just one part of the Stonehurst experience. The other part is immersion in the lush green forest where wood furniture originates. In order to provide access to the forest, we’ve turned to Torben Larsen of Windham Growers. Torben is Southern Vermont’s go-to guy for top quality stonework and landscaping.
Since we don’t have photos of stonework at Stonehurst yet, I thought I’d show you some of Torben’s work at Guilford Sound, an amazing, world class recording studio, hidden in Guilford, VT the next town over. Torben’s wife Cynthia who manages the studio at Guilford Sound was nice enough to show us the inside of the facility. Gordon and Torben toured us through the gardens, ponds, streams and forest. What a place! Check them out on Facebook.
August 24th, 2013 by Kelsey Eaton
Stonehurst has been crazy lately, and in a good way! Settling in here has been great, and quiet for a while… but for the last few days we’ve been nonstop with renovations, visitors, and new fine furniture! Woot! The showroom is starting to fill up and look more like a home, and i’m so excited to watch it progress as we move forward with the landscaping, furniture, and art! So while there isn’t too much more to say, I’m going to post some photos from the last few days so you can get a peek at whats going around the showroom.
August 21st, 2013 by Kelsey Eaton
As promised in my last blog, here is the new color of the doors at Stonehurst! Blue! What is so great about it is that they aren’t a traditional door color, and we think that really fits with the personality of Vermont Woods Studios and the quirky folks who work here. While several people asked why we didn’t go with green to fit with our company colors, blue turned out to be a better fit. It brings out the natural blues of the sky and contrasts wonderfully with the white paint, plus, it’s going to look amazing once all of the landscaping and outdoor decor is in place. I’m really happy with the way the doors turned out, and I know that the rest of the Green Team is too! But we want to know what you think about them, let us know on Facebook!
August 15th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
It’s been almost a year now since we purchased Stonehurst, the 200+ year old farmhouse we’ve grown to know and love. From the beginning when we first conceptualized this showcase of Vermont’s best handmade furniture, fine art and home decor accessories we decided to renovate with local products. We worked with Brattleboro architect Jeremy Coleman and Spofford builder, Bob Furlone (American Construction) to reuse and re-purpose everything we could in an effort to keep Stonehurst authentic. And when we needed to purchase building materials new, we sourced Vermont made products where possible.
Dennis, Heather B, Kelsey and I have written many Stonehurst blog posts describing the details of how we renovated and where materials came from. But I wanted to do a final run-down to recognize and thank the Vermont companies that made Stonehurst the authentic showcase it is today. Here’s the list:
A million thanks to all of you for making Stonehurst the special place it is! I must also thank Vermont taxpayers and the people who worked on the Vermont Working Lands Grant Initiative. Earlier this year they awarded Vermont Woods Studios a $100,000 grant to help complete the Stonehurst project.
To follow through on our “all things Vermont” theme, we are now working with local artisans to adorn the inside of Stonehurst with Vermont made fine furniture, artwork and home decor items. Soon you will be able to see that, plus lighting by Hubbardton Forge, glassware and pottery by Simon Pearce and pewter by Danforth Pewter all under one roof. Come visit and enjoy!
August 10th, 2013 by Peggy Farabaugh
OK, Sally Blakley and other dear readers: I can explain. I know I asked for your opinion on the exterior paint makeover for Stonehurst. And I know you voted overwhelmingly to keep the old barn-red color. And I loved that classic look too. But…
We have a couple things going on that swayed my decision off in the opposite direction. First of all, there’s the landscaping. You may have read about the plans we’re making with Gordon Hayward (landscape architect) and Torben Larsen (landscaper and stone mason) to add colorful lilacs, hydrangeas, peonies, lavender and all sorts of other wonderful plants to the front yard.
Second, we’ve been trying to renovate Stonehurst as authentically as possible. We’ve recycled, re-invigorated and reused existing parts and filled in with local Vermont made components whenever we needed something new.
And, well… the original color of Stonehurst back circa 1790 was farmhouse white. Lastly, there’s the matter of our green and white logo, as you can see on the sign. Don’t you think there’s some harmony going on between the sign and the white house with nature’s greenery all around?
Let me know what you think on our Facebook and we’ll duke it out there. In the meantime, if you’re interested in painting your own house, check out these 13 Dramatic Exterior Paint Makeovers on Houzz. Then post your own before and after photos for all of us to see!