Vermont Woods Studios is having an extended Black Friday Furniture Sale!
Ever wonder how Black Friday started? As someone who has never really participated in this massive day of shopping, I was curious this year to find out how it all began and how it got to be so big.
We all know how Thanksgiving started-Pilgrims and Native Americans came together in Plymouth, MA to celebrate a successful harvest after the harsh winters had claimed many of the unprepared colonial settlers lives. It wasn’t until 1863 and the end of the Civil War, that President Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving Day a national holiday.
To make your bedroom feel new again, you don’t need to hire a designer and do a total makeover. There are several fun and simplistic things you can do to give your bedroom that freshness you’ve been craving!
1. Decorative pillows: Prices can range from super high end to nice and affordable. My favorite place to shop for new decorative pillows is the local thrift store. Mix & match for an eclectic look, sure to bring new life into your space.
2: Plants: Literally bring life into your bedroom! When things are feeling a little dull and uninspiring, introduce your favorite houseplant to your bedroom. They’re nice to look at, and many are super good for your health!
3. Accessorize with wood furniture: There’s a lot of wood furniture than can be used in a variety of different ways. This beautiful Copeland dining chair is very versatile, and would nicely complement your bedroom furniture! Put a pillow on top of it or leave it on its own, the beauty of this chair speaks for itself and makes a truly stylish accent piece.
4. Change your hardware: Are you currently using regular, cheap hardware for your windows & etc? Switch over to something a little more stylish! There are many options for high quality curtain rods & accessories.
5. Temporary Wallpaper. From bold and daring to modest and traditional, there is a temporary wallpaper for you. Add a statement wall or use it all across the entire bedroom to give you a totally new look without much cost or effort!
I’ve been looking for a definition of “solid wood furniture“. I’m finding the same thing I found when I looked for a definition of “American made furniture”. Anything goes. Here’s an example of what I found on a popular reference website (About.com),
Solid walnut wood furniture means that all exposed parts of the piece are wood. But the frame and inner parts may be of other, less-costly wood. Thin layers of fine, decorative wood can be bonded to the face of low cost wood pieces. This is called veneering.
Now does that sound like solid wood furniture to you? I don’t think so. If you’re shopping for high quality furniture and solid wood construction is important to you, try asking your salesperson these 5 questions to help clarify things:
Is This Real Solid Wood Furniture or Veneered?
When you take a look at the edge of a solid wood tabletop you can see if the graining on the top carries through on the edge – the way marbling does in a piece of steak. If this is not the case, you are looking at the “banding” on a veneered piece. Another way to tell solid wood is to look at the underside of the piece. Does the grain look like the same as the wood on the table top? If not, then it’s probably veneered.
Is this Furniture Made Of Hardwood of Softwood?
In North America, typically the best quality solid wood furniture is made of native hardwoods, such as cherry, walnut, maple, oak, ash and birch. Although hardwood is more expensive than softwood, it has a higher density and is therefore usually harder and heavier. Hardwood grain is closed, tight and non-resinous as opposed to softwood grain that’s loose and resinous, thus it splits easy.
Is the Craftsmanship Top Quality?
You can buy plenty of solid wood furniture that’s of poor quality. For example, I just searched for “solid hardwood furniture high quality” and Google shopper’s first result was a solid wood bed for $68.98. What good does it do to have solid wood construction when poor workmanship is going to limit the life of a piece to a couple years? Check for solid craftsmanship, top quality joinery and meticulous finishes in your furniture. A salesperson should be able to show and tell you about construction details such as mortise and tenon joints, dovetails, miter joints, finger joints, splines, biscuits, dowels, butts, dados, rabbets, tongue and groove and more. Durable, robust joinery is critical to the life and usefulness of a piece.
Finish is important too. Most imported furniture is finished with cheap coatings that contain VOCs (volatile organic compounds like formaldehyde and benzene) which can cause asthma and allergies especially in young children. Ask your salesperson to explain what’s in the finish and how many coats have been applied to protect the furniture over time.
Is This American Made or Imported Furniture?
Are you wondering why imported furniture is so much cheaper than American made furniture? It’s not just that Chinese wages are about 1/10 of American wages. It’s about where the raw materials come from. In the USA, wood furniture is made from sustainably harvested wood that comes from well managed American forests. With imported furniture, the wood is typically clear cut from the world’s rapidly disappearing rainforests. Although imported furniture often carries labels that it’s made of American cherry, walnut, oak or maple woods, that is rarely the case. These labels are trade names used to describe woods of suspicious origin that are stained to look like familiar American woods such as cherry and walnut.
Am I Getting The Best Value & Price?
Top quality solid wood furniture is inherently expensive, so you’ll want to be sure you’re getting the best value and price. Find a local craftsman or retailer you can trust. Try to purchase your furniture as a set, rather than piece by piece. Purchasing furniture sets not only creates efficiency in the craftsman’s workshop, it also saves money in shipping and delivery.
For more tips on purchasing top quality solid wood furniture with the best value and price, visit our Facebook and join the conversation.
The Estelle chair is an ultra modern, geometrical chair that highlights the minimalist beauty and style of mid-century modern furniture. Sculpted in solid American Walnut wood, this side chair has a slender, vertically split back and finely sculpted seat for the ultimate in comfort. Rounded, angular tapered legs complete the stunning contemporary design.
The Estelle chair is unique in it’s versatility– making any room instantly more chic and well styled. This elegant chair has made its rounds on Polyvore, with dozens of people creating stunning sets using it as an accent to their dream rooms & decor. What struck me is how these sets really bring out the ways in which the Estelle chair can be used, and the variety of rooms it will fit in.
Some of our favorite Polyvore sets featuring the Estelle chair include:
Can you imagine this beautiful midcentury modern chair in your home? Register for Polyvore and start making your sets now! You’ll find the Estelle chair on Polyvore here. Create other cool Polyvore sets and share them with us! Post your set to our Facebook page, the comments section of this blog, or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org
Hardwood furniture is experiencing a renaissance this year. It’s always been a classic, but over the years modern materials (metal, plastics, glass, wicker, rattan, bamboo, concrete) have become popular furniture components. Looking at today’s online home decor authorities such as Houzz and Apartment Therapy however, it seems real solid hardwood furniture is making a comeback! Here’s a run-down of the Top 5 Hardwood Furniture Style Trends we’ve seen at Vermont Woods Studios this year: