Jazz Art II: How to Acquire an Original Silk Painting

Last updated on October 11th, 2022 at 05:43 pm

In yesterday’s blog post we introduced the Jazz Art collection of original silk paintings by Vermont artist Linda Marcille.  Today– a little more about how silk paintings are created, a short bio of the artist and information on how to acquire this remarkable collection at a “Vermont price”.

About Silk Painting

Who is this female jazz singer performing with a quintet? Ella? Sarah? Nina?
Who is this female jazz singer performing with a quintet? Ella Fitzgerald? Sarah Vaughan? Nina Simone? Original silk painting by Linda Marcille, available exclusively at Vermont Woods Studios – Stonehurst.

Linda Marcille:

“Silk painting is an ancient Asian art form and it is very unique and mysterious. The silk itself is seemingly so fragile yet it is one of the strongest fibers in nature. There is also a serendipitous quality to painting on silk with dyes. The process never allows the artist to be fully in control or to know exactly the effect that will be created.

Painting on silk is an incredibly time-consuming and unforgiving medium. Just one drop of misplaced dye, or a broken resist line, and days of painstaking work are ruined. As challenging as painting on silk is, however, it is also one of the most rewarding art forms because the two-hour steaming process joins the fiber-reactive dyes molecularly with the silk, so the dyes take on the silk’s iridescent sheen. It is because of this union that silk paintings are able to produce an awe-inspiring range of reflective color that no other medium is capable of creating,”

Linda’s paintings feature the highest quality steam set French dyes from Europe, the finest crepe de chine silks from China and a one of a kind resist made only in New Zealand. Linda’s work appears in many publications. Her Jazz series has been showcased by the Guild of Silk Painters and featured in the Spring 2010 issue of their Journal.

About Artist Linda Marcille

Jazz trumpeter: Miles Davis? Dizzie Gillespie? Original silk painting by Linda Marcille.
Jazz trumpeter: Miles Davis? Dizzie Gillespie? Original silk painting by Linda Marcille. Original silk painting by Linda Marcille, available exclusively at Vermont Woods Studios – Stonehurst.

In 2012 Linda and her husband, Don, built a beautiful home and studio on 36 wooded acres in Westminster, Vermont where they are slowing down and living a more simplified life.  The creative process has been a powerful healing force in Linda’s life, she strongly believes in the healing properties of art, both for the viewer and the creator. She feels that art must be made available to those with chronic & terminal illness as part of their treatment plan. Linda has been battling an autoimmune disease caused by advanced neurological Lyme disease since 2000.

How to Purchase Linda’s Paintings

Do you have the perfect spot in your home for this remarkable series of Jazz paintings on silk?  We are proud to be able to offer them for purchase here at Stonehurst over the next couple months.  These are the only jazz paintings Linda has done out of an extensive body of work over many years and she will not be creating more like them.  They are an investment sure to increase in value.

The original paintings are priced very reasonably for the person or family who will cherish and care for them.  We would prefer to sell them as a set or perhaps split them into two sets, if necessary.  Dimensions are 29″W x 25″H, matted and framed (actual image approximately 20″W x 15″H).  For additional information or to purchase please call Peggy, Liz or any of our sales team at Vermont Woods Studios.  Looking to buy just one?  We’ll talk.

This is an investment opportunity of a lifetime for jazz lovers and art collectors!

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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.

True to Vermont: The Story of Copeland Furniture

Last updated on March 19th, 2019 at 02:10 pm

Copeland Vermont Made Monterey Bed
Copeland’s Monterey Collection

Founded in East Cornith, Vermont, Copeland Furniture is guided by its values of preservation and stewardship. Environmentally conscious before “green” was anything other than a color, Copeland has been expertly crafting heirloom-quality wood tables, chairs, desks, beds, and case goods since the 1970s.

Copeland’s commitment to stewardship is revealed in the woods they choose – all Copeland wood comes from within 500 miles of their factory, which means less fossil fuels used and less CO2 emitted into the atmosphere. Sourced primarily from the great American Northern Forest, Copeland uses durable and beautiful hardwoods like maple, cherry, and walnut, all of which is sustainably harvested. Their sustainable harvesting practices ensure that the Northern Forest will continue to be among the healthiest forests in the world, continuously building biomass. Plus, Copeland offers a water-based finish on most pieces – these formaldehyde-free finishes are every bit as durable as a catalyzed lacquer, but with drastically reduced VOC emissions at the factory and off-gassing the home.

Copeland Furniture Catalina Collection
Copeland’s Catalina Collection

Part of their commitment to the environment includes heirloom-quality craftsmanship. In some ways, these artisanal pieces are a response against the disposable. Copeland’s promise is to build furniture with the best materials and workmanship available, beautiful pieces that will be handed down for future generations to use daily and to enjoy for years to come.

This family-owned business started out as a one-man operation in East Cornith, but has grown to become a state-of-the art manufacturing facility on the banks of the Connecticut River in Bradford, Vermont. Copeland has skillfully adapted to changes in technology and the market – they expertly combine old-world handcraftsmanship with leading-edge advances computer-aided design. They identify their design aesthetic as “transitional,” neither strictly traditional or contemporary. Design influences are drawn from the Japanese, Shaker, and Scandinavian design styles, as well as from the landscape and culture of their home base of Vermont.

Copeland's Sarah Shaker style Cherry & maple bed
Copeland’s Sarah Shaker Style Cherry & Maple Bed

Copeland has worked hard to stay true to the New England traditions of quality craftsmanship and enduring design from which it emerged. They believe that continuous improvement is ultimately what best serves the customer and work to continue to innovate, while keeping a keen eye trained on the health and well being of the earth, its resources, and its employees and craftsman. Copeland Furniture, as a company, possesses great care and respect both for the land and those of us who live and work on it.

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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.

Vermont Contemporary Artist: Susan Osgood

Last updated on March 13th, 2019 at 05:16 pm

Vermont Contemporary Painter | Susan Osgood
Vermont Contemporary Painter, Susan Osgood Susan Osgood creates beautiful, colorful oil paintings (on paper, canvas and wood) inspired by such muses as snakes, rivers, hands and maps.

Last week Dennis and Kelsey and I went to Mondo MediaWorks in downtown Brattleboro where owner, Luke Stafford was hosting a Vermont Life Magazine Pitch Party.  Such a cool idea:  Mary Hegarty Nowlan and her staff from Vermont Life were traveling around the state inviting people to pitch their artwork, businesses, personal stories and such– for possible inclusion in future magazine issues.  So we pitched our Stonehurst Fine Furniture and Art Gallery story.  But the best part of the evening (other than free pizza, beer and wine) was getting to meet and hear the stories of many unique, talented and fascinating Vermonters.

Susan Osgood was one of them. She creates beautiful, colorful oil paintings (on paper, canvas and wood) inspired by such muses as snakes, rivers, hands and maps.  Susan showed us photos of many of her contemporary works and discussed the challenges of trying to make a living as an artist.  As with most artists, Susan has a second job.  Lucky for her (and the rest of us) it’s also in the art world.  She works for the University of Chicago’s archaeological project in Luxor, Egypt and has spent the last 25 winters there drawing the carved and painted reliefs of ancient tombs and temples.  Susan also worked on the KV 63 Tomb Project, (the first new tomb to be discovered in the Valley of the Kings since Tutankhamun’s in 1922) creating drawings of the coffins.  Wow, can you imagine being entrusted to record and interpret these pieces of human history dating back 3500 years or more?

As I listened to Susan’s presentation and that of several other artists, I was thinking of an article* written earlier this year, by Dave Ackert of the LA Times and realizing how true his words are:

“Artists are some of the most driven, courageous people on the face of the earth. They deal with more day-to-day rejection in one year than most people do in a lifetime…. Every day, artists face the financial challenge of living a freelance lifestyle, the disrespect of people who think they should get real jobs, and their own fear that they’ll never work again. Every day, they have to ignore the possibility that the vision they have dedicated their lives to is a pipe dream. With every role, they stretch themselves, emotionally and physically, risking criticism and judgment. With every passing year, many of them watch as the other people their age achieve the predictable milestones of normal life – the car, the family, the house, the nest egg. Why? Because artists are willing to give their entire lives to a moment – to that line, that laugh, that gesture, or that interpretation that will stir the audience’s soul. Artists are beings who have tasted life’s nectar in that crystal moment when they poured out their creative spirit and touched another’s heart. In that instant, they were as close to magic and perfection as anyone could ever be. And in their own hearts, they know that to dedicate oneself to that moment is worth a thousand lifetimes.”

Agree?  Tell Susan thanks for all the hard work she’s put into touching our hearts, opening our minds and stirring our souls.

*  Thanks to another Vermont artist, Linda Eaton-Marcille of Crow House Studio for re-posting Dave Ackert’s article on her facebook.

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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.

Vermont Road Trip: Dorset Custom Furniture

Last updated on March 13th, 2019 at 04:28 pm

Custom Furniture Makers | Dorset Vermont
Meet the master craftsmen of Dorset Vermont.  From left:  Bill Laberge, Bob Gasperetti, Steve Holman and Dan Mosheim.  These guys are world class expert furniture designers and woodworkers.  Their beautiful creations grace the Green Mountain State as well as public and private homes, businesses and galleries the world over.  

Dorset is one of the prettiest hamlets in all of Vermont, so Dennis and I were happy to make the trek to Dorset Custom Furniture last Friday.  For us, the main attraction wasn’t the quaint New England Village architecture or the view of the Green Mountain Forest.  It was to meet with Dan Mosheim and three more of Dorset’s famous custom furniture makers.  I guess it’s no coincidence that four of the country’s finest craftsmen have set up shop in this idyllic spot.  Dorset is quintessential Vermont at it’s finest and it’s natural beauty inspires artists and craftspeople from all walks of life.

Once we found our way to the slice of paradise that’s home to Dorset Custom Furniture we caught up with Dan, his wife Kit, and their sons Will and Sam.  The whole family is involved in the arts, creating not only furniture but also jewelry, musical instruments and sculpture.

Dan had invited three other powerhouses in custom furniture to meet with us:  Steve Holman of Holman Studios, Bob Gasperetti and Bill Laberge.  We were brainstorming ways to collaborate in shining a light on Vermont’s long legacy of creating sustainable, high end, custom furniture.  Dennis and I extended an invitation to the Dorset crowd to show their furniture at Stonehurst, our new fine furniture gallery so we will be working with them to make that happen before our grand opening this summer.

If you’re wandering around the world of Vermont arts and crafts before that, be sure to drop by Dorset and visit these fine furniture craftsmen in their studios.  I think you’ll find that in commissioning a piece of their custom furniture, you are acquiring much more that a functional piece of art.  I’m not sure how to describe but it has to do with getting in touch with a level of authenticity that is often missing in our lives.  I think you’ll just have to go to Dorset and check it out for yourself.  Then tell us about your experience on Facebook.  Happy travels!

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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.

Vermont Made Pottery Gifts by Mountaine Meadows

Last updated on November 18th, 2018 at 09:33 pm

I got a mysterious brown paper package in the mail yesterday.  The return address label said Mountaine Meadows Vermont Made Pottery, South Ryegate, Vermont.  I thought it was going to be a sample from one of our craftspeople in the Northeast Kingdom but instead it was an unexpected gift from my old pal, Doctor Blakley. I used to work for Sally at Tulane University in the distance learning section of the Center for Applied Environmental Public Health.  She was my champion during a pretty difficult time in my life.

But anyway… inside the package was a personal note from Sally and a beautiful handmade wall plaque with the traditional Irish Blessing my mother’s had hanging on the wall of her home for over 50 years:

May the road rise to meet you

May the wind be always at your back

May the sun shine warm upon your face

May the rains fall soft upon your fields

And until we meet again, my friend

May God hold you in the palm of his hand.

What a perfect gift!

If you’re ever looking for something special for a friend or relative, check out Mountaine Meadows Vermont Made Pottery.   They have tons of plaques, dishes and magnets with messages of all types:  funny, inspirational, religious, irreverent, sentimental… you name it.  All made in America, handcrafted in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont.

And thanks, Sally for your kind and thoughtful support throughout the years.  Did you notice that Mountaine Meadow let’s customers submit sayings for new pottery pieces?  I think I’ll submit one:  “old friends are the best friends”.

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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.

President Obama’s 500 “Made in Vermont” Limos

Last updated on August 14th, 2018 at 12:23 pm

President Obama's Limo | Handmade in Vermont
President Obama’s personalized Presidential Limo handcrafted in Vermont by Maple Landmark of Middlebury.  Congratulations to Mike Rainville and his staff for the impressive feat of producing 500 of these 2013 inauguration souvenirs in record time.

President Obama’s Limos

Does this seem excessive?  President Obama was presented with 500 personalized, limited edition limousines on his inauguration day, January 21, 2013.   Each handmade automobile was carefully crafted in Vermont by our friend (and leader of Vermont’s Wood Manufacturers Association VWMA) Mike Rainville and his staff at Maple Landmark Toys.

Dennis and I were lucky enough to see the limos last week at the annual VWMA meeting which was held in Middlebury, Vermont at the headquarters for Maple Landmark.  Actually, the toys were purchased by President Obama’s Inauguration Committee for resale as part of a fundraising activity to defray the cost of inauguration activities.  The cool thing is that there are still a couple of these keepsakes left and you can buy a limo online for $20.  Obama fans: hurry and scoop up this Vermont made souvenir before the secret gets out!

Mike Rainville, Leader of Maple Landmark and VWMA

On another note, I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank Mike Rainville for his leadership and dedication to our Vermont made furniture and woodworking industry.  As president of our industry group he’s been volunteering huge amounts of his time (for many years!) to promoting our craft and building synergy amongst our members.  As owner and founder of Maple Landmark he acts as an ambassador showing customers all across American and around the world the beauty and quality of Vermont made wood products.

Mike Rainville of Maple Landmark Toys | President Obama's Limos
Mike Rainville gave us a tour of Maple Landmark Toys.  His traditional wooden toys and trains are handcrafted one by one in Middlebury Vermont by Mike, his family members and a dedicated group of 30 employees.  Mike started the toy factory in his parent’s basement (when he was 14) using scraps from his grandfather’s carpentry projects.

Last week Mike told us the story of how President Obama’s inauguration staff phoned him on December 28 to ask if he could design, produce and deliver the limos to Washington for the January 21 event.  Less than a month’s time and during the holidays (a toy makers busiest season) too!  But Mike and his staff were happy for the opportunity and pulled out all the stops to get the job done.  He said the biggest challenge was getting timely government safety ratings and approvals but I guess the mention of his client might have greased the skids a bit on that.  Great job, guys.

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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.

Vermont Road Trips

Vermont Road Trips
Need a day off from skiing?  Take a Vermont road trip using the VT Forest Heritage trail guide.  Meet Vermont’s furniture makers and see how they incorporate nature into the sustainable furniture they design and build.

Some parts of the Green Mountain State may have run out of snow this week, but don’t let that deter you from jumping in the car and taking a couple Vermont road trips.  Our ski areas all make snow and temps have been perfect for doing that lately, so skiers are in the all set club.  But if you’re not a skier or your knees need a break we’ll post a few Vermont road trip suggestions you may not have thought about yet.

First up is the The Vermont Forest Heritage Trail.  It’s a driving tour of Vermont’s woodworking shops, studios and showrooms– large and small.  You can pick up a guide booklet at any Vermont Welcome Center or download it here.  In it you’ll find a Vermont map with dozens of furniture makers and their studios.  You’ll also find information on Vermont’s sustainable forestry industry and an invitation to the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historic Park, a managed forest in the central region of the state.

Here’s your chance to connect with nature and see how Vermont craftspeople incorporate it into the sustainable furniture they design and build.  This initial Heritage Tour goes through the middle of Vermont and features Clear Lake Furniture in Ludlow, Shackleton Thomas in Bridgewater and Copeland Furniture in Bradford.  Maple Landmark Toys are also included.  The Vermont Wood Manufacturing Association is working on updating the brochure with additional tours throughout the state so stay tuned for more options.  Happy trails to you!

 

 

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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.

Vermont Furniture Artisans Displays Exquisite Craftsmanship at Stowe Expo

Last updated on October 12th, 2022 at 09:29 pm

Steve Holman's Sideboard at "Source" expo | Vermont Custom Furniture
Steve Holman’s Curvy Drawer Sideboard is featured at Source, an exhibition of exquisite and creative Vermont custom furniture and craftspeople with a focus on the source of all elements that collaborate to make the final piece.  Source is now playing at the Helen Day Art Center in Stowe, Vermont.

Vermont Custom Furniture Showcased in Stowe

Vermont custom furniture takes center stage this month at the Helen Day Art Center in Stowe.   Members of the Guild of Vermont Furniture Makers are showcasing examples of their work, which (in my humble opinion) is among the finest custom furniture you’ll find anywhere.

The Stowe expo, Source  focuses on the origin of all elements that collaborate to make the final exquisite and creative piece. “The exhibit maps the source of materials, the relationships between forester, mill and craftsperson, as well as the path that the artists took (who influenced them, and where they learned their craft) to become furniture makers”.

Many of our favorite Vermont custom furniture makers are represented in Stowe, including: George Ainley, Erin Hanley, James Becker, Steve Holman, Hugo Belton, David Hurwitz, Richard Bissell, Bill Laberge, Dave Boynton, Mario Messina, Tim Clark, Dan Morsheim, Doug Clarner, Pete Novick, Johns Congdon, Walt Stanley and Bob Gasparetti.

Vermont Custom Furniture Show | Helen Day Center | Stowe
From left:  David Hurwitz’s free-form, wavy chest of drawers, Dave Boynton’s custom acoustic cabinet and Mario Messina’s Trillium chair.  See them up close and personal at Vermont’s Custom Artisan Furniture Show at the Helen Day Center in Stowe.

Where Does Your Furniture Come From?

At Vermont Woods Studios our focus has always been on “where does your furniture come from” particularly from an environmental perspective (where is the wood from and was it sustainably harvested).

What I love about this expo is that it takes a broader look into the origin of these works of art, focusing on the artists, their inspirations and the chain of partners involved in getting their wood from the forest to their studios.

If you’re heading up to Stowe to ski and you love woodworking, be sure to make time to stop at the Helen Day Center for a relaxing and inspiring visit.  Hours are Wednesday – Sunday 12pm-5pm and by appointment.  Admission is by donation.  It’s well worth the trip!

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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.

Brent Karner and ClearLake Furniture

Last updated on March 13th, 2019 at 04:00 pm

Vermont Woodworker of the Year: Brent Karner
Congratulations to Vermont Woodworker of the Year, Brent Karner of Clear Lake Furniture for his innovative design of high end stacking chairs for the University of Vermont’s Memorial Lounge.

Congratulations to Brent Karner of ClearLake Furniture in Ludlow for being selected Vermont Woodworker of the Year.  The award was presented to Brent last Friday by Mike Rainville, President of the Vermont Wood Manufacturing Association, VWMA. It was in recognition of his work in designing and crafting 150 eco-friendly, stackable cherry wood chairs for the University of Vermont’s Memorial Lounge on UVM’s Burlington campus.

Have you ever noticed that chairs in auditoriums are rarely handcrafted of solid wood and rarely comfortable?  Well it seems that Richard Cate, UVM Vice president for finance and administration decided to change that.  He insisted on finding a competitive bid for beautiful, comfy, high quality, Vermont made STACKABLE chairs and Brent Karner’s proposal fit the bill.

Brent, his brother and two of their craftsmen at Clear Lake Furniture spent 3 months designing and building the chairs.  Each chair contains 41 separate pieces.  Sheahan and Sons Lumber in Weatherfield transformed 400 local, sustainably harvested logs from Bethel, VT into 6,150 pieces of wood designed to Brent’s specs.  The seats were crafted by Don Heaton Upholstery in Chester, VT.  Everything from A to Z was locally made in Vermont!

Isn’t it great to see another example of Vermonters leading the way in the American Made manufacturing movement?

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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.

Vermont Artist, Paul Stone

Last updated on October 11th, 2022 at 05:34 pm

Paul Stone, Vermont Artist
Paul Stone is a native Vermonter who grew up in Westminster and has been painting since he was a young boy. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Tufts University. While I was admiring Paul’s paintings at the I-91 Guilford Welcome Center, I learned that Paul is also a dentist.  What?  Like this post if you think it’s unfair for one person to have such an abundance of talent.  Haha!

Vermont’s Most Surprising Art Galleries: Our Welcome Centers

Lucky me.  I stopped by the Interstate 91 N Guilford Welcome Center (a mile south of Brattleboro on I91) the other day to drop off some brochures and stumbled upon a beautiful collection of oil paintings by nationally acclaimed Vermont artist, Paul Stone.  You never know what amazing stuff you’re going to find at Vermont’s Welcome Centers (it’s not unusual for Paul Stone’s painting to sell for over $10,000 each)!

Paul Stone is a master at capturing quintessential Vermont rural scenes like the barns and farmhouses in my snapshot above.  He’s known for his use of light, shadows and a vibrant palette to create scenes that are realistic and abstract at the same time.  Maybe it’s because I live in Vermont but when I look at Paul’s work I feel like I’m inside his scenes, enjoying the view and the moment.

Apparently many others around the world feel a similar connection to Paul’s work because it hangs in numerous corporate and private collections around the world.  Paul Stone’s shows are relatively rare events so if you love art and you’re coming to Vermont to enjoy the last few days of leaf peeping season be sure to stop at the Guilford Welcome center and take this one in.

A little bit of background about the artist:  Paul is a native Vermonter who grew up in Westminster and has been painting since he was a young boy.  He is a graduate of  Dartmouth College and Tufts University.  While I was admiring Paul’s paintings, I happened to see my neighbors from Earth’s Supergrains who told me Paul used to be their dentist.  What?  Like this post if you think it’s unfair for one person to have such an abundance of talent.  Haha!

For more information on Paul Stone’s artwork, check out his website and or contact Greg Worden at Vermont Artisans Designs on Main Street in Brattleboro to find out about Paul’s next show.

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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.