Vermont Woods Studios Supports the Middlebury College Solar Decathlon Team!

Last updated on August 14th, 2018 at 01:32 pm

By Dennis Shanoff

Making its debut in 2002 and then biannually since 2005 is the US Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon. This competition challenges 20 collegiate teams to design, build, and operate solar powered, energy efficient homes that are cost effective, functional, and attractive. The winning team will have successfully blended affordability, consumer appeal and design excellence with optimal energy production and maximum efficiency. The fifth event will take place Sept. 23–Oct. 2, 2011 at the National Mall’s West Potomac Park in Washington, D.C. and is open to the public, free of charge.

 

Customers and fans of Vermont Woods Studios are aware of our environmental and social mission and our community of eco friendly furniture makers that are dedicated not only to beauty and quality in our craft, but also to the preservation of our natural environment. So you can imagine our excitement to be a part of the project and support the Vermont Solar Decathlon team by contributing a bed!

 

You see Vermont’s own Middlebury College is participating in the Solar Decathlon so when one of the schools team members reached out to us for a furniture donation we were thrilled to to no end to be part of such an important “Green Mission” event. This is such a great way to raise awareness about solar energy and sustainable lifestyles. Middlebury SD team member Casey Peterson had contacted us during the team’s research for interior furnishings. Part of the team’s mission is trying to source as much of the building materials and furnishings from Vermont as possible (including harvesting timber from the Middlebury College grounds).  And according to Casey what really resonated with the Middlebury design team was not only the quality of work at Vermont Woods Studios but the sustainable production processes used by our workshops. The team chose our Cherry Moon Dovetail Platform Bed to be the centerpiece of the Master Bedroom and we couldn’t agree more with their choice.

 

 

The Middlebury team is now putting the finishing touches to the home and at some point will have to disassemble it and transport it down to the National Malls West Potomac Park in Washington DC. During the event, thousands of people will be guided through the 20 homes on display, and the houses will be judged on categories like energy use and home entertainment. And while no team really loses in this competition you know who we are rooting for!

Are you wondering what happens to these Solar Decathlon houses after the competition? Since the first event in 2002, 72 houses have competed in the Solar Decathlon. These houses are now located throughout the United States and around the world and continue to serve numerous education, conservation and community-oriented functions.

There is a wealth of information about this great event and its history at the US Department of Energy website. And if you are rooting for or would like to learn more about the Middlebury team they have put together a great site that chronicles their project and gives insight to the team and their mission.  Go Team Middlebury!

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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.

Rebuilding the Economy on a Green Foundation

Last updated on October 27th, 2019 at 10:24 am

As we start picking up the pieces of our broken economy and trying to sort through them, what kinds of changes will we make to avoid another meltdown?  We’ve unwittingly become such ravenous consumers, that we’ve gotten accustomed to forsaking quality in our purchases for instant gratification at the expense of frequent disposal and replacement.

We hear people say things like, “I like to freshen up my home and replace my furniture every few years to stay up with the trends.”  In the furniture business, we call those disposable purchases curbside furniture.

If you’re lucky enough to have antiques and heirlooms that have been handed down to you through the generations, I’ll bet that even after 50-100 or more years, you’ll find the quality of those items to be superior to that of today’s equivalent.

Rebuilding the economy on a green foundation is going to involve a cultural shift away from cheap, imported, transitory goods in favor of high-quality, long-lasting, timeless items that are crafted from sustainable resources and sold near the source with a minimum of transportation and fuel costs.  Green American furniture companies are leading the way toward this kind of a paradigm shift.  We have the sustainable resources, the talent, the facilities and the will to make it happen.  Visit the Sustainable Furniture Council to learn more.

Vermont Woods Studios.

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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.