5 Earth Friendly Companies You’ll Love

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At Vermont Woods Studios, we believe that businesses have a responsibility to make the world a better place–not only on Earth day, but everyday. We realize that the planet is precious, and that both businesses and consumers have the power to protect it. The five companies we are highlighting in this blog are ones we believe do their best to protect our planet, both socially and environmentally. From organic and eco-friendly materials, to trade cycles that benefit indigenous populations, we are happy to support the unique missions of these Earth friendly companies:

1. Boll & Branch: Boll & Branch describes their products as “linens with a mission.” Their 300-thread-count sheets & cable knit throws are made exclusively from Global Organic Textile Standard-certified organic cotton, and made in fair-trade farms and factories in India. They ensure that the factory conditions are safe, and workers are paid a living wage. Boll & Branch uses only low impact, fiber reactive dyes that do not contain any known toxins or heavy metals. Their linens are beautiful, luxurious, and most importantly, eco-friendly!

2. Yellow Leaf Hammocks: Every Yellow Leaf Hammock is 100% handwoven by “hill-tribe artisans” in rural northern Thailand. The opportunity to weave hammocks and earn a good living wage is transformative for the weavers and their families, many of whom previously worked in back breaking slash and burn agriculture. Instead of going to school, many children would end up working in the fields alongside their parents, stuck in a cycle of poverty. Yellow Leaf Hammocks empowers these people through job creation– giving them the tools they need to escape poverty and join the middle class.

3. Badger: Badger is a small, family-owned company nestled on the banks of the Ashuelot River in rural Gilsum, New Hampshire. They blend organic plant extracts, oils, butters and beeswax to make eco-friendly healing balms, lip balms, mineral sunscreens, and other personal care products. Everything they make is healthy, and promoting environmental responsibility is one of their core principals. Plus, they use only USDA Certified Organic ingredients in their products!

4. Deans Beans: Deans Beans encourages you to look in your kitchen and ask yourself, “where do your beans come from?” They believe in a progressive trade system where social and environmental consciousness plays an integral part in every step of the cycle (from production and distribution, from the farmer to the consumer). They believe in building a better future through business and hope that other coffee companies follow their lead. They only purchase their beans from small farm cooperatives, largely made up of indigenous people working hard to maintain their culture and lifestyle. Dean, the company’s founder, has a long history of activism for indigenous rights, and it’s one of the reasons he started the company in the first place.  They believe that the quality of their coffee includes the quality of respect for the environment and for their southern partners in the coffee world.

5. Seventh Generation: Seventh Generation is a Burlington, Vermont based maker of environmentally friendly laundry detergent, trash bags, and diapers. They took their name from an Iroquiois law that says, “in our every deliberation we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations.” To make good on that pledge, Seventh Generation sells a line of products that includes biodegradable, vegetable-based cleaning products, chlorine-free tampons and paper towels and natural lotion baby wipes. They even have an employee bonus program that awards workers who figure out ways to make their products even more sustainable!

We hope that these companies have inspired you to take a look around your home and think about the products you bring into it. Where are they coming from? Who makes them? What are the consequences? Who am I supporting? These are all important things to consider when buying consciously and ethically. We invite you to join us in promoting some of your own favorite Earth friendly companies! You can leave a link and what you love about them in the comments section, or write to us on Facebook or on Twitter.

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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.

Loft Bedroom Furniture: A Modern & Minimal Set

Last updated on August 15th, 2018 at 04:34 pm

Loft Bedroom Furniture Collection

Our  Loft bedroom furniture collection is proof that simple is beautiful. It’s clean, modern design utilizes simple and straight lines to highlight the natural beauty of the wood. The crisp right angles and straight lines make this bedroom set ideal for practically any contemporary bedroom style.

The centerpiece of the Loft Collection is the ultra minimalist bed. It has quite unique legs, which draws attention to it but in a way that doesnt distract from the rest of the room. It’s bold and beautiful but not in your face. The case pieces are expertly crafted and unassuming. They are versatile enough to transform as your aesthetic tastes change.

Why we love the Loft Bedroom Furniture Collection:

-The Minimalist bed reduces clutter in your bedroom.

-It’s unique geometric look stands out from traditional bedroom furniture

-It’s perfect for both husband and wife

-It’s extremely versatile

-It’s better for the environment

-It’s reasonably priced

-It’s guaranteed for life

-It’s made in Vermont and supports the local woodworking community

-It’s just plain beautiful

The Loft bedroom furniture collection is expertly crafted in Vermont using sustainably harvested solid wood. Each piece is custom crafted to ensure the highest standard of quality. An eco-friendly, hand applied oil finish tops off the artistry of this design. If you like it as much as we do, why not make it your own? Shop it online or give us a call at 888-390-5571/contact us with your questions.

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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.

What is a Vermont Furniture Store Doing in the Amazon Rainforest?

Last updated on May 14th, 2015 at 09:09 pm

This post is one in a series about Vermont Woods Studios’ mission of rainforest conservation and our support of Bolivian environmentalists dedicated to reforestation and ecotourism in the AmazonPart 1Part 2Part 3Part 4.

The Serere Reserve | Madidi | Bolivian Amazon Rainfdorest
The view of the Serere Reserve from Casa Grande, where we shared meals, plans and stories with the amazing people of Madidi Travel who are using eco tourism to fund conservation in the Bolivian Amazon.

The Rainforest & A Vermont Furniture Store

Where is the link?  Well, in the time it takes to read this series of blogs, an area of the Amazon rainforest larger than 200 football fields will have been destroyed.   Can you believe that?  Much rainforest destruction is done illegally, to feed the US markets for furniture and flooring.  Hmm… Vermont makes wood furniture.  With our 200 year tradition of  using local, sustainably harvested wood, we can provide an excellent alternative to illegal furniture imports.  At Vermont Woods Studios our mission is to raise awareness about the rainforest and persuade consumers to avoid illegal wood products (made from rare tropical woods like mahogany, teak and ipe) in favor of sustainable furniture and flooring made from North American woods (like cherry, maple, oak and walnut).

Massive tree in the Serere Reserve | Madidi | Bolivian Amazon
Riley is on the left, taking a break from his volunteer work to explore the rainforest with me and Severo, our knowledgeable (and entertaining) guide.

Finding A Way To Help

At VWS we’ve supported rainforest conservation since Day 1.  But quite honestly, donating our profits to reforestation NGOs (impressive and legitimate, as they are) operating 5000 miles away was not very satisfying.  We wanted to be more closely involved.  We wanted to see (and be a part of) the progress being made through our contributions.

My last post was about how my son Riley happened to end up volunteering for the legendary conservationist, Rosamaria Ruiz, of Madidi Travel in the Serere Reserve of the Bolivian Amazon Rainforest.  Perfect!  Kendall (my other son) and I went down to see Riley and offer to help Ms Ruiz with her efforts in reforestation and “conservation through eco tourism”.

Yellow Monkeys | Amazon Rainforest | Serere Reserve | Bolivia | Madidi
This troop of Yellow Monkeys crashed through the rainforest right in front of the Casa Grande where we were eating lunch. They seemed as curious and unafraid of us as we were of them.

Many Faces of Rainforest Destruction

After flying over huge expanses of the Amazon and trekking through the Serere Reserve, I realized there are many different rainforest destruction problems and approaches to solving them.  Some areas have simply been clear cut, the worst possible fate.  But “luckily” the Serere Reserve was ravaged by illegal loggers who were just interested in large, high value trees. For example, I did not see a single mahogany tree other than the saplings planted by Madidi Travel.  Cedar was also completely wiped out.  The good news is that, otherwise the Serere Reserve is still intact, extraordinarily beautiful & teaming with wildlife.

Ecotourism | Hanging with Monkeys & Tapirs in the Amazon Rainforest
The little spider monkey next to me is having a word with that 200 pound tapir nosing up to him.  The two are rescues who’ve taken sanctuary at Madidi Travel’s Serere Rainforest Reserve.  In many cases, rescued animals have lost their parents, flocks, herds or other companions to illegal loggers who shoot them for food or sell them as curiosities.

It’s an amazing place, filled with exotic birds, monkeys (we saw troops of howlers, yellow monkeys, spider monkeys, capuchins and a nocturnal monkey all in one day) fish and other wildlife.  Serere is one of the most bio-diverse places on the planet– it’s a nature lover’s dream.  Rosamaria says that wildlife is so abundant here because the animals feel safe.

Massive Rainforest Tree | Madidi | Serere
Although illegal loggers cleaned out the huge, high value trees from Madidi Travel’s Serere Reserve, there are still plenty of massive 200 and 300+ year old trees that will amaze you.

Conservation Through Eco Tourism

Last week I learned there’s more to rainforest conservation than planting trees.  In places where the rainforest is still standing, the goal is to protect what’s left and restore what’s been stolen.  Illegal loggers are a constant threat so rigorous patrolling and enforcement are always required.  That takes money.  Rosamaria Ruiz is showing rainforest communities around the world how to raise that money through eco tourism.  Devoted wildlife and nature lovers pay to experience the wonder of the rainforest, thus providing jobs for indigenous people to conserve and defend it.

If you love being up close and personal with nature, check out Madidi Travel and their eco tourism opportunities at the Serere Reserve.  It’s the last little corner of the Garden of Eden.  Get down there soon. The rainforest continues to disappear at an alarming rate.  The clock is ticking.

Amazon Rainforest Trip
On my way to the Bolivian Amazon,  I’m holding the National Geographic article I read 15 years ago, about Rosamaria Ruiz and her rainforest conservation work in Madidi National Park.  It influenced me to create Vermont Woods Studios.  On the right, I’m in the Amazon, helping Ms Ruiz’s team members who are re-planting mahogany trees.  It was a good feeling!

 

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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.

5 Ways to Know if you can Trust an Online Furniture Company

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We just received the furniture today and are over the moon. We were so nervous about ordering online sight unseen but the dresser and nightstands are beautiful. Many thanks and please thanks the craftsman as well.” -V. Defrancis  

If you are feeling unsure about ordering furniture sight unseen, you aren’t the only one. Many of our customers take major leaps of faith when shopping for furniture online, and we’re always happy to see these nervous customers satisfied in the end. We get countless emails from our customers expressing gratitude for a quality product and great service, and we are proud to be a company people can really trust. We know that purchasing quality furniture is an investment, and we want our customers to feel confident that their investment is a wise one. If you are shopping around between different furniture companies, all offering furniture sight unseen, there are several things you should look for to make sure you can really trust the product and the company behind it.

5 Ways to Know if you can Trust an Online Furniture Company:

1. Ability to visit and see the quality of the furniture in person. Even if you can’t to go to the showroom and see the furniture yourself for distance reasons, having a showroom is a sign of confidence that the quality of furniture is most likely consistent with what the company promises online.

2. Transparency about the people behind the company. Can you meet the people who work there–from the owners to the customer service members? Can you atleast read and learn about them on the company website? Learning about the people who work at the company is a great way to get to know the company you are working with. If a company doesn’t tell you about who they are, how can you be sure they are people you can trust? You want to know that real people are there to handle your order and guide you through the process.

3. Quality testimonials. Check the website for a testimonials page, this should give you an accurate picture of the quality of their service and their product. Sites like sitejabber are a good resource as well.

4. Accessibility. Does the company offer you many different ways to reach and interact with their customer service team? Is it easy to contact them if a problem were to arise? Are they quick to respond? A trustworthy company won’t make it hard for you to reach them by phone, live chat, email, or in person.

5.  Lifetime guarantee. A company that is worthy of your trust is one that will stand by their product 100%. A lifetime guarantee should give you the confidence that what you are buying is top quality and crafted with care.

What else do you look for when shopping online for furniture sight unseen? Let us know in the comments!

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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.

New for Summer: Harbour Deep Seating Outdoor Furniture

Last updated on February 18th, 2019 at 12:44 pm

Finally, a deep seating outdoor furniture collection that is as lush and comfortable as it is stylish. 

polywood-harbour-cat-1The Harbour Collection by POLYWOOD is the perfect furniture to create your summery outdoor retreat. Imagine spending long afternoons relaxing by the pool with a good book and a fruity drink, or warm summer nights enjoying lively conversation with your closest friends and family…sounds wonderful, doesn’t it? No matter the occasion, the Harbour Collection will inspire feelings of ultimate luxury and relaxation all summer long.

Less Maintenance, More Relaxation

American Made Deep Seating Outdoor FurnitureWhy waste precious time trying to maintain flimsy & faded outdoor furniture? With the Harbour Collection, there is hardly any maintenance, leaving you more time to relax and enjoy the sun! This low-maintenance deep seating outdoor furniture collection is constructed using high quality POLYWOOD recycled plastic lumber combined with premium stainless steel hardware ensuring extreme durability all year round.  Each chair, settee, sofa and ottoman is made complete with newly designed Sunbrella waterproof fabric cushions, specifically designed for the highest quality of comfort. The fabrics are durable and weather resistant, giving you four seasons of enjoyment. Available in Black with Granite cushions, Slate Grey with Natural cushions, Teak with Antique cushions, or White with Air Blue, each style is sophisticated and modern.

Shop Now & Avoid Being Left with an Empty Patio!

American Made Outdoor FurnitureSure, it’s only April now but before you know it you are going to wake up one morning and realize that A) It’s the middle of July and B) your patio is completely empty. How will you entertain your friends? Where will you relax? Our advice is to start shopping now, or at least start planning for the perfect patio. You deserve an oasis of fun and relaxation, and our Harbour deep seating outdoor furniture collection will give you just that.

What do you think of the Harbour Collection? Would you use it to beautify your space? If you love it, shop it now!

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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.

Craftsman Furniture: An Investment You Can Appreciate

Last updated on October 4th, 2022 at 10:12 am

Modern Craftsman furniture, handmade in Vermont. Quality USA made!
Vermont is America’s last great bastion of consummate craftsmanship. The Green Mountain state boasts over 2000 small furniture making companies. They’re keeping the spirit of American craft alive! Commission Vermont made furniture from one of the masters in The Guild and you’ll enjoy your investment everyday as it’s value appreciates over time.

New flash: the stock market’s volatile and the price of gold just took another tumble.  Here’s an idea… invest a portion of your money in something you can literally appreciate every day:  handmade Craftsman Furniture!  I was looking on the Stickley Museum website this morning and noticed that a “Columbus Ave Sideboard” by Gustav Stickley, which he crafted in 1900 for his own home was sold by Stickley’s heirs to Barbara Streisand in 1988 for $363,000. Eleven years later, Barbara re-sold the sideboard to an un-named buyer at a Christie’s auction for $596,500.  $233,500 in appreciation just over 10 years– that’s not a bad rate of appreciation is it?

Bedroom furniture: Craftsman and Shaker style. Made in Vermont, USA
It’s not Gustav Stickley and it’s not going to sell for half a million dollars at Christies.  But it is high quality, solid cherry wood furniture, made in the USA by Vermont craftsmen and women.  And it’s guaranteed for a lifetime of service.

The Stickley museum website highlights other antique arts & crafts, mission and craftsman furniture pieces that have shown tremendous appreciation in value, including:

Now… original antique furniture is not for everyone.  Most of us would probably prefer to have beautiful, high quality furniture that we’re not afraid to use.  Which brings me to Vermont.  It is America’s last great bastion of consummate craftsmanship.  The Green Mountain state boasts over 2000 small furniture making companies.  Several of the best are members of an elite association of master level furniture makers, The Guild of Vermont Furniture Makers.  Tomorrow’s antiques can be commissioned from Guild members today, with a good bit of certainty that their value will increase over time.  Check out The Guild’s website and visit one of their shows or tour their workshops for an up close and personal view of truly fine craftsmanship.

Mission Style Buffet Sideboard
This Vermont made Mission style buffet & sideboard, is handcrafted of real solid cherry wood and guaranteed to last a lifetime.

We have a selection of craftsman furniture for sale at Stonehurst, our furniture and home decor showroom and we can also help you map out a tour of Guild members studios, focusing on those best suited to the type of furniture you’re looking for.

When you invest your money in tomorrow’s Vermont made antiques, you are also investing in American jobs and in the future of American craft.  What other kind of investment could give you this kind of appreciation?

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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.

5 Simple Things That Will Make Your Bedroom Feel New Again

Accessory Furniture Pieces
Make your room feel new again, by adding one or all of these great accessories!

 

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!

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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.

Cherry Shaker Furniture: A New England Classic

Last updated on August 15th, 2018 at 04:34 pm

cherry shaker furniture

Cherry Shaker Furniture is a Staple of the Traditional New England Home

In any traditionally inspired New England home you are sure to find handcrafted Cherry wood furniture. Shaker furniture in particular has been a favorite style for decades, and there’s no end to this trend in sight. The elegant look of Cherry wood combined with the simplicity of Shaker furniture creates a truly timeless match.  Cherry Shaker furniture is versatile, elegant, and the perfect addition to any traditional home. No matter where you live, this furniture style will give your space the feeling of a classic New England home.

Cherry Shaker Furniture for the living roomCherry Shaker furniture will work with any color scheme, and as seen in the photo above, looks marvelous with shades of green. No matter the color of your room, Shaker furniture in Cherry wood will help you create a look that is comfortable yet polished. Built for function but never lacking in chic Shaker style.

Cherry Shaker Bedroom FurnitureYour master bedroom will look charming and New England inspired with our finely crafted Cherry Shaker furniture. Unadorned and subtle, you could live in the city and still feel like you are waking up in a rural Vermont farmhouse.

reclaimed-barnwood-table-country-windsor-lifeShare meals with your closest friends and family around Vermont crafted Shaker tables and chairs that are inspired by a 200+ year heritage of Yankee woodworking. Cherry Shaker furniture is durable and makes the perfect base for your traditionally inspired dining space.

What do you think of Cherry Shaker furniture? Would you add it to your home? Let us know in the comments section!

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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.

5 Outdoor Furniture Ideas For Designing Your Patio

Mod Outdoor Furniture

Your porch or patio is a great place to entertain guests, dine, and relax with your friends and family.  Even a simple backyard can be transformed into a beautiful secondary living space when designed well! Simple upgrades in your outdoor furniture, lighting, and decor can turn your space from plain to inspiring in no time!

Here are some great outdoor furniture ideas to help you plan your space:

1. Think about what you use your space for, or what you want to use your space for the most in the future. Do you want it to be a relaxing place for your family? A place to entertain friends and host parties? A nice spot to spend time alone and read? Think about what you envision the space being. This will dictate the decisions you make about your outdoor furniture & decor.

2. Draw out your space. Measuring your space is imperative in buying outdoor furniture because you need to know the exact amount of space you have available before you start buying. Go out to your space and analyze what the typical traffic patterns will be. Do you need a lot of room for people to walk around? Take notes on highly trafficked areas you’d like to keep clear.

3. Browse Pinterest & other inspiration sites for all of the elements you’d like to see on your patio space. Think about food– do you need a grill, decorative wood serving bowls, or dining tables & chairs? How about your lighting–candles are always a great option for a romantic and dreamy outdoor space. Hanging string lights are festive and bring life into the space. Get a piece of paper, browse Pinterest & take note of all of the different things you love about porch and patio decor.

4. Consider the climate. Will your outdoor furniture & decor need to be weather resistant? If your patio furniture will be exposed to harsh heat, cold, winds, rain, etc… you might want to consider products that are maintenance free and can survive throughout even the most severe weather conditions! Do a little browsing online and you’ll find great outdoor rugs to keep the floor looking stylish and resistant to the weather too! If your furniture, rugs, etc, will be exposed to rain and wetness, don’t use any fabrics that will mold or decay over time!

Euro Modern Outdoor Furniture

5. Colors. Choose color schemes that bring out the personality of your space and your home! We love the bright blue of this ultra modern outdoor furniture set–accented by the blue water of the pool. Think about your space and the feeling you want your porch or patio to give your guests, and find colorful furniture and decor to match it! Browse Pinterest for inspiration.

Stay tuned for more updates on the perfect outdoor furniture style for you & your space!

 

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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 Meets the Rainforest

Last updated on May 14th, 2015 at 09:11 pm

Rainforest Conservation | Sustainable Furniture and Flooring

This post is one in a series about Vermont Woods Studios’ mission of rainforest conservation and our support of Bolivian environmentalists dedicated to reforestation and ecotourism in the AmazonPart 1Part 2Part 3Part 4.

The Vermont Furniture – Rainforest Connection

Last post, I shared the mission behind our sustainable furniture company.  It’s rainforest conservation and here are a few reasons why that’s important to me:

  • Although the earth’s rainforests cover less than 2% of it’s total surface area, they are home to 50 % of the Earth’s plants and animals
  • We are losing the rainforest at a rate of 1 acre every second!
  • About 100 rainforest species are going extinct every day
  • What nature has crafted over hundreds of millions of years is being destroyed with no thought as to the consequences
  • Much rainforest destruction is a result of clear cutting huge areas of land by organized crime
  • The timber is used to supply cheap furniture and flooring to companies like IKEA and Lumber Liquidators
  • The Amazon is the world’s largest rainforest, storing 1/5 of the world’s fresh water and producing 20% of the planet’s oxygen

Vermont Woods Studios is my attempt to raise awareness about the plight of the rainforest and to offer sustainable, Vermont made furniture as an alternative to illegal imports.  At VWS we share our passion with customers and support non-profits dedicated to rainforest conservation.  We also plant a tree for every furniture order we take (through the Nature Conservancy’s Plant a Billion Trees project).

Sustainable, Vermont made furniture as an alternative to illegal imports
Vermont Woods Studios is my attempt to raise awareness about the plight of the rainforest and to offer sustainable, Vermont made furniture (like this Cherry Moon dining table) as an alternative to illegal imports. We plant a tree for every furniture order we take work.

The Amazon is Disappearing:  How Can We Help?

I’ve always wanted to visit the Amazon rainforest to understand what’s happening there and find a way for Vermont Woods Studios to help.  But it’s a big place.  At 2.72 million square miles, the Amazon Basin is roughly the size of the United States (minus Alaska).  So where to start?

Serendipity Happens

A strange coincidence happened.  Riley (my son) took some time off from college this year to backpack through South America.  He called recently to say he’d be doing rainforest conservation work for a woman named Rosamaria Ruiz in the Bolivian Amazon.  For some reason that name rang a bell.  I pulled up Google and sure enough, Rosamaria is someone I read about in National Geographic 15 years ago (the article was written by Steve Kemper).  Ruiz is an award-winning environmental activist who led a National Geographic team through parts of the Bolivian Amazon and brought about the creation of a protected national park called Madidi.  Something else she had a hand in creating:  Vermont Woods Studios!  Her story and others like it planted the seed for our sustainable furniture company.

 

madidi-travel
Madidi Travel and founder, Rosamaria Ruiz safeguard a protected area in the Bolivian Amazon with the greatest biodiversity in the world: the Madidi National Park. Riley is currently volunteering there and Kendall and I will join him next week. 

 

Into The Amazon

So next week, Kendall (my other son) and I will be heading down to the Serere Reserve, an area of the Amazon rainforest conserved through the efforts of Rosamaria Ruiz.  We’ll meet up with Riley where he’s volunteering in the Madidi National Park*.  And we’ll ask Rosamaria and her team at Madidi-Travel what we can do at Vermont Woods Studios to support their efforts.  I’ll keep you posted.  If you’re interested to know more, check out these websites:

* Fun Fact:  The continental United States and Canada are home to about 700 species of birds.  Madidi National Park (with 1/10 of 1% as much area) contains an estimated 1,000 bird species

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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.