Lets Talk Apples!

Last updated on August 15th, 2018 at 02:56 pm

Apples in Wooden Bowl at Vermont Woods Studios Showroom
Ok…ok, so we love Pears too!

 

There’s been a lot of buzz from Vermonters about apples lately. Probably because A) they’re delicious B) they’re perfect for fall and C) they have a long history in the state of Vermont! Well, we love these sweet natural treats just as much as any other Vermonter–so, lets talk apples!

Did you know that…

  • The first Macs grew in Canada. The first McIntosh apple tree sprouted from one of several seedlings that were discovered in 1811 by John McIntosh on his farm in Ontario!
  • In 1868, Dr. T.A Hoskins brought the McIntosh to Newport, Vermont right from Ontario. A descendant of John McIntosh, William McIntosh, planted these apples in his West Berlin, Vermont orchard in 1870…and the first printed reference to a mac apple appeared in 1876. 
  • In 1920, the “big four” Vermont apple varieties were McIntosh, Fameuse, Northern Spy, and Wealthy.
  • In the 1980s, Vermont had an average of 79 growers on 3,500 bearing acres in total, and produced an average annual crop of 1.25 million bushels of apples. 
  • In England, to destroy an apple orchard was seen as almost sacrilegious, and it was said that if an orchard was destroyed to make way for another crop, the crop would never prosper.
  • An old Samhain charm was for all the district’s unmarried young people to tie an apple onto a piece of string and whirl it around before a fire. The one whose apple fell off first was said to be the first to marry
  • McIntosh, Vermont’s “bread & butter variety,” remains  within the top six apple varieties desired by consumers.
  • The 2007 census reported 264 farms growing apples on 3,241 acres of land in Vermont, and the 2011 survey found those same results! 

    If you loved these apple facts as much as we do, take a minute to check out Vermont Apples, a website with tons of information and history about apples, including more facts, orchard listings, and apple news! And for brilliant, tasty apple recipes… take a look at The Apple Lover’s Cookbook, a 300+ page  book containing 100 magnificent apple recipes!

 And let us know what your favorite apple recipes are & your favorite places around New England to apple pick in the comments section or on 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.

Gov. Shumlin: Top 10 Reasons to Attend Our Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

Last updated on August 14th, 2018 at 12:19 pm

Stonehurst | Vermont's Newest Fine Furniture Showroom and Art Gallery
Stonehurst, Vermont’s newest fine furniture showroom and art gallery is open and ready for business. All we need now is for Governor Shumlin to come down to Vernon and cut the ribbon on Tuesday October 22 at 3pm.

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:

  1. Marvel at the world class handwork of dozens of Vermont’s fine furniture makers
  2. Learn how a small Vermont business transitioned from a spare bedroom to a scenic destination shopping experience in the last 3 years
  3. See how Vermonters are marrying the best of old world craftsmanship with cutting edge communications technology to make Vermont the Fine Furniture Capital of America
  4. Visit Pine Top, a former Vermont ski area that not only showcases fine wooden furniture but also provides 100 acres of forested backdrop where customers experience the value of working lands and sustainable forest management
  5. Enjoy original artwork of talented Vermont artists like Susan Osgood, Linda Marcille and Janet Picard
  6. Check up on how we’re investing the $100,000 grant monies we were awarded by the Vermont Working Lands Initiative
  7. Experience the beautiful landscaping artistry of celebrated author/gardener/landscaper Gordon Hayward and Torben Larsen of Putney, VT
  8. See the positive signs of growth in Vernon and connect with a community that’s struggling to plan a new course for the future
  9. Witness the synergy and collaboration among Vermont’s fine furniture professionals that’s bringing our work out of the woods (so to speak) and into the homes of customers in all 50 states and several countries abroad
  10. Visit a local, green renovation project in action where great care was taken to restore a c 1790 farmhouse using Vermont made materials (local maple flooring, Vermont slate hearths, Green Mountain Windows, Vermont castings stoves and more)

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.

Enjoy the view at Stonehurst, Vermont's newest fine furniture showroom
Sit down, relax and enjoy the view. We’ll provide the wine.

 

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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.

Wood Furniture Care: Tips on Climate Control

Last updated on February 17th, 2021 at 05:14 pm

Solid Wood Furniture: Tips on Climate Control and Humidity
We received this beautiful picture of our Cherry Blossom Single Pedestal Table from Mary M in Palm Desert, CA.  I love how she blended a relatively modern cherry dining set with what looks like a 16th century Baroque painting, a Colonial American corner cabinet and a collection of vibrant patchwork quilts.  But it was her combination of different woods that reminded me to talk about wood movement today.

Mary’s M’s cherry dining furniture (shown above) was made in Vermont (a relatively humid place, especially in the summer) and shipped to the desert of Arizona. Since we ship a lot of Vermont made wood furniture to desert locales in California, Texas, Arizona, Nevada and elsewhere, I thought I’d post a few tips on humidity and climate control.

Wood Furniture Moves in Response to Changes in Humidity

When wood is part of a living tree, water moves up the trunk, from the ground and through the pores and fibers of the wood, as it travels out to the leaves.  After a tree is cut and sawn into lumber, water continues to move back and forth through the wood fibers until the wood’s moisture level reaches equilibrium with its environment.

The job of woodworkers is to design and build furniture with a thorough understanding of the characteristics of wood movement.  But in spite of their advanced knowledge and skills, no woodworker is able to create wood furniture that is completely unresponsive to temperature and humidity in your home.  So here are a few climate control tips from our Furniture Care section to ensure that your wood furniture will remain beautiful and structurally sound for generations of enjoyment.

Climate Control Tips

  • Keep your home around 70°F-72°F with a relative humidity of about 50-55%
  • This often requires a humidifier in winter and an air conditioner in summer
  • Place your furniture away from heat sources such as radiators, heat runs or fireplaces
  • Store table leaves as close as possible to the table so they adjust to the same humidity conditions
  • Use a dehumidifier during wet, rainy times and in damp rooms to remove excess moisture from the air
  • For wood furniture with an oil finish, re-oil it frequently to create and maintain a patina.  A rule of thumb is to oil your furniture:
    • Immediately upon receipt
    • Once/week during the first month
    • Once/month during the first year
    • Once or twice/year after that

Normally if you’re comfortable with the temperature and humidity in your home, your wood furniture will be comfortable as well.  It’s designed to be durable and to accommodate normal changes in climate so most homeowners need not worry.   Relax and enjoy it.  Given reasonably good care your wood furniture will last for generations.

Tips from Furniture Restoration Experts

Check out this furniture renovation article from our friends over at Porch.com. You’ll learn even more tricks and techniques to make you an expert in wood furniture care.

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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.

Fall Asleep in Style

Last updated on March 13th, 2019 at 05:44 pm

Copeland Monterey Bedroom Furniture | Arts and Crafts Meets Asian Style
The Copeland Monterey bedroom furniture collection fuses Arts and Crafts design elements with Asian style.

Copeland Monterey Collection. Carefully Crafted, Elegantly Styled.

After a stressful day at the office who doesn’t want to come home and melt into a comfortable cradle, drifting off to sleep in style?

Copeland’s high end Monterey Bedroom Furniture Collection updates traditional Arts & Crafts style with a modern Japanese touch. The headboard is reminiscent of a Shinto shrine’s torii gate, an icon that represents the transition from the “profane to the sacred“. Such an appropriate analogy for the transition from your day of hard work into a night of peaceful slumber!

Handcrafted in real cherry hardwood, the Monterey Bedroom set is made to order and can be customized online in your choice of natural cherry, windsor cherry, autumn cherry, congnac cherry, saddle cherry and smoke cherry wood stain. The platform bed can also be customized with an upholstered headboard in your choice of 5 different microsuedes and 3 leathers.

Storage Bed

Copeland also offers a Monterey platform storage bed which features four 8″ deep, under-bed storage drawers that provide plenty of stylish storage– now essential for small apartments. Nightstands are designed to allow easy access to the storage drawers– it’s great furniture for small spaces.

Craftsmanship and Construction Details

Learn more about the craftsmanship involved in building the Monterey bedroom collection in our construction details 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.

Stonehurst, Showroom Updates!

Last updated on September 16th, 2013 at 09:12 am

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.

Visit Vermont Woods Studios Fine Furniture Studio Stonehurst
Some updates on two recent renovations. Both are still a work in progress!
Vermont Woods Studios Fine Furniture Showroom
The deck in progress!

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!

Vermont Woods Studios Fine Furniture

Vermont Woods Studios Showroom
A peek inside part of the showroom!
Stonehurst Vermont Fine Furniture Showroom
Loving the flower arrangement!

Well, there’s a tiny peek at what the showroom looks like. We’ll save the rest for your first visit! 🙂 See you soon!

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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 Southern Vermont Towns You’ve Got to Visit

Last updated on January 16th, 2019 at 05:35 pm

There is so much to love about Southern Vermont. Especially the way that the towns are surrounded by mountains and rich expanses of trees, making them even more beautiful  in that brief autumn period where the leaves are multicolored and bright. These 5 southern Vermont towns are each unique, and vary in size and culture. But all of them are rich in artistry, with diverse communities of independent artists, performance arts, and theater.

These 5 communities thrive with quaint downtown areas, promising lots of food and plenty of shopping! Antique stores, one of a kind book stores, eccentric decor shops, galleries, and much more are what make these towns so special and true to Vermont.

All of these towns are less than an hour away from us at Stonehurst, and we’d encourage you to visit them to see all of the wonderful things they have to offer!

 

1. Brattleboro

Brattleboro, VT Photography
A Rainbow over Brattleboro, Vermont. Photo by Professor Bop via Flickr

 

2.  Bellows Falls

Bob Taylor Photography
‘Bellows Falls Street Scene’ Photo by Bob Taylor, via Flickr.

3.  Wilmington

Wilmington Vermont Photography
Wilmington, Vermont. Photo by Kimberly Vardeman via Flickr

4. Bennington

Bennington, Vermont
Bennington Battle Monument, Photo by Jim Guerard via Flickr

 

5. Chester

Chester, Vermont
Chester, Vermont. Photo by Lee Bennett via Flickr

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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.

Nina Markiw and Dennis Getting Snappy at Stonehurst

Last updated on May 4th, 2018 at 03:21 pm

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.

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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.

Forest to Furniture: Local Wood = Local Good

Last updated on March 13th, 2019 at 05:40 pm

Our friend Kathleen Wanner of the Vermont Wood Manufacturer’s Association VWMA is fond of the saying, “local wood = local good”.  It captures Vermont’s passion for supporting small, local businesses that emphasize sustainable use of the working landscape: our forests and fields.

Consider for a minute, your impact on local economies when you buy American made furniture versus imported furniture (most furniture in America is imported from Asia).  If, for example you buy Vermont made wood furniture,  you are supporting the local land owner who grew the trees, the forester who manages the land for sustainability, the logger who falls the trees, the sawyer who slices and dices the wood, perhaps a wholesaler (and/or retailer) who inventory the wood, the furniture maker who builds your furniture and (unless you buy directly from the furniture maker) the retail store that sells you the new bedroom set.  That’s why we say “local wood = local good”.

Here’s a typical Forest to Furniture scenario that happens routinely all over Vermont:

A local logging company or tree service harvests the trees.

Chuck Mayotte from Mayotte’s tree service in Guilford looks to find the highest and best use for the trees he removes.  Sometimes trees will be used for firewood, but when Chuck comes across high quality logs or those with special character, he sells them to area furniture makers.

Local sawyers cut the lumber into planks or beams.

Vince Johnson is a local sawyer in Vernon with a portable sawmill that he drives to the woodlot at harvest time.  He sawed black locust and norway spruce logs for us at Stonehurst, our new fine furniture gallery.  They are currently being used to build a deck behind our showroom.

Kerber Mills is another local sawyer with a small mill in Guilford, VT.  Clint Kerber milled the cherry and maple wood for our hardwood floors at the Stonehurst showroom.

Local furniture makers transform the wood into fine furniture.

Check out some of the specialty Forest to Furniture products that have been made by members the prestigious Guild of Vermont Furniture Makers including Richard Bissell of Putney Vermont and David Hurwitz of Randolf, VT.

So… what do you think?  Does the story (and the benefit to local economies) behind local wood furniture add enough value to sway your buying decision?  Or is imported furniture just too darned affordable to pass up? Let us know your thoughts on 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.

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.

Hardscaping Stonehurst with Torben Larsen

Last updated on August 29th, 2013 at 01:14 pm

Torben Larsen | Hardscaping | Southern Vermont
One of the many beautiful stone walls at Guilford Sound, in neighboring Guilford, VT.   Torben Larsen, of Windham Growers has been doing amazing stone work there for the past 7 years.  We are fortunate to be able to capture some of his talents at Stonehurst this month where he’ll be creating stone pathways and landscaping.

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.

Guilford Sound | Stonework, Landscaping and Hardscaping by Torben Larsen
Sights and sounds from the recording studio campus at Guilford Sound.  Clockwise from upper left:  a slate sphere made from recycled roof tiles by Torben Larsen of Windham Growers, the Recording Studio, an outdoor dining area and amphitheater and Torben Larsen and Gorden Hayward discussing landscape and hardscape plans for Vermont Woods Studios.

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.

 

 

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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.