Nestled in Vermont's Northeast Kingdom, Lyndon Furniture is the result of David Allard's vision to combine traditional American craftsmanship with his abiding love and respect for nature.
When he first started building custom cabinets and furniture, David Allard had just graduated from high school. He worked out of an unfinished fieldstone house, which he was building for his parents. As his business grew, David built a workshop of his own, felling trees and dragging logs from the family farm down to the local sawmill. Thirty years later, that workshop is Lyndon Furniture, a 140,000-square-foot woodworking facility that employs 80 craftspeople. As his business has grown, David remains committed to and inspired by the small town of Lyndon and the natural beauty surrounding it. "When you live this close to heaven," he says, "why would you want to live anywhere else?"
David is committed to employing and developing the skills of local craftspeople. "It feels good to have a part in building a place where people have an opportunity to go as far as they want in their vocation," he says. The pride he takes in his company's craftsmanship is inextricably linked to his deep respect for wood as a resource. Lyndon Furniture only uses lumber responsibly harvested from within 500 miles of the workshop, and some of it even comes from trees on Allard's own property. To him, wood is more than a product that's bought and sold—it's a beautiful material that was once a living thing. "I think about every tree that is cut down, and the power and privilege we have to extend its life and to display its beauty in the furniture we make," says David.
Sustainability is a vital part of his business. "It's just common sense," David says. This philosophy guides every step of Lyndon Furniture's production process—from sourcing the wood and building the furniture, to finishing each piece and reducing waste. Trees used for lumber are harvested in a process called Single Tree Selection. Trained foresters carefully choose individual trees to harvest and leave the rest of the forest intact to create openings in the forest canopy so precipitation, sunlight and nutrients can reach the forest floor.
Lyndon Furniture uses finishes and stains that are made locally in Vermont, a state that has some of the strictest environmental laws in the country. Consequently, Lyndon's furniture is finished with extremely low levels of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) and Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs). At end of the production cycle, every scrap of wood is used somehow, from fuel to animal bedding at local farms.