An old 1930s home gets a modern makeover into a cozy beach cabin

May 23, 2018 by  
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Seattle-based architecture firm Olson Kundig is no stranger to cabin design, having completed many beautiful retreats across the Pacific Northwest. So, when Alan Maskin, principal and owner of Olson Kundig, decided to a renovate and expand an original 1938 beach cabin on Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, the results were nothing short of spectacular. In keeping with Maskin’s love for “the various uses of history,” the Agate Pass Cabin deftly combines the spirit of the 1930s with a modern refresh. Located on the shore overlooking Agate Pass, the Agate Pass Cabin came about when Maskin began searching for a home located between his “work life and love life,” formerly separated by a three-hour commute. It was then that he found a rundown 1930s cabin that won him over with its nice proportions, stained wood interiors and potential. The original structure was only one-story with low ceilings and an attic. Maskin expanded the property to 1,100 square feet and added a second story fronted with floor-to-ceiling glass windows that frame views of the water and Agate Pass. The second floor also opens up to a small terrace built atop the original screened-in porch, which was converted into a dining room and office. The existing interior was clad in wide planks of Douglas Fir  — a plentiful and popular material choice in the area 100 years ago. Whenever those panels were removed or altered, Maskin repurposed them into everything from cabinetry to ceilings. Related: This Puget Sound eco cabin is made almost entirely from reclaimed materials “Throughout the design, Maskin worked to make the different construction periods legible,” Olson Kundig said. “Modern additions are demarcated with different wood types from the original planks, making it clear to see what was ‘then’ and what is ‘now.’” To develop a spacious feel, Maskin removed the attic and the living room’s low ceiling to create a cathedral ceiling that soars to 17 feet tall at the gable. The design team added new foundations and made seismic upgrades. Maskin also designed most of the built-in furniture and cabinets, much of it made with glulam plywood . + Olson Kundig Images by Aaron Leitz and Kevin Scott/Olson Kundig

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An old 1930s home gets a modern makeover into a cozy beach cabin

BIG designs a high-end tiny house that goes off-grid

May 18, 2018 by  
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Bjarke Ingels Group has revealed images for the firm’s first-ever tiny house—the A45—designed for the prefab-housing startup Klein . Inspired by the traditional A-frame cabin, the A45 takes on an angular form conducive to rain run-off and easy construction. The 180-square-foot timber cabin boasts a completely customizable interior design and can be built within four to six months in any location. Constructed in Upstate New York, the prototype for the A45 tiny house is clad in blackened pine with a triangular glazed end wall to immerse homeowners in nature even when they’re indoors. The triangular floor-to-ceiling window—made up of seven glass pieces—and the soaring 13-foot-tall ceiling help create a sense of spaciousness despite the structure’s small 180-square-foot size. The cabin is slightly elevated on four concrete piers in order to minimize site impact and to give homeowners the freedom to place the tiny home in areas without heavy machinery. “The resulting crystal-like shape gives A45 an ever-changing appearance,” said BIG in a statement about their modification of the traditional A-frame cabin. “Upon entering, the 180 [square-foot] interior space reflects a minimal Nordic abode prioritized for ‘hyggelig’ comfort and design.” The subtle natural material palette, from the exposed timber frame built of solid pine to the Douglas Fir floor planks and the space-grade insulating natural cork walls, further emphasizes the Scandinavian aesthetic. Cedar clads the compact bathroom, and the fixtures were sourced from VOLA. Related: This tiny timber cabin was built from construction waste for under $30K The A45 tiny house comprises 100% recyclable materials including the timber frame, wall modules, and subfloor. The home get all of its power from  solar panels, and the service equipment is hidden from view in the back. The cozy interior is furnished with a Morsøe wood-burning stove and handcrafted Nordic furniture including pieces by Carl Hansen and a bed fitted with Soren Rose Studio’s Kvadrat fabrics. Københavns Møbelsnedkeri designed the petite kitchen. + Bjarke Ingels Group + Klein Via AD Images via BIG

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BIG designs a high-end tiny house that goes off-grid

This tiny cabin on the Greece-Turkey border generates 100% of its own energy

May 14, 2018 by  
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Istanbul-based studio SO? Architecture & Ideas has completed a tiny off-grid cabin perfect for reconnecting with the outdoors. Located in a village on the Turkish-Greek border, the Cabin on the Border is a prefabricated and transportable unit constructed of laminated wood and polycarbonate. As a modern take on the traditional cabin vernacular, this tiny, sustainably minded structure is equipped with solar panels and a rainwater catchment system as well as an adaptable interior design. Designed to capture the “back-to-nature” aesthetic, the 194-square-foot Cabin on the Border is set in a field of mustard greens and raised off the ground to minimize site impact . “We tried to envision the nature not only as a picturesque background but also as a protagonist of the scenes we will create,” said the architects, who cited the challenges of living with Mother Nature – including mosquitos and storms. To mitigate the ever-changing weather, the architects designed the off-grid cabin with operable facades that can adapt to different climate conditions. Related: This prefab movable house can be assembled anywhere A drawbridge-style door at one end of the cabin tilts outwards to form a patio, while the polycarbonate window can pivot upwards to form a glazed canopy, effectively opening up the living area to the outdoors. The plywood-lined interior includes three sleeping spaces—one next to the drawbridge-styled opening and the others tucked above—as well as a bathroom and open-plan kitchen, dining area, and living space. Solar panels cover the roof of the off-grid unit. + SO? Architecture & Ideas Images via SO? Architecture & Ideas

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This tiny cabin on the Greece-Turkey border generates 100% of its own energy

Off-grid island home in Florida hits the market for $1M

May 14, 2018 by  
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Near the southern tip of Florida , a breezy and 100% self-sufficient island home has hit the market for a cool million. Located along the Intracoastal Waterway just east of Keewaydin Island, the 5.3-acre property on Little Marco Island is an idyllic private getaway with a custom-built cottage and a front-row view of waterfront wildlife, from dolphins to gopher tortoises. Keep reading for an inside look at the off-grid island home currently listed on Premier Sotheby’s International Realty . Built in 2000, the two-bedroom, one-bath home comes with an adjacent cottage set on 1.8 acres. The 1,968-square-foot main property is set on 3.5 acres of land with a private beach frontage and a boat dock. Only accessible by boat, the off-grid property feels completely secluded despite the fact that its only minutes away from Marco Island, Isles of Capris and Naples. Related: Florida power company scraps nuclear project, will pursue solar power instead Built largely of timber to complement the island setting, both properties stay naturally cool with long eaves , tall ceilings, and large openings that admit cross breezes. On days of unbearable heat however, air conditioning always remains an option in the main home, which is powered entirely by solar energy. The property is equipped with a backup generator, while water is harvested in cisterns and treated through a four-part filtration system. + 11781 Little Marco Island Images via Premier Sotheby’s International Realty

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Off-grid island home in Florida hits the market for $1M

Pinwheel-shaped timber cabin grows more beautiful over time

May 1, 2018 by  
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Like fine wine, the timber facade of this charming Norwegian cabin will improve over time. Designed by Mork-Ulnes Architects , the contemporary dwelling sits just outside of Oslo in the pine forest where it serves as a retreat for an American geologist and his family. Named after the nearby lake, Mylla Cabin is designed to blend in with its surroundings over time as its untreated pine exterior acquires a silvery patina to match the snowy landscape. Designed with a pinwheel shape, the Mylla Cabin comprises four intersecting volumes each topped with a sharply pitched roof. The 940-square-foot cabin includes three bedrooms, two bathrooms, storage space, and even a two-person sauna —an iconic piece of Scandinavian culture. In fact, the entire design was guided by local traditional vernacular, specifically the “hytte,” Norwegian countryside cabins marked by their simplicity and use of natural materials. Related: Tiny alpine cabin rewards mountaineers who reach its stunning yet wild heights As a contemporary interpretation of the traditional ‘hytte,’ Mylla Cabin is clad in untreated heart pine planks that will weather over time. The interior is finished in plywood and outfitted with custom plywood furniture, from the children’s bunk beds and bed frames to the dining table and shelving. “The wings of the house engage four distinct characters of the landscape: the great room looks onto Mylla Lake, the guest room looks towards the rolling hillside, the kids’ room looks up at the sky, and the bedroom has a private view of the towering forest beyond,” share the architects. + Mork-Ulnes Architects Via Dezeen Images by Bruce Damonte , via Mork-Ulnes Architects

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Pinwheel-shaped timber cabin grows more beautiful over time

Architecture students build a tiny CLT classroom in just 3 weeks

April 3, 2018 by  
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A team of 13 University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) architecture students designed and built Emerge, a tiny timber classroom that will help promote sustainable forestry through education. Located in the woods near Eugene, Oregon, the student project was crafted as part of UNL’s PLAIN design/build program in collaboration with the 673-acre family-owned Bauman Tree Farm, and The DR Johnson Lumber Mill. The micro cabin was erected in just three short weeks thanks to the use of prefabricated cross-laminated timber panels that make up the walls and floor. Set atop concrete footings, the elevated 80-square-foot Emerge cabin strives for minimal landscape impact and to foster a greater appreciation of the timber industry and the surrounding forest. The cabin opens up through a wooden pivot door raised using a counterweight system. A large skylight funnels natural light and canopy views into the one-room interior. Movable cross-laminated timber sitting blocks and a table allow for customization of the classroom. Related: Nation’s first large-scale mass timber residence hall breaks ground in Arkansas The students also designed screens with irregular patterns to communicate the relationship between the lumber industry and the forest. The screens, located at the front and rear, comprise slatted timber elements that appear straight at the bottom and become increasingly angled near the top to evoke tree branches. The visual change references the process in which trees become dimensional lumber. “[The] compound angles…create a rain screen for exposed CLT ,” add the students. This pattern is also visible around the skylight. + University of Nebraska-Lincoln Architecture Department Via Dezeen Images via Mike Lundgren

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Architecture students build a tiny CLT classroom in just 3 weeks

Eco-hotel cabins float on a lake in the south of France

February 19, 2018 by  
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Paris-based Atelier Lavit recently won our hearts with their stunning treehouse guestroom , but the forest retreat isn’t the only dreamy hotel they’ve created. The architecture firm is also behind Cabanes des Grands Cepages , an eco-hotel comprising ten timber suites—some of which are built to float on water. Set in the south of France in an idyllic fishing reserve near Avignon, these ten units on the shore of a la Lionne lake embrace elegance through simplicity with minimal embellishments and carefully placed reveals that provide privacy and views. Commissioned by Cabanes Nature et Spa, the Cabanes des Grands Cepages eco-hotel offers unique retreats with some hidden on land behind reeds while others are more visibly placed on the water. The cabins are carefully oriented to preserve guest privacy. Timber cladding—particularly the vertical timber slatted screens that are a nod to the lake reeds—visually unites the various dwellings. Related: This gorgeous modern treehouse hides a surprising interior “The 10 suites evoke primitive buildings on the shore of the lake; floating on the water like rafts or on pilots like palafittes,” wrote the architects. “The architectural work perfectly matches with the lacustrine tubes from which it resumes and rationalizes the elegant vertical thrust.” The project was mostly prefabricated offsite and then reassembled on site over the course of three months to minimize landscape impact. + Atelier Lavit Images via Atelier Lavit , © Francis Pelletier

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Eco-hotel cabins float on a lake in the south of France

Dreamy cabin is the perfect lakeside escape for large families

February 16, 2018 by  
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Montreal-based YH2 Architecture has given the traditional lakeside cottage a modern refresh in Window on the Lake, a minimalist timber cabin that derives its name from its stunning glazed end wall. Located just steps away from the shores of Lac Plaisant in Quebec’s Mauricie region, the gabled dwelling features a clean and minimalist design so as not to detract from its surroundings. The spacious family cottage sleeps up to 12 across two floors. Built of timber inside and out, Window on the Lake was designed to “capture the essence of cottage life” by creating a sense of warmth and connection with nature. The gabled building is clad entirely in white cedar that will develop a patina as it weathers over time. “The balloon frame, with its exposed wooden studs and joists painted white, gives the building a unique rhythm of shadow and light,” wrote the architects. “This is the cottage as an expression of the art of living: a gentle, simple, pure way of life.” Related: Decrepit lumberjack shack transformed into a beautiful retreat with minimal site impact The south facade closest to the lake is fully transparent to provide the open-plan living area with stunning lake views. The glazed gabled wall lets in sunlight and warmth during the cold months, while an extended roof overhang and mature trees mitigate solar heat gain in summer. Three large vertically oriented glazed panels punctuate the east and west facades to strengthen the connection with nature throughout the home. The cottage also includes two ground-floor bedrooms and a large, open sleeping area on the second floor. + YH2 Architecture Photo credit: Francis Pelletier

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This rustic Norwegian cabin looks like four different buildings all joined together

February 6, 2018 by  
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This rustic cottage in Norway looks like a patchwork of different buildings, all mashed together to create a cohesive home. The building, designed by Oslo-based studio Rever & Drage Architects , comprises a sequence of distinct spaces, each one addressing a different daily need of the owners. The cabin has a transparent garage that acts as an entry point and storage area where the family can leave their gear for various outdoor activities. This space leads to a laundry area, bathroom, and kitchen and into the main lounge that offers views of the surrounding landscape. Related: Coastal cabin in Norway is a perfect indoor retreat for outdoor lovers Each of the spaces uses different cladding materials and construction techniques, with the imperative of being able to withstand the harsh weather as an overarching design principle. The cabin, in a way, can be seen as a single building or four separate structures. “The outside composition is that of a traditional row farm, where buildings with different functions and different construction techniques are arranged in a line corresponding with the dominant direction of wind,” explained the architects. Related: Fantastic Norway’s Mountain Hill Cabin is Part Ski Slope, Part Winter Retreat While the north part was built using a late-medieval building technique with large, narrowing logs, the living room features more elegant 19th century notched logs, all stained in a dark tar finish. The kitchen has a contemporary feel, with a green roof. The garage, at the southern end of the building, features an exposed timber frame and polycarbonate sheets to let in tons of light all year long. + Rever & Drage Architects Via Dezeen Photos by Tom Auger

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This rustic Norwegian cabin looks like four different buildings all joined together

Modern black house juts out like a natural extension of Quebecs forest landscape

December 1, 2017 by  
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If you haven’t tired yet of the blackened timber trend, feast your eyes on this modern retreat that’s backed up on a forested hillside in Quebec, Canada. Montreal-based studio Atelier General designed The Rock, a boxy timber home that, like its name implies, is meant to evoke a natural extension of the mountainous terrain. Full-height glazing and extensive use of wood inside and out blur the line between indoor-outdoor living. Topped with a flat roof, the two-story home avoids a monolithic appearance thanks to its main living space that, supported by slender black columns, juts out towards the landscape, shielding a carport underneath. Black-painted timber clads the 2,300-square-foot home that’s contrasted by light-toned timber used in the interior and outdoor terrace that extends into the hillside. Related: Floating sauna with charred timber cladding boasts minimal site impact The entrance is located on the smaller ground floor, which contains two bedrooms and a bathroom. A large south-facing open-plan living area, dining room, and kitchen take up the majority of the L-shaped upper level. Full-height glazing wraps around the communal area that also opens up to a small triangle-shaped deck. The master ensuite is placed between the two decks. Polish concrete floors are used throughout the home. + Atelier General Via Dezeen Images via Atelier General , photos by Adrien Williams

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