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Never Seen a House Built Like this Unique Vacation House in the Middle of Nature

Houses January 3, 2017

Never Seen a House Built Like this Unique Vacation House in the Middle of Nature

You have to see this house! We can all learn something from this unique mastery of simplicity when it comes to building.

This vacation house, set in the middle of nature, is an attractive design in a nice setting, but there’s something else to it. While on this site we’ve featured a number of prefab homes, tiny houses, modular construction projects, metal building home options, and a ton of other things, I’ve never seen a building style like this. I’m interested.

We’re always seeking for simple building styles, because that’s part of our ‘mission’ on the site — to try to find enough options for everybody to find something that suits them and move towards a goal where everybody has their own home, whether a prefab, modular, tiny house, house boat, park model, cabin, house on wheels, whatever. So check out this building style.

It’s a building called the “Rio Bonito” and it’s by architect Carla Juacaba (of Brazil). She’s simply constructed two stone walls (although in my conception of making this simple I’m picturing cinder blocks or even concrete perhaps). Then she’s embedded the flat metal frame of the floor and ceiling into these two walls.

This sets the house up off the ground. Then she’s just slid stairs in front of the patio that is part of the entire floor.

There’s also a stone stairway on one of the walls, which leads the “cabin” (can you call it that?) up onto the roof.

She set a few walls in the center of the building to have a private bathroom, and for walls she just glazed them with large glass panels / sliding doors.

Heat? She left part of the stone wall hallow, so it can serve as a fireplace. It has a grate in front of it. The decor is minimalist. It has lights, but I suspect the kitchen stove might be wood burning, set in an adobe or other clay constructed cooking “desk”. There’s also a propane-style cookstove set up there.

For floors, she used plain long wooden floor boards with a shiny finish.

The furniture is minimal.

While this construction is an example of how simplicity can lend itself to style, you can tell this project was undertaken by a real stylish architect because of how she harmonized the shapes and sizes, the various materials, and even the colors (look at the colors of the patio, for example). What do you think?

As for lights, they have some set up. I’m not sure whether they power these with solar panels or a generator or what. I’m not sure how they get water to the cabin, either, for showers and cooking / washing. There are off-the-grid options for these things though that could be implemented.

These images and the one above are big, so they’ll look best on a large computer screen. They might also take a minute to load.For more work by Carla Juacaba, find her in our directory, where you can also find a bunch of other listings depending on your style interests, from prefabs to tiny homes. You can also check out some cabins here, tiny homes here, prefabs here, and metal buildings elsewhere on our site.

These images are big, so they'll look best on a large computer screen. They might also take a minute to load. These images are big, so they'll look best on a large computer screen. They might also take a minute to load.

4974 total views, 3 today

This Metal Home Ranch House is Amazing, but the Real Star is the Interior

Metal Buildings December 30, 2016

This Metal Home Ranch House is Amazing, but the Real Star is the Interior

Many people think about having a house out on a farm, and some of us already live out on farms and ranches or large pieces of land. Barn houses and metal homes both are seeing something of a surge of interest lately. Metal homes as an alternative building method that allows for inexpensive, strong and durable buildings that can also be reused, recycled or modified later on, and barn homes are a traditional style of building people are liking for their own homes.

Here we have a combination of both, and not only that, they added wood and stone work to create a livable space that might catch some eyes. The metal barn home here is designed and built by a company we’ve featured a number of times here on our site: Morton metal buildings — they do a number of different building types. And the job they’ve carried off here is one that I think will catch a lot of attention: a traditional rustic-style farm house that combines residential with equestrian areas.

You can see from the photo above and those below (all the photos on our website expand when you click them) that the interior of this metal building home is also a comfortable, traditional style. You can see that they’ve covered most of the building in wood cladding and some of it in stone work, including that outdoor seating area in the photo. But looking at the interior shots, I think a lot of you might agree that the interior work on this ranch house metal home is the real star of this construction project.

Some more information about this metal building:

Project Number: B066037669

Location: Pringle, SD
Dimensions: 46’W x 12’H x 105’L
This home/stall barn was built for Kerry & Dr. Lew in Pringle, SD

Special Features:
Morton’s Hi-Rib Steel
Cupolas
Wood Siding
Diamond ‘M’ Sliding Doors
Loft Door
Morton’s Energy Performer Insulation Package

Find more from Morton steel buildings, and the metal and steel design and build companies we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more metal homes, click here.

This Metal Home Ranch House is Amazing, but the Real Star is the Interior

3898 total views, 17 today

Now This Is a Barn House, and It’s a Metal Building

Metal Buildings December 30, 2016

Now This Is a Barn House, and It's a Metal Building

Barn houses and metal homes both are seeing something of a surge of interest lately. Metal homes as an alternative building method that allows for inexpensive, strong and durable buildings that can also be reused, recycled or modified later on, and barn homes are a traditional style of building people are liking for their own homes.

Here we have a combination of both. The metal barn home here is designed and built by a company we’ve featured a number of times here on our site: Morton metal buildings — they do a number of different building types. And the job they’ve carried off here is one that I think will catch a lot of attention: a totally white-clad farm house that combines residential with equestrian areas, under a pale grey shingled roof.

You can see from the photo above and those below (all the photos on our website expand when you click them) that the interior of this metal building home is also a comfortable, traditional style.

Some more information about this metal building:

Project Number: B091005395
Location: Oconomowoc, WI
Dimensions: 42’W x 14’H x 60’L
This horse barn was built for Kari & Stu of Oconomowoc, WI

Special Features:
– Morton’s Hi-Rib Steel
– Shingled Roof
– Cupola
– Dormers
– Porch
– Morton’s Energy Performer Insulation Package

Find more from Morton steel buildings, and the metal and steel design and build companies we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more metal homes, click here.

Now This Is a Barn House, and It's a Metal Building

3258 total views, 15 today

Prefabs houses are one thing, but would you live in a cardboard house?

Prefab December 16, 2016

Cardboard House

So you may be familiar with prefabs made of wood, stone, metal, bricks — we have a number of those covered on this websites — and even foam prefab and modular houses, but now in the everexpanding market of home building materials: cardboard.

The idea here is that a Dutch house designer thought up cardboard houses when he found himself throwing away a lot of cardboard packing tubes, and he thought why not make something out of them. Now, people have been making furniture out of cardboard and other products, like Google’s Cardboard project, but he made a prefab house.

“The fact is that the more you explore cardboard, the more benefits it offers,” according to designer Maarten Heijltjes of Waarmakers. “It solves two of the main problems in building – it is structural and insulating at the same time, while also being light enough to transport inexpensively. Sure, when people hear of a cardboard house, inevitably there’s some scepticism. But it’s a question of perception. Tell them that it’s a house made of wood, but that we’re just using wood fibre in a far more efficient way, and they start to see it makes sense.”

How it works: many layers of cardboard are stacked to make modular panels. Then they mold these modular panels around a house frame.

“First, they make 1.2-metre-deep segments, or modules, constructed from 24 layers of waterproofed, recycled cardboard moulded around a house-shaped frame,” according to 1843 Magazine. “These are then fixed together to make the finished building. Thanks to this system of pre-made sections, each house – starting at around €25,000 and available with elegant plywood interiors, glass doors and even wood burners – can be put together in as little as a single day.” They’re also very light for transportation to a building site.

The interiors are plywood. They add glass doors and wood stoves.

Construction time: 1 day at minimum. Sold so far: 8. They’ve received as many orders for more. They expect the prefab modular houses to last up to 100 years. Cost: right now around 25K Euros (26K U.S.).

“Actually, when you look at it, cardboard is beautiful,” said Heijltjes. “It has a texture and warmth to it.”

Read more about Wicklehouse in our directory of prefab homes.

cardboard house Cardboard House

6314 total views, 4 today

Creating Winter Wow In the Garden

Home and Garden December 15, 2016

Winter Wow In the Garden

Even if your garden is buried under a thick layer of ice and snow, it can still shine during the winter!

A garden with solid “bones” will look good all year ‘round. The shape of the hedges, the graceful arching of tree branches, or the pop of color from persistent fruit such as ornamental crabapples or mountain ash, all create a multitude of appealing shapes, forms, and textures. Bark color is important as well: think of the brilliant yellows or reds of dogwoods. Include some conifers in your garden landscape for the texture and year ‘round foliage – and don’t forget that not all conifers are green. Look for yellow junipers, or blue spruce. When selecting trees and shrubs for your garden, don’t simply focus on the beauty they bring during the growing season. When they are dormant, they can lend important structure to the landscape.

Although many gardeners perform a fall clean up before the snow flies, it may be desirable to leave some plants intact. Beautiful seed heads from herbaceous perennials and graceful ornamental grasses look spectacular with a dusting of snow. As an added bonus, trapping some snow in the base of the plants will help insulate the plants from severe weather.

Hardscaping materials are important, too: when shopping or designing pergolas and trellises, consider how they will look in the wintertime, when the rest of the garden is covered in snow and these important elements stand out and make a statement. Even the garden gate and decorative fenceposts can make a difference.

Whether you gaze out at your garden from the inside of your house, or from the driveway or walkway out front, you should enjoy the view in the winter almost as much as you do in the summer. If you notice some way to make an improvement for the following year, jot your ideas down and take your list into the garden centre in the spring.

By Sheryl Normandeau

Winter Wow In the Garden

78 total views, 1 today

Futuristic World Culture Center Springs Up in the Desert

Unusual Dwellings December 8, 2016

Futuristic World Culture Center Springs Up in the Desert

A new building is nearing completion in the desert of Saudi Arabia. It’s the Center for World Culture, a project to promote cultural development within the country. It’s a Saudi Aramco Oil initiative for King Abdulaziz.

The building is designed by Snohetta, and it’s located in Dhahran, in the eastern province. It has an auditorium, cinema, library, exhibition hall, museum and archive. It’ll seat 930 visitors who come to the World Culture Center for opera, symphony concerts, musicals, and speeches.

Gallery:

1082 total views, 2 today

How About A Metal House Ranch Home?

Metal Buildings December 2, 2016

How about a Metal House Ranch Home

This is quite the building and quite the setting, too. In a wide open piece of green farmland sits this newly built traditional style metal barn house. Metal homes as an alternative building method that allows for inexpensive, strong and durable buildings that can also be reused, recycled or modified later on, and barn homes are a traditional style of building people are liking for their own homes.

Here we have a combination of both. The metal barn home here is designed and built by a company we’ve featured a number of times here on our site: Morton metal buildings — they do a number of different building types. And the job they’ve carried off here is one that I think will catch a lot of attention: a totally deep red-clad farm house, with white and black trimmings, that combines residential with equestrian areas, under a forest green shingled roof.

You can see from the photo above and those below (all the photos on our website expand when you click them) that the interior of this metal building home is also a comfortable, traditional style.

Some more information about this metal building:

Project Number: B091005395
Location: Oconomowoc, WI
Dimensions: 42’W x 14’H x 60’L
This horse barn was built for Kari & Stu of Oconomowoc, WI

Special Features:
– Morton’s Hi-Rib Steel
– Shingled Roof
– Cupola
– Dormers
– Porch
– Morton’s Energy Performer Insulation Package

Project Number: B085044663
Location: Lonedell, MO
Dimensions: 36’W x 10’H x 72’L + 30’W x 10’H x 60’L
This stall barn w/ living quarters was built for Don in Lonedell, MO

Special Features:
Morton’s Hi-Rib Steel
Morton Foundation System
Cupolas
Porches
Eyebrow Overhangs
Windows w/ Shutters
Wainscot
Thermax Insulation
Morton’s Energy Performer Insulation Package
Double Dutch Doors
Diamond ‘M’ Sliding Doors

Find more from Morton steel buildings, and the metal and steel design and build companies we’ve indexed in our Home Designers and Builders Directory. You can search the company’s name and look builders near your area. And to see more metal homes, click here.

How about a Metal House Ranch Home How about a Metal House Ranch Home

14336 total views, 306 today

Transforming Tiny House Built for Under $22,000

Unusual Dwellings November 11, 2016

Transforming Tiny House Built for Under $22,000Transforming Tiny House Built for Under $22,000Transforming Tiny House Built for Under $22,000Transforming Tiny House Built for Under $22,000Transforming Tiny House Built for Under $22,000

An expanding house? Yes, and it a tiny house as well. This unique garden house set on runners can slide to larger or smaller sizes, and it was built by a fellow for his mother.

It had to meet his mother’s requirements, though: It had to serve as a place to write, to throw large diner parties (for 25-30 people), and serve well for camping and guests who want to stay a night or so.

When collapsed, the tiny house is 20-by-13 feet (6-by-4 meter) structure. The maximum expansion of this house is almost 39 feet (12 meters) in length, so the max total interior space is 484-square-feet (45 square meters). However, each time you expand this house or shrink it, you’re going to have to get up and exercise.

this transforming retreat house built on a budget of 20,000 Euros (just under $22,000 USD). Schols built this house in 4 months, doing a lot of the component work himself.

According to the designer, Dutchman Caspar Sclols:

“Garden House Project. This is a dynamic garden house which I built at my parental house. The house can be easily adjusted to any weather type, mood or occasion. It is mainly built in Douglas wood, fully insulated and heated by a traditional Norwegian wood stove. The wooden floor contains rollaway beds.”

For more tiny home builders, find them in our directory.

Transforming Tiny House Built for Under $22,000

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Garden Refresher Checklist

Home and Garden November 4, 2016

Garden Refresher Checklist

Is your garden looking unruly and overgrown? If you’ve decided it’s time for a refresher, it’s tempting to rush in and get started right away. Before you expend a huge amount of labor and dole out a bunch of money, it pays to take a close look at all the elements of your garden and assess your priorities for the space. This checklist is a good place to start:

Do you know where the slopes and valleys are in your yard? Are there areas where drainage is a problem, and plants will not grow?

What about microclimates? Is there a sheltered location in your garden where you can plant warm-season vegetables, or maybe a borderline-tender shrub? Alternatively, is there an issue with a cold sink anywhere in your garden, where you have to worry about planting frost-fragile squash, for example?

– Are there areas in the garden where the wind batters your plants?
– How much rain and snow falls on all of the areas of your garden?
– Have some of the trees grown in and are now casting a lot of shade on existing flowerbeds?
– Has the pH of your soil changed? Is your soil too saline? Does it have a sufficient amount of organic matter?
– Have some of your groundcovers spread aggressively and become too competitive with other plants in the area?
– Does your garden have winter interest?
– Do you need privacy from your neighbors, or a noise barrier from the street?
– Do any of your plants require pruning or deadheading? Does the hedge need to be shaped?
– Do you need to divide or transplant any large perennials?
– Are you growing any toxic plants that need to be removed due to the presence of children or pets? What about noxious weeds? Check your local weed control act and make sure you’re not accidentally growing anything you shouldn’t be.
– Do you want to focus on growing edible plants over ornamental ones (or vice versa)?

Once you’ve considered the answers to all of these questions, you’ll have a solid foundation to start revitalizing your garden and getting it back into tip-top condition!

By Sheryl Normandeau

37 total views, 1 today

Shipping Container Castle … DIY Too!

Shipping Container Buildings October 26, 2016

Shipping Container Castle ... DIY Too!

A unique shipping container castle … with a stair-tower to rooftop patio! It’s unusual in every way, and it was built on a budget. This amazing shipping container home was sent in by one of the members of the Cool Stuff Interesting Stuff News page, Ronda Rowan. Here’s her guest post:

“My husband and myself built this home out of three 40′ shipping containers. We had a 30k cash budget to build with.

“Our county allowed us to build with an owner/builder opt-out no inspections permit. We followed all fire, safety codes and had prior land inspections. We started with a building list for supplies and a tight budget. Welding, cutting, grinding took 6 months, many hours of hard work.

“As my husband welded, I would draw up my ideas of what I wanted constructed. Our home is very unusual in every way. We insulated the containers underneath with 2″ closed cell sprayfoam, ceilings interior 5″ open cell sprayfoam insulation, exterior 5” closed cell sprayfoam insulation, then painted to preserve insulation.

“We live in Arizona desert where temperatures reach 115 summer, 10 at night in winter so we didn’t want the metal containers to transfer the heat or cold. Keeping our cooling/heating costs minimal, it works excellent.

“Our stair-tower was an old water tank we reused and welded stairs inside to access the rooftop patio. To make it look different added top to appear to be a castle.

“We have been given many unique pieces of metal objects to add to our home turning them into pieces of art. They each have a special meaning to us. We owe no debt, no mortgage, and build our home with our own hands. We are very proud to become the first shipping container home allowed to build in our county in southern Arizona. We are the ambassadors of future builders in our area.”

Wow. Thanks Ronda!

Photos by Ronda Rowan. For more shipping container buildings, click here.

shipping-container-castle-diy-too-3 Shipping Container Castle ... DIY Too!

12186 total views, 3 today

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