Recycled Materials (157)

Magical Hobbit-Like Eco Cave House

Underhill is an incredible hobbit-home eco-cave house built into a hillside. The off-the-grid house is cleverly constructed to resemble a cave. With no electricity in the house, the stone, wood and rustic features truly make you feel like you’re stepping back in time.

For more information on this house, visit www.livingbiginatinyhouse.com.

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Small Home in Vermont Woods

Photo by Susan Teare.

Near the northern tip of Vermont’s Green Mountain National Forest and only accessible by a private pedestrian bridge over the New Haven River, this energy efficient mini-cabin uses all green materials. Think natural pine, reclaimed wood floors, and locally-sourced antique furniture and bathroom fixtures. The 600-square-foot cabin doesn’t feel tiny thanks to high-lofted ceilings, light pine walls, and natural light galore. We especially like the twisting spiral staircase and cozy wood burning stove…
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Bobby's Mobile Art Cart

Rolling art studio

Bobby Heffelfinger created this rolling art studio in West Marin county, California, on a 2013 Ford F-350 truck with mostly recycled materials (left over from various building projects). He started with the truck chassis and built a flatbed with 2 × 2 steel square stock.

It’s immaculately built. It’s framed with 2 × 2 fir studs. Siding is 1 × 4 tongue-and-groove cedar. Curved rafters were cut out of fir 2 × 12’s. Roof sheathing is 1 × 6 redwood tongue-and-groove.

It’s 8 feet wide by 14 feet long. Inside, it’s 7 feet to the top of the arch. The roof is 18-gauge copper with standing seams. Windows were built out of redwood from an old water tank.
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The Laughing House

Laughing House

Tiny Homes: Laughing House

From Tiny Homes: Simple Shelter

Lloyd Kahn’s book, Tiny Homes, featured Linda Smiley’s Laughing House, located in Oregon at the Cob Cottage Company. Linda is a director of Cob Cottage Company as well as a master cobber and therapist. She teaches Sculpting Sacred Spaces, Interior Design, and Natural Plasters and Finishes.
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Lloyd Kahn and His Greenhouse

Art Rogers Family Album, November 6, 2014 | The Point Reyes Light

lloyd_kahn_and_his_greenhouse

Lloyd Kahn and his greenhouse built from recycled windows and handmade bricks made from local clay. Photo by Art Rogers

Lloyd, who was born and raised in San Francisco, began building things in the late 1940s when, at age 12, he helped his father construct their family home in Colusa. After building a large timber home for himself from recycled materials in Big Sur in 1967, he became interested in domes and began his publishing career with a series of publications titled Dome Book 1 and Dome Book 2; he became the “Shelter” editor in 1969 for the Whole Earth Catalogue. He moved to Bolinas in 1971, built a dome, tore it down and replaced it with a stud-framed house and became a pioneer of owner-built simple structures using recycled materials. He has since published over 20 books on the subject, including  Shelter, and The Septic System Owners Manual, Builders of the Pacific Coast, and Tiny Homes: Simple Shelter.

He will be giving a slide presentation and book signing this Friday, November 7, 2014, 7:30 p.m., at the Point Reyes Presbyterian Church for his latest book about living in small structures, titled Tiny Homes on the Move: Wheels and Water.

For more information, visit www.pointreyesbooks.com.

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Alice's Custom-Built House Truck

house truck

My ex-husband and I built our home in the ’70s on a 1956 White truck, which cost $250. We used many recycled materials. Shipping crates became siding, discarded oak pallets and tiles became the table, etc.

CB-05It had a circulating toilet, double-paned Plexiglas windows and skylights, and a 30-inch porch at the rear. It had a 125-gallon water tank and a 60-gallon propane tank — self-contained. It’s solidly built and runs great!

There were two full-size bunks for the four kids. The upper bunk had been removed when these photos were taken. The spinet piano can barely be seen.

Studs were linked at the bottom with ¼-inch steel angle. It prevented disaster when one time someone drove into the side of the house truck. The driver totaled his car; we only have to replace a bit of siding.

The window design was determined by the size of the discarded Plexiglas scraps, and inspired by bathroom windows in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco.

We bolted three metal baffles between the stove and walls, staggering the bolts so as not to transfer the heat. The stove could be fully fired up and the wall behind it would still be quite cool.

I learned all my carpentry and building skills working on this truck. One day while driving myself, the porch railing got caught in something, ripping it half off, and it was sitting on the ground. What to do? I pulled out some tools and reattached it on the spot before driving away.

–Alice

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