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A Well-Planned Hot Mess


Remember this photo I shared on Instagram? I know, it looks like a hot mess, and it kinda is at the moment. But big things are happening to this space over the next few days!


This wall runs three stories. You see the small triangular area on the loft, the large portion on the main floor, then what you can't see is that it runs into the walkout lower level.


Let's break it down and I'll share what's going on . . .




I want to first point out a couple of really important aspects of this wall, and of the cabin in general. What you see in the triangular area (where the arrow is pointing) is blown insulation made of recycled newspapers. It was important to us to use insulation with a high R factor to reduce heating and cooling costs, but using a material that was safe and sustainable was equally important. We're proud that throughout the cabin this material was used.


So what gives with the blanket insulation?


There are a few areas in the cabin for which we requested a sound barrier, this is one of those places. Along this wall will be a floating steel and wood staircase - super cool, right? - the other side of the wall has a bedroom (main level twin over full bunk). We had the sound barrier installed to reduce noise that might occur as people where going up and down the stairs while someone was resting in the bedroom.


This sound barrier was also used between the bath on the main floor and this same bedroom, between the loft master and the bath, and between the alcove bed and the bath. Here's to a peaceful rest!


Those little square openings aren't windows into the bedroom (collective sigh of relief :) ). They are niches for the bunk room. Ask my family and they will tell you that I have a HUGE pet peeve of staying somewhere that doesn't offer 1) a light for reading in bed and 2) a place to lay my glasses/phone/book, etc when I'm ready to doze off. And, since this is a bunk room, each bed has it's own reading sconce and wall niche. You'll find the same attention to detail in each of the four bedrooms as well as the alcove bed in the library.


Okay, but what's going on that wall? I'm glad you asked. A driving mantra of the cabin is, "that it showcases the possibility of designing a sustainable, luxury home on a budget using everyday materials". And I ask you, what's more everyday than plywood? The three story wall shown here will be covered in sanded plywood and finished with Odie's Oil for two key reasons. First, it's pretty cool looking and will be a great design counterpoint to the other elements in the space. Second, it's practical. The staircases in the cabin are narrow (the cabin has just a 935sf footprint!). Using drywall would have meant constant touch-ups, plywood is a much more durable material. You're correct if you're thinking sanded plywood isn't cheap, but our budget considerations took into mind the longevity of each product and the cost to maintain or replace.


Hot mess or not right now, this wall was planned to the Nth degree. Expect those same considerations throughout the Carpenter's Cabin. Enjoy your stay!


Stay.Green.

Jami