Category: environmental design

So Hard to Contain Me

By , February 2, 2015 4:22 pm

You know my passion for small spaces and recycling so when I found this site Montainer they are a one stop shopping site for taking a shipping container and creating your home, office, ADU, yoga studio or an extra sleeping room.

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solar panels & banana yellow

They have a team of architects, engineers, builders and designers that put the package together for you.              Design Build concept.

 

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deck adds a whole new floating room

It may be hard to stop with just one, go ahead and stack or attach them. When building it is always the city that can be tricky to navigate, and this company has adapted the recycled containers to meet code and move forward to permit stage. Go to this site for more ideas. Want to buy your own metal box go here.

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double decker- like legos stack them high

So many creative ideas- What would you use one for? Go ahead and dream…..

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Shelter or Sculpture?

By , June 28, 2014 3:53 pm

Often my posts are about the newest, smartest way too live small or how to downsize and stay sane.

Since summer is here everyone is trying to find the best beach rental cottage, camp ground to pitch a tent or the latest boutique hotel to land and relax at the Oregon Coast.

This month I have a art exhibit at Manzanita News & Espresso and it poses the question – are those beach driftwood forts, shelter or sculpture? Here is my artists statement.

photo7The crowds are gone, I walk on the beach and come upon driftwood that has been assembled into primitive shelters with only washed ashore elements, gifts from the sea, wood, stones, seaweed or when viewed in solitary to me  they become solitary sculptures, left over remains of another existence, often I would feel like a archaeologist.

Viewing the art in the context, seeing it in its natural environment. Some of the pieces are ephemeral, persisting only for a few hours or days- exposed to erosion and wind and the sea, striving to fight the elements of nature, their creators have vanished.

I started to document the pieces for the last 5 years, feeling like  My physical interaction is as important as the viewing. I would enter any portal, to find choirs and alters, shrines the view looking out to the sea was peaceful and safe. I would feel the energy of the people who built the piece, was it a couple a family, how old were they? Why did they build this, and what conversations took place, and how did the construction bring them together?

Why do we still build shelter with no intention of using it? Such a primitive instinct.

Each work grows, stays and decays.  I am the observer the one who captures the serenity. The tide will once again regain and re-give.
It reminds us that nothing can or should last forever.
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Owned by Bunny and Star they have a devoted following of locals and tourists. This is where you pick up your CSA box on the front porch. There is a long waiting list to show your art at the famous coffee shop in town, mine was three years.

On the corner is a lovely shady patio and water bowl for Fido and the inside is filled with magazines- good mags and all beachy unique local artists jewelry. There are surf magazines and newspapers if you really want to know what is going on in the world. The chess set has had many matches played with my son.  There is no wi-fi – but rumor is that they just bought into it.

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The greeting cards are $5 each and I am donating all the funds to Lower Nehalem Land Trust. The land trust has a beautiful garden, but you must wait for that post another day. I am hanging out in a beach shelter!

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So what do you think Shelter or Sculpture?

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Enjoy the summer where ever your travels lead you.

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Trashy Art

By , May 22, 2014 3:34 pm

One of my favorite places to visit is Manzanita on the Oregon coast only two hours from Portland.

Manzanita Beach

Manzanita Beach

There is a recycling center CartM which is creating a zero waste community at the coast.

What to do with spare tile!

What to do with spare tile!

One of the best events is the Trash Art show located in the Trash Gallery – inside the Refinery Resale store. They have done this for the past 16 years! My beach cottage is filled with a treasures from this show every year. Did I tell you it is also where the transfer station is – really the dump.

Entrance to Refinery- Resale Shop

Entrance to Refinery- Resale Shop

Trash Art Gallery- Small is Beautiful

Trash Art Gallery- Small is Beautiful

 

They recycle over 40 items and also have educational outreach programs- I like the one about composting- to learn more go here. I have a worm bin and compost bin in Portland- so easy to maintain and plants are so happy, I do not even use a garbage disposal.

Compost Examples

Compost Examples

It was a delightful surprise to see so many artists of all talents participate, I always seek out a piece from               MJ Anderson the marble sculpturess- see her work at Coast Cabins Gallery if you visit the coast. I even had her over after the art show to make her famous Italian pasta- of course she presented it in a Lucinda Parker bowl.

 

Zesty MJ Anderson

Zesty MJ Anderson

 

Lucinda Parkers zesty ceramic bowl

Lucinda Parkers zesty ceramic bowl

MJ at work

MJ at work

 

You never know what treasures or who you will run into at the dump these days- not too trashy!

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Granny knows how to Downsize

By , January 9, 2014 11:50 am

My 95 year old mother in-law lives in a Granny Flat, she came west from cold Ohio to live behind her sons home in warm San Luis Obispo 15 years ago. Evelyn climbs the exterior staircase to her one bedroom 400 sq ft apartment above a garage. I was inspired to build my own studio following my Granny’s pioneering idea. Mother in-law apartments or Granny Flats have been around for years, but no longer just for Granny’s, ADUs ( Accessory Dwelling Units) offer rental income, work studios, and promote community Multi-generational living and increase your homes property value.

Granny Evelyn with son Damian

Today the modern term is Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs).

In the fall of 2012 I went to a day long summit the International Living Future Institute held in Portland Oregon. Build Small LIVE LARGE  brought together architects, developers, builders, remodelers, urban designers, policy makers and real estate professionals to discuss, inspire and share ideas to craft strategies for this growing housing market. Go here to see videos from the summit. This was the first ever summit on space-efficient housing!

Currently the planning bureau and Portland City Council have waived Systems Development Charges on ADUs and they have increased the ADU size limit from 33% to 75% of the primary dwelling or 800 sq ft, whatever is smaller.

Go to this website for a one stop source of information about ADU’s, granny flats, in-law units, backyard cottages.

Let me share with you my 380 sq ft Sellwood Studio ADU that I build last year!

First Permits and paperwork- Upfront work but well worth it.

Now the fun part tearing down the old garage that just was a storage place for junk not a car.

The size 16 x 24 was similar footprint to the garage but was vaulted and has a private patio

BEFORE rear of existing garage

AFTER rear of Sellwood Studio

Emily Refi was the architect that I worked with she now works for Waterleaf Architects.

Architect Emily Refi at front of Studio-                            complete with red   Vespa scooter!

I like how the Studio is similar in scale to the red cottage in front and that it sits in the middle of my urban garden.

Red Cottage in front is 900 sq ft

Since the garage was demolished a small garden shed as built with nod to the old garage- the original green door was used.

View from Studio set in middle of garden

Thanks Granny Evelyn for inspiring me to build a modern flat!  Next time we meet I will take you inside!

 

French Garage Makeover

By , January 17, 2012 11:02 am

Hi all! Happy New Year!

I’m getting back into the swing of things finally and today, I have a fabulous garage make-over to share with you – all the way from Bordeaux! (You all know how I have a thing for garage projects!)

This tiny 441 sq. ft. space was designed by the ingenious team at FABRE/deMARIEN.

Check this out before shot…dull, dingy and dark.

Passage Buhan modern
Not anymore, step into this light, airy, beautifully designed space...
Passage Buhan modern exterior
Passage Buhan modern exterior
Glass walls allow plenty of natural light in and minimal white furniture and cabinetry keep the look crisp and clean.
Passage Buhan modern dining room
That wooden cube houses the sleeping loft, bathroom with shower, washing machine and storage. The small staircases leads up to the bed.
Passage Buhan modern dining room
The built in desk and convertible sofa offer both function and flexibitly – which is SO key when dealing with limited square footage!
Passage Buhan modern living room

Passage Buhan modern living room
The sleeping loft has clothing storage and shelf space. The skylight makes the space fell less closed in.
Project Buhan contemporary bedroom
A simple, but functional bathroom is underneath the bed area. Love the generous counter space!
Project Buhan contemporary bathroom
The deck extends the living space and is a great place for dining al fresco on a lovely evening.
Passage Buhan modern patioPretty fantastic right? To check out the project in its entirety and read more about the process please go here.
Have a wonderful week!

All images via Houzz

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