When local schools closed due to the corona virus, we found ourselves at home adjusting to the new normal along with the rest of the world. While we were able to adjust our work flow to serve our clients and make sure our projects kept moving forward, we found that we had little time left for the small design joys that make the practice of architecture so rewarding.

In response, one of our partners decided that he was going to schedule in an hour every day after ‘school’ to sketch/doodle/design some quick, loose designs for cabins. Why cabins? Well, when you are stuck inside a 900 sqft townhome in an urban area that isn’t functioning, a cabin in the woods is a good fantasy.

Below you will find four cabins that he has done so far. They range from a 720sqft cabin on stilts to a 2520 cabin with attached artists studio. See below for more detail.

Cabin 1

The first cabin. A small but not too-small cabin for a single person or  a small family. This ground level cabin has a simple gable form that uses CLT panels to create a covered outdoor space to take advantage of the outdoor fireplace on cool nights. In this design we explored the idea of a linear organization with a central use core that housed all of the plumbing and storage. This frees up the exterior walls for doors, windows and of course, bookshelves. Water storage tanks and solar panels make this cabin fully self sufficient for off the grid living. 54'x20' interior

1-Water feature  2-Entry  3-Mudroom  4- Kitchen  5-Living  6-Outdoor patio  7-Powder/laundry  8-Bathroom  9-Bedroom  10-Office/Guest

Second cabin. A little smaller to see just how tight we can get without sacrificing functionality. The use core is shifted to provide circulation on one side only. A wood brining stove replaces the masonry fireplace and a side porch orients the view from the long side of the building. A submerged cistern allows for use in drought prone areas. 44'x16'

1-Storage/laundry  2-Kitchen  3-Living  4- Porch  5-Bath  6-Bedroom

cabin 3

Third cabin. This is getting closer to house than cabin. The design is organized by a series of masonry walls and an interior beam line allowing for a large amount of glazing on the tall side of the building. A shed roof orients the cabin to the tall side and a detached artist’s studio can function as guest quarters. 84'x20' interior. 


1-Entry  2-Kicthen 3-Living  4- Dining  5-Outdoor patio  6-Studio/guest  7-Pantry  8-Bath  9-Bedroom  10-Closet  11-Utility  12-Water storage

cabin 4

Fourth cabin. A little whimsy. Where is this one? Maybe off the coast of Florida? Or Maine? Or maybe it could be on the top of a hill in the cascades. It does have the whiff of a fire tower to it. A central open plan with lots of windows and a sleeping loft accessed by ladder. 24'x24'.

1- Dock  2- Kitchen  3- Living  4- Bath  5- Bedroom


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