Wednesday, June 17, 2009

I’ve been refining my latest model of the cabin I want to build when I move back east. I think I’ve got it pretty much figured out. It would be 512 square feet, strawbale on three sides (the south side will be largely windows and doors, so I will just in-fill the post and beam with 2 x 6 studs and thick insulation), there’ll be a stone floor (or possibly brick) with braided area rugs. A built-in bed, a loft above the bedroom/sitting area, a wrap-around porch on two sides, enclosed on the north side, so it could be used in three seasons and as a sleeping porch in summer, a masonry fireplace, wood cookstove and probably propane cooktop (for summer cooking), my non-powered fridge, solar and woodstove heated water, a composting toilet, a nice pantry that could easily be expanded by 64 square feet, bringing the total square footage of the house up to 576—91 square feet larger than the house I live in now.

This model doesn’t waste any space the way some of my previous models did. It’s pretty efficient, I think. At some point I’d like to build a balsa-wood scale model of it.

Speaking of using space efficiently, the other day I drastically rearranged the kitchen. By drastically I mean going so far as to move the refrigerator. There’s not really much else you could move around in there. The fridge was right next to the stove, which is always a bad place for a fridge, plus whenever someone had the fridge door open you couldn’t get past them to get into or out of the kitchen. I moved the fridge into a corner where I had some shelves and the table, moved one of the shelves where the fridge had been, moved the hexagonal table out into the living room, moved the rectangular harvest table into the kitchen and put it under the window where it fit perfectly between the counter and the fridge. What a huge difference it has made! It feels so open and airy and bright. It’s easy to move around and nobody’s blocking anyone’s way. Why didn’t I think of doing this sooner?

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