- Sustainable Architecture
- A pair of cabins in the hills of Eastern Washington
Board & Vellum and Kathleen Glossa of Swivel Interiors, both Seattle-based firms, were commissioned to design the cabins and their interiors.
Careful architectural detailing, practically the same in the two small cabins, highlights the materiality of the exposed plywood paired with the salvaged wood from the barn. Installed with special care and craftsmanship, the barn wood shares its history on its patinaed surface with all its scars, wear—and even lichen—left intact, enhancing the cabins with a natural and unique texture. The locally-sourced, durable material palette also includes concrete flooring, metal siding and tin roofs, typical of this kind of architecture with its strong vernacular connotation.
Despite their diminutive size of just 83 square metres, and their simplicity of form, the cabins are surprisingly spacious inside, with welcoming, comfortable rooms for guests visiting in any season. For Kathleen Glossa from Swivel Interiors, authenticity was a must for the materials and furnishings. She sourced them from a mix of custom-designed pieces mixed and legacy pieces (literally salvaged from the client’s storage locker). Each cabin has a wood-burning stove to gather around, so here the fuel is sourced right onsite.
The two cabins were constructed as guest accommodation for the main house, within easy walking distance, where everyone dines together. This allowed the interior designer to limit appliances and equipment to under-counter fridges and coffee machines only.
In remote locations like this, immersed in nature, being sustainable is important both for the longevity of the construction and for being an integral part of the place, rather than a blight upon it Just like that old barn, the source of much of the reclaimed material and enduring longer than the human lives that constructed it, these cabins are built to last for generations. Architecture that bears witness to the past and provides shelter for the creation of new memories of the people staying there now and in the future.
Interiors: Swivel Interiors
Architecture: Board & Vellum
Blacksmith: Black Dog Forge
Structural Engineering: CT Engineering, Inc.
Mechanical Engineering: Premier Mechanical & Electrical.
Location: Eastern Washington, USA
Photography: John Granen