Your home can warm your heart and feed your soul. To ensure that, build a sacred space. It doesn’t have to be a temple or altar. In our house, it’s the sleeping porch. Napping on an outdoor bed full of blankets and pillows in the sun with a book over my eyes is my idea…

Bobby McHugh, Old School Design-Build

Did You Build It All By Yourself?

Proud parents

When I talk to people about my Holy Ghost building, my shed/cabin/studio in western North Carolina, invariably the first question they ask is: Did you build it all by yourself? To which my enthusiastic response is: Of course not, and even if I had hammered every single nail myself, I still wouldn’t have done it…

Dogtrot Dreams

Josh MuCullar over at Houzz has a lovely post on dog-trot houses, including this gem: I grew up in the rural Piedmont of the Carolinas, so scenes of abandoned tenant houses, sharecropper’s shacks, and dog trots were the everyday architecture of my childhood. They were humble, poetic, and simply beautiful, without pretense. A very functional…

Reclaimed cedar boards

This must’ve been used indoors, as it’s still quite bright, but riddled with thin little nails. I’m not quite sure yet how I’ll use it, perhaps as siding on the east wall with the three tall windows. I’m also unsure if I should bother taking out all the nails, or just nail them down. I…

Framing Begins

I have arrived at the site to find that the contractor I hired to do the foundations and floor framing is hard at work. Jim Keenan of Hickory Nut Builders has a reputation in the area for doing good work, and it doesn’t hurt that he and the building inspector are good friends 😉 Jim…

The Half-Monitor Brooding Barn

Turns out there’s a much less pretentious name for the kind of structure I’m building than “clerestory cabin”: old-timey hen-house or brooding barn. It seems funny, but knowing that I am building what is essentially a chicken coop is really moving for me. My dad’s dad, Bill Holman, was born on 10-10-1910, and died too…

Here Comes the Sun: Passive Solar Parking Lot

Here comes the sun  (dadda dum dum) …No, I’m not building a parking lot–it’s just that I’ve been confusing myself with a whirlwind of research about passive solar home design, so this post is a parking lot where I can post some of the things I’ve been looking at so I don’t lose them, but…