Home Work:
Handbuilt Shelter


Table of Contents

About the Author


Feedbback from Our Readers


Sample Chapters:
Look Inside Our Book
Louie Frazier
The Inspiration for Home Work
The Yurts of Bill Coperthwaite
Natural Buildings
Photography by
Catherine Wanek

Bill & Athena Steen
Cob Houses of Mud & Straw

Michael Kahn
Sculptural Village in the Arizona Desert

Mongolian Cloud Houses
How to make a Yurt & Live Comfortably

Books on Natural Building from Shelter Publications

Tiny Homes cover
Tiny Homes

Builders of the Pacific Coast cover
Builders of the Pacific Coast


The Barefoot Architect cover
Barefoot Architect

The Septic System Owner's Manual cover
The Septic System Owner's Manual

Mongolian Cloud Houses
Mongolian Cloud Houses

Wonderful Houses Around the World
Wonderful Houses
Around the World

Home Work: Handbuilt Shelter

Home Work cover: click on cover for larger image

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a kaleidoscopic portrait of human ingenuity”

San Francisco Chronicle

By Lloyd Kahn

256 pages 9" x 12" Trade paperback
$28.95 2004 ISBN 978-0-936070-33-9

A stunning sequel to the classic 1973 book Shelter, Home Work illustrates even more imaginative ways to put a roof over one’s head, some of which were inspired by Shelter itself. Home Work showcases the ultimate in human ingenuity, building construction, and an independent lifestyle.

Home Work describes homes around the globe built with soul, creativity, and designed with a solid understanding of natural materials, structure, and aesthetics.

Home Work contains over 1,000 photos and 300 line drawings, stories of real people building and living in their own homes, plus photos, stories, and feedback gathered over the thirty years since Shelter was first published.


• Homes • Cabins • Cottages • Bungalows • Homesteads •

• Sheds • Shacks • Huts • Treehouses •Bottle Houses •

• Yurts • Hogans • Tipis • Tents • Beach Shacks •

• Stilt Houses • Greenhouses • Small House Designs •

• Domes • Zomes • Fantasy Houses • Gypsy Wagons •

• Workspaces • Barns • Shops • Mississippi Shotgun Shacks •

• Kitchens • Bedrooms • Bathrooms • Studios •

• Wood • Straw Bale • Cob • Stone • Bamboo • Thatch •

• Timber-Frame • Log • Ferro-Cement • Papercrete • Earthbag •

• Builders • Designers • Artists • Homesteaders •

• Dreamers •

  • Master builder Louie Frazier’s Japanese-style pole house in Northern California, reachable on a 500cable across a river
  • Ian MacLeod’s handbuilt stone house in South Africa, where baboons jump on the roof at night
  • Ma Page’s bottle house in the Nevada desert
  • Artist Michael Kahn’s semi-subterranean sculptural village in Arizona
  • Bill and Athena Steen’s strawbale houses
  • Ianto Evans’ and Linda Smiley’s cob houses in Oregon
  • The Archlibre group of countercultural builders in the French Pyrenees
  • Bill Coperthwaite’s spectacular 3-story yurt in the Maine woods
  • Bill Castle’s finely-crafted log home and sauna in the NY Appalachians
  • A commune in the Tennesee mountains
  • The “Flying Concrete” brothers in Mexico and their far-out sculptural structures
  • Barns in California, Washington, and Connecticut
  • Photo-essays of Lloyd Kahn’s trips to Nevada, the Mississippi Delta, Costa Rica, Nova Scotia, and Baja California
  • Photos of buildings all over the world by photographers Yoshio Komatsu and Kevin Kelly + more, lots more . . .

What People are Saying About Home Work

Please pass along my thanks and heartfelt appreciation to Lloyd Khan, whose Shelter & other books were an inspitation early, often, and for many years. Lloyd, Rudofsky, Baldwin - all have inspired my (satisfying!) lifework, helping create energy & resource-efficient green buildings. It’s a wonderful thing to see in Home Work a new companion to Shelter - it’s like being reunited with an old, lost friend! I can hardly wait till it arrives.”
Ian G. Theaker, P.Eng
Your book has helped me realize I don't have to be rich, and I can do it with my own two hands. What a gift!
Pippa Wyrill
I'm a young French girl and I discovered "Home Work" in September, 2006. I really, really love your book, it's amazing ! I look at it all the time, and read a few part sometimes. Now, I have almost read everythings. I think, now, it's like I know each pictures by heart. So I need more – more pictures, more reading, that's a book of dreams. When I saw it in the shop, I thought ‘that’s my bible !’ I was always looking for that kind of book about tiny houses, travellers' houses …but this one is the best I ever saw, and I speak about it with a lot of people. On Christmas, I made a present to my Dad with this book. Now he say, as well, it’s an amazing book.
PS: I’m sorry for my English. I hope you'll understand what I try to say in spite of my mistakes.”
I was given a copy of your book Home Work for my birthday. I wanted you to know that it has inspired me in more ways than one, but most of all to pull my hands out of my pockets and to be creative with my own hands. Thank you!!
Bryce Kirk
…what’s really inspiring is that this kind of home-building has gone on and on after those first years and first publications. And, this expands the territory so beautifully. I will get the word out and around!
Gary Snyder
Lloyd Kahn presents all the information in an accessible and fun and informative way. What a great trip! And what a lot of work went into this 5-star book!
Holy cats! It’s amazing. I can’t put it down. Great images, lots of color, diversity…you’ve got a winner here, brother...I just had to call you. Holy cats!
Bill Castle
Belmont, NY
HOME WORK is wonderful work, Lloyd.
Stewart Brand, founder
The Whole Earth Catalog
Thank you for the complimentary copy of Home Work. Unlike the slick publications with which I’m bombarded, yours is crammed full of projects, many of which I find very interesting. I applaud your assiduity.
Claude Stoller
Professor Emeritus (ret.)
Department of Architecture
UC Berkeley
Awesome. I was blown away…it’s Shelter times 10.
Dan Price
Joseph, Oregon
…magnificent, invigorating, deep, so personal, and simply inspiring
Kevin Kelly
author and former exec
editor of Wired magazine
The book is delicious, soulful, elating, inspiring, courageous, compassionate, so loyal to your circle of exuberant and inventive and sexy and truly tasteful - in the granite meaning of the word - comrades, beautiful, so beautiful, what an array, what homage to tree and rock and grass...God and goddess love you and your team, my man - you pulled it. Truly an absolute gem and clarion call.
Peter Nabokov, Chairman
Department of World Arts and Cultures, UCLA
Outstanding!… What a beautiful book and what fascinating content! I've been in the ‘alternative building business for over 30 years and am delighted that I can still be (pleasantly) surprised!
Michael D. Peyton, WI
John van der Zee, author
The Gate: The True Story of the Design and Construction of the Golden Gate Bridge and old friend of Lloyd’s
I’m impressed beyond belief.
Jeb Barton,
Nomadics Tipi Makers
Bend, Oregon
The most wonderful thing I’ve ever seen or heard of in my life.
Virginia Kahn, 101, California
Lloyd’s mom

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