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Home Work:
Handbuilt Shelter


Table of Contents

Home Work: Handbuilt Shelter

by Lester Walker

The image below is a two-page spread (pages 70-71) from Home Work: Handbuilt Shelter. Click on the image to view as a PDF document.

More Sample Chapters:

Louie Frazier
The Inspiration for Home Work

Bill & Athena Steen
Cob Houses of Mud & Straw

Michael Kahn
Sculptural Village in the Arizona Desert

The Yurts of Bill Coperthwaite

Mongolian Cloud Houses
How to make a Yurt & Live Comfortably

Page 82 Text: The six little house plans shown here are from Tiny, Tiny Houses by Lester Walker. Lester is a rarity —an architect who not only has designed these little houses, but has drawn clear and useful plans that he shares with others.

There are 40 designs in this unique book. The first tiny house I remember seeing and categorizing as a tiny, tiny house was a complete surprise. In the summer of 1963, I discovered one while hiking along what seemed to me to be a very treacherous, untraveled animal trail on a remote part of Maine’s coastline, about an hour east of Cutler. I couldn't imagine how anyone might have transported materials to this spot without having lugged them over windswept cliffs and slippery rocks. But there it was, a tiny little gable-roofed cabin no larger than 8' * 10' built entirely of tarpaper and driftwood, complete with an Adirondack- style built-in twig bed, a perfect little kitchen that used water from a nearby spring, and a writing desk under a window facing the sea. Set back about one hundred feet from the ocean on a rocky beach in a small cove, the house was surrounded by cliffs topped with huge hemlock and pine trees. Later, when I got back to town and learned that it was built by a little lady in her eighties who loved nature and solitude, I realized that the art of building was not necessarily reserved for architects and builders. All that was needed, it seemed, was the will. Two years ago, I hiked back to this site with my camera, notepad, and the hope that I could find this little building to include in Tiny Houses. No luck. A big storm had apparently blown it away. But this home will remain in my mind as one of the most beautiful buildings I’ve ever seen. It may well have been the inspiration for this book. –LesterWalker

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