Cold weather, short days, the soon-coming twenty ninth birthday – these things combine to cause me particular feelings…  Feelings which compel me to subscribe to magazines…  Magazines with pictures of houses that exhibit well-planned decor and environmentally responsible building practices.  Id est: Dwell Magazine.  (Fun Fact:  “Id est” is the long hand of “i.e.” and is Latin for “it is”.  Horray for Fun Facts with The Domestic B!  Id est great!)

You are probably cooler than me and likely have already boarded the Dwell Magazine train.  In fact, you have probably left the station and are now sitting comfortably enjoying the back and forth cradle rocking motion that the Dwell Magazine train produces while zooming responsibly forward toward your ultimate destination that is your perfectly imperfect solar powered, pre-fabricated, Nordic-designed, roof-top organic gardened, 900 square foot, less-is-better dream house.  Well, move on over, modern chic amigo!  I have hopped this train like a Depression Era hobo – toot toot – and loan me a nickel to buy a bottle of moonshine.

Forgive me if I froth.  It’s just that in the Dec/Jan issue that just arrived, the majority of the photos and articles flaunt beautiful pre-fabricated, container or module homes, and the amount of practicality and beauty and economy and environmental responsibility mingling so sexily together is a huge turn on.  Examples:

A lakeside retreat built from two main modules.

Inside the lakeside retreat where glass connects the two modules.

Another pre-fab house clad in concrete panels.

A bathroom inside a house made from shipping containers. Check the shower!

Totally hot, right?

You too can indulge your desire for pre-fabricated design porn at www.dwell.com/prefab.

If you didn’t already know, many pre-fab homes cost less than half of what it costs to build one from sticks and bricks.  (Naturally, you do have to own a piece of land to place the thing upon…)  And pre-fab manufacturers know that “modern” architecture is not for everybody and offer any kind of Cape Cod / ranch style / California Cottage / plantation / adobe / teepee dwelling you can think of.  Google that shit!  It’ll getcha.

Here’s a particularly nice floorplan from www.bluhomes.com  *Note:  not all pre-fab houses are inexpensive.

Dig the sitting area in the Master Bedroom and aaaaall that closet space.

Since manufacturers are able to produce modules en masse, (this plan is probably six modules, maybe three?) they are able to order lumber already cut to the correct size, thereby saving wood, money and time.  And customization is totally doable! 

I was lucky enough to recently get to witness the lego-stacking pre-fabulous building process right here in Santa Barbara.  It took all of about one day with a crew of hard hats, a big-ass crane, and four semi trucks.  Mr. Homeowner and his family set up a barbeque and a shade tent on the sidewalk across the street from where his house was being stacked, grilled up some hotdogs, and watched their house materialize before their eyes.  Cabinets, fixtures, windows, tile, siding already installed.  It will take 8 more weeks for all the fine-tuning to happen, electrical, HVAC, plumbing, etc to be hooked up, but heck!  How awesome, right?  See below:

Three cheers for beautiful, responsible house making!
And three cheers to you!  May you have a glorious Thanksgiving and remember to actually give thanks. 

2 thoughts on “Dwelling

  1. Dana says:

    Cool! I definitely went through a big Dwell phase. I’ve been obsessed with the idea of a container guesthouse or workshop a la http://media.treehugger.com/assets/images/2011/10/sunset-exterior-2.jpg

  2. Whoa. This is rad. Maybe let’s put one on top of one of our garages? From there we could look directly into the eyes of evil (across the fence, and up a story) and say “shut up”.

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