• COMPACT CABINS

    Author Gerald Rowan presents 62 designs for cabins ranging from 100 to 1000 square feet, all of them appealing, affordable, comfortable and energy-efficient.
    Item: 4436

    Author: Gerald Rowan

    Format: Paperback

  • BUDDHA HOUSE

    A picture-book of the Buddha House, by famed craftsman and natural builder Sun Ray Kelley. This house, built in Washington State, features sculpted walls of stucco, stone and cedar shakes, round timberframe construction, a living roof, and Sun Ray's signature curved ridgebeams and railings made from whole trees--roots and all. A collection of 60 color photographs of this one-of-a-kind house with sayings from the world's great thinkers that help explain SunRay's philosophy of natural building. This book is the first in a series documenting the work of SunRay Kelley and his School of Natural Living.

    Item: 6728

    Author: CHRIS MCCLELLAN

    Format: Paperback

  • BUILDING A LOG CABIN RETREAT

    If you've ever dreamed of building a rustic log cabin to use as a weekend hideaway, hunting lodge or even an emergency retreat, this book tells you how to make it a reality. This step-by-step guide is chock-full of tips and advice culled from author Michael Mulligan's decades of experience. Specializing in do-it-yourself projects that use improvised materials and avoid bureaucratic hassles, Mulligan first shares invaluable insight on finding your land and negotiating the shark-filled waters of real estate deals. Then, in straightforward terms that even a novice can follow easily, he walks you through the construction process, from selecting and preparing the logs to erecting and chinking the walls to building the roof and finishing the interior. He also includes a chapter on dispensing with public utilities in meeting your water, sewage, heating, cooking, lighting, power and refrigeration needs. Finally, for those who wish to tackle a scaled-up version of Mulligan's basic design, he presents the formulas necessary for calculating the parameters and selecting the proper material.

    Item: 6601

    Author: Michael Mulligan

    Format: Paperback

  • DIY BOOK OF BACKYARD SHEDS & TINY HOUSES

    Buildings from internationally recognized small living expert Jay Shafer have attracted the attention of CNN, Oprah, Fine Homebuilding and This Old House. Ranging in size from 100 to 120 square feet, these tiny backyard buildings can be used as guest cottages, art or writing studios, home offices, craft workshops, vacation retreats, or full-time residences. This revised edition of Tumbleweed DIY Book of Backyard Sheds and Tiny Houses is filled with photos (including many that weren’t in the original publication) and elevation drawings, as well as door and window schedules for constructing six of the handsome little buildings. You’ll also find an extensive how-to set of instructions that can be applied to any backyard building project.

    Item: 5895

    Author: Jay Shafer

    Format: Paperback

  • DIY FURNITURE

    Featuring 30 designs by leading designer-makers from around the world, DIY Furniture shows you how to use simple techniques to make stunning designer furniture from scratch. Using the step-by-step guides, you can easily assemble all the projects from common materials that can be found at the local hardware store. Along with designs for seating and storage, the book also features projects for making your own bed, wardrobe, lighting and garden furniture. Each project features hand-drawn diagrams with short, easy-to-follow instructions on how to build the piece. Whether building from scratch or customizing existing designs, you can create unique designer pieces at a fraction of the normal cost with DIY Furniture. Brief biographies of all the featured designers are included at the end of the book.

    Item: 6660

    Author: Christopher Stuart

    Format: Paperback

  • EARTHEN FLOORS

    For most of human history, people have lived in durable, comfortable buildings made from natural materials such as soil, sand, rocks and fiber. All over the globe, these ancient traditions persist; a quarter to a third of the world's population today lives in houses built partially or entirely of earth. Conventional Western building techniques using industrial materials may save time and create efficiencies, but these perceived savings come at considerable financial and environmental cost.

    As well as boasting a unique and beautiful aesthetic, natural building techniques are accessible, affordable and nontoxic. Earthen Floors: A Modern Approach to an Ancient Practice is the first comprehensive, fully illustrated manual covering the history, use and maintenance of this attractive, practical flooring option. This detailed, fully illustrated guide explains every part of the process, including:

    • Sourcing and harvesting materials
    • Preparing the subfloor
    • Pouring, finishing and sealing the floor
    • Living with and maintaining your earthen floor

    Because information on creating quality earthen floors was not previously widely available, there have been some negative experiences. Drawing on the combined knowledge of the most qualified earthen floor practitioners, as well their own substantial experience, the authors deliver the definitive resource for this exciting technique, perfect for everyone from the novice to veteran builder.

    Item: 7213

    Author: S. Reay Crimmel & J. Thomson

    Format: Paperback

  • GREEN HOME BUILDING

    According to conventional wisdom, building a green home is an expensive endeavor. The standard approach treats green as an add-on, tacking "premium" products, finishes and equipment onto a traditional home design. As a result, many green home projects end up over budget or fail to achieve their environmental and performance goals.

    Green Home Building explodes the myth that green homes have to cost more. Using proven methods based on applied building science, authors Miki Cook and Doug Garrett show how to:

    • Lower base construction costs to provide funding for high performance upgrades
    • Achieve a net zero energy home, including "zero-ing" water, waste, carbon and associated costs within 15 years
    • Live affordably into the future, despite anticipated rising costs for fuel, water, materials, taxes and health care

    This comprehensive guide to building green on any budget defines the strategies that maximize the return on green investments. Written for anyone who has ever been swayed by the argument that the price tag limits how green a home can be, Green Home Building is a must-read for builders, contractors, architects, designers and homeowners.

    Item: 7436

    Author: Miki Cook & Doug Garrett

    Format: Paperback

  • GREEN HOME IMPROVEMENT

    In a tight economy, this book offers clear financial benefits by helping homeowners immediately cut their utility bills. Many of these smaller home improvements require only a modest investment, and give readers an edge when they sell their homes: Buyers are looking for energy efficiency, and they are also tuned into green health and environmental concerns.

    The book's projects include quick and easy, low- or no-cost tasks — like insulating a water heater, sealing foundation cracks or painting with insulating paint — as well as bigger-ticket items, such as installing a new energy-efficient heating system, windows or green flooring. The more than 65 "Go Green" tips highlighted throughout the book give readers ideas to make their homes and lifestyles greener.

    Projects include:

    • Green flooring and paint options
    • Environmentally friendly cabinetry and countertops
    • Whole-house insulation and weather-stripping
    • High-efficiency heating and cooling
    • Water conservation
    • Efficient lighting, appliances and plumbing fixtures, including Energy Star and WaterSense models
    • Solar electric and water heating systems
    • Eco-friendly roofing and siding
    • Energy-efficient windows, doors and skylights
    • Green materials for patios, walkways and driveways
    • Landscaping and irrigation for water conservation and energy
    Item: 4123

    Author: DAN CHIRAS

    Format: Paperback

  • HOUSING RECLAIMED

    Housing is a fundamental human right. For most of human history, our homes were built by hand from whatever local materials were available. However, since the Industrial Revolution, most housing has become little more than quickly constructed, mass-produced, uniform boxes. At the same time, the invention and standardization of the 30-year mortgage and our ever-increasing reliance on credit has come to mean that most of us never own our homes outright.

    Housing Reclaimed is a call to arms for nonconventional home builders. It examines how technological advances, design evolution and resourceful, out-of-the-box thinking about materials and efficiency can help us meet the challenge of building affordable, environmentally friendly, beautiful and unique homes. Focusing on the use of salvaged and reclaimed materials, this inspirational volume is packed with case studies of innovative projects including:

    • Phoenix Commotion — working together toward low-income home ownership through sweat equity and 100% recycled materials
    • HabeRae — revitalizing neighborhoods by creating urban infill using modern technology and sustainable and reclaimed materials
    • Builders of Hope — rescuing and rehabilitating whole houses slated for demolition

    These projects and others like them demonstrate that building one's own home does not have to be an unattainable dream. This beautifully illustrated guide is a must read for anyone interested in creating quality zero- or low-debt housing, reducing landfill waste and creating stronger communities.

    About the author
    Jessica Kellner is editor-in-chief of Mother Earth Living magazine (www.motherearthliving.com) and a passionate advocate of using architectural salvage to create aesthetically beautiful, low-cost housing.

    Recommended Product for Wiser Living: Today, more than ever before, our society is seeking ways to live more conscientiously. To help bring you the very best inspiration and information about greener, more sustainable lifestyles, MOTHER EARTH NEWS is recommending books and products to readers. For more than 40 years, MOTHER EARTH NEWS has been North America's "Original Guide to Living Wisely," creating books and magazines for people with a passion for self-reliance and a desire to live in harmony with nature.

    Item: 5298

    Author: Jessica Kellner

    Format: Paperback

  • HOW TO BUILD AN UNDERGROUND HOUSE

    Malcolm Wells' fourth book about underground architecture will show you that building a house underground is not only possible but also a very good idea for those who want a friendly-with-the-earth life.

    This book covers everything you need to know about underground building, from concept basics to house plans you can use for your own underground home.

    An architect by trade, Wells lived in The Underground Art Gallery, in Brewster, Mass., and wrote several books about this subject, which he began promoting in 1964. A pioneer of underground building and natural design, he penned such best-selling books as Gentle Architecture and The Earth-Sheltered House. How to Build an Underground House is scanned from his own handwritten and illustrated pages and is self-published.

    Item: 632

    Author: Malcolm Wells

    Format: Paperback

  • KEEPING BEES IN TOWNS AND CITIES

    Keeping Bees in Towns and Cities features everything an urbanite needs to know to start keeping bees: how to select the perfect hive, how to buy bees, how to care for a colony, how to harvest honey, and what to do in the winter. Urban beekeeping has particular challenges and needs, and this book highlights the challenges and presents practices that are safe, legal and neighbor-friendly.

    The text is rounded out with profiles of urban beekeepers from all over the world, including public hives at the Maryland Center for Horticulture; beekeeping on an office balcony in Melbourne, Australia; and a poolside hive at a hotel in Vancouver, British Columbia.

    Item: 6396

    Author: Luke Dixon

    Format: Paperback

  • MAKING BETTER BUILDINGS

    From foundation to finish, a wealth of information is available on sustainable construction methods. Entire volumes have been published on individual green and natural building techniques! But with so many different ideas from which to choose, there is no single resource that allows an owner or builder to quickly and objectively compare the merits of each system for their particular project.

    Making Better Buildings cuts through the hype and provides the unvarnished facts about the upsides and downsides of the most widely discussed materials and technologies. Drawing on the real-world experiences of designer/builders, this comparative guide systematically and comprehensively examines each approach in terms of:

    • Cost, sourcing, labor intensity, and ease of construction
    • Energy efficiency, embodied energy and environmental impacts
    • Availability/accessibility
    • Viable applications and future potential

    Each chapter is rounded out by a chart that summarizes the material in a quick and accessible manner.

    Whether you are an owner preparing to build a green or natural home, or a conventional contractor determined to integrate sustainable alternatives into your existing construction practices, this up-to-the minute resource will help you make the best decisions for your project, while meeting your energy, efficiency, budgetary and site-specific needs.

    Item: 7048

    Author: Chris Magwood

    Format: Paperback

  • OFF ON OUR OWN

    Off On Our Own is Ted Carns' manual for living off-grid, how he created the various systems that power the Stone Camp and what he thinks about oil, self-reliance, waste, nature and reducing one's carbon footprint to walk more gently on the earth.

    Item: 7343

    Author: Ted Carns

    Format: Paperback

  • PREPPER'S SURVIVAL HACKS

    This guide features easy-to-follow picture tutorials on how to build your own DIY survival projects (50 in all!). One of the prepping movement’s most prolific authors, Jim Cobb has taught readers how to fortify their homes, survive for weeks without electricity, and prepare themselves financially for years of economic turmoil. Now he turns to some of his favorite DIY projects to teach his thousands of fans how to create cheap, easy, and ingenious tools to help survive any natural disaster. Prepper’s Survival Hacks is filled to the brim with intriguing, fun, and innovative projects to secure any home.

    Item: 8900

    Author: JIM COBB

    Format: Paperback

  • REAL GOODS SOLAR LIVING SOURCE BOOK

    What book would you want if you were stranded on a desert island? Widely regarded as the bible of off-grid living, the Solar Living Sourcebook might be your best choice. With more than 600,000 copies in print worldwide, it is the most comprehensive resource available for anyone interested in lessening their environmental footprint and increasing their energy independence.

    This 14th edition of the sourcebook is the ultimate guide to renewable energy, sustainable living, natural and green building, off-grid living and alternative transportation, written by experts with decades of experience and a passion for sharing their knowledge. This fully revised and updated edition includes brand new sections on permaculture and urban homesteading, and completely rewritten chapters on solar technology, sustainable transportation and relocalization. It also boasts greatly expanded material on:

    • Natural building
    • Permaculture and biodynamics
    • Electric and biofuel-powered vehicles
    • Passive solar
    • Solar water heating
    • Grid-tied photovoltaic systems

    You’ll also find maps, wiring diagrams, formulas, charts, electrical code, solar sizing worksheets and much more.

    Whether you're a layperson or a professional, novice or longtime aficionado, the Sourcebook puts the latest research and information at your fingertips … everything you need to know to make sustainable living a reality.

    Item: 7458

    Author: John Schaeffer

    Format: Paperback

  • ROUNDWOOD TIMBER FRAMING

    This definitive manual marks the birth of a new vernacular for the 21st century. More than 400 color photographs and step-by-step instructions guide you through the building of anything from a garden shed to your own woodland house. This practical ‘how-to’ book will unquestionably be a benchmark for sustainable building using renewable local resources and evolving traditional skills to create durable, ecological and beautiful buildings.

    Item: 5269

    Author: Ben Law

    Format: Hardcover

  • SHELTER II

    Shelter II was published in 1978, five years after the book Shelter. It was a sequel in a sense, but a more sober and practical book (in black and white, not color) for any owner-builder interested in building a simple stud-frame house. The heart of the book consists of an introduction to the principles of house design, followed by a condensed 24-page instruction manual for the novice builder for building a stud-frame home: foundation, floor, wall and roof framing; roofing, windows, doors, interior finish, as well as plumbing and electrical work.

    Featured is a section of complete, to-scale drawings by Bob Easton of seven different homes, accompanied by floor plans. These unique drawings allow the first-time builder to visualize each structure as a whole by showing every member of the house frame.

    Indigenous builders are studied with an eye to the still-usable skills of the past. There are many photos of North American houses and barns: still-standing reminders of an era of practical building.

    Rehabilitation projects then underway in major cities are also covered. There's a critical analysis of domes - they were found to be neither practical nor durable, and there's a detailed critique of America's program in those years to establish colonies in space.

    Shelter II tells a story: Practical builders (past and present, in country and city) have always built with time-tested techniques and materials readily at hand: lumber, earth, stone, concrete, brick, thatch or abandoned city buildings. Design is governed by weather, purpose and economy. Building technique is determined by tradition, experience and practice. Then, as now, initiative and hand labor by owners can beat the high cost of building and reduce or eliminate lifetime mortgage obligations.

    Out of print for some 20 years, Shelter II is an integral part of the Shelter Publications suite of books on handbuilt homebuilding, and we're happy to make it available once again.

    Item: 7195

    Author: Lloyd Kahn & Bob Easton

    Format: Paperback

  • SHELTERS, SHACKS AND SHANTIES AND HOW TO BUILD THEM, 2ND EDITION

    Shelters, Shacks and Shanties, Second Edition presents lively, step-by-step tutelage on building all types of temporary and long-term accommodations from both natural and man-made materials. Originally published in 1914, this practical classic is as essential a guide for today's modern homesteader as it was at the turn of the 20th century.

    Included are instructions for dozens of worry-free shelters for you to choose from, including a sod house for the lawn, a treetop house, over-water camps, a bog ken and much more. Satisfying the builder's need for the creature comforts of home, it also provides tips on how to build hearths and chimneys, notched log ladders, and even how to rig a front door with a secret look. Illustrated throughout with a bounty of helpful line drawings, Shelters, Shacks and Shanties, Second Edition harkens back to the can-do spirit of the American frontier that still thrives today.

    Item: 4847

    Author: D.C. Beard

    Format: Paperback

  • THE ECONEST HOME

    An EcoNest is not just a home … it is a breathtakingly beautiful structure that nurtures health and embraces ecology. This unique approach to construction combines light straw clay, timber framing, earthen floors, natural plasters and other natural techniques with the principles of building biology to create a handcrafted living sanctuary. By bringing together time-honored traditions and modern innovations, owners of EcoNests enjoy living spaces that reflect the best of both worlds.

    The EcoNest Home is an in-depth exploration of the benefits of choosing this technique over conventional alternatives, combined with a complete practical guide for prospective designers and builders. Authors Paula Baker-Laporte and Robert Laporte draw on their own extensive experience to provide:

    • A detailed explanation of the nature-based science behind EcoNests.
    • Fully illustrated, step-by-step instructions to guide you through construction.
    • Dozens of inspiring photos of completed projects.

    The most comprehensive, North American resource on light straw clay construction, written by its leading proponents, The EcoNest Home is a must-read for anyone considering building their own healthy, affordable, environmentally friendly, natural home.

    Item: 7687

    Author: P. Beker-Laporte, R. LaPorte

    Format: Paperback

  • THE GREENED HOUSE EFFECT

    It’s said that the greenest building is the one that’s already built, because so much energy is embodied in the existing structure.

    With greater public awareness of the need for energy independence, the issue of how we can make our existing homes more resource-efficient is becoming ever more critical. Residential buildings make up a large fraction of our energy needs, largely due to heating and air-conditioning. So it’s no longer enough to simply do the small stuff, like switching to compact fluorescent bulbs, or turning down the thermostat at night.

    In The Greened House Effect, author Jeff Wilson brings his twenty-five years of construction experience and hands-on knowledge of home building to bear on making our current houses cleaner, greener, more comfortable, and healthier. Think of a deep energy retrofit (DER) as a “whole home makeover”—one that represents a significant investment, but that saves money from the get-go by capturing the energy you “drop on the ground” every month, every year, through inefficiency, poor design, or simply living in a typical older home. This isn’t a book about freezing in the dark, but a solution that allows us to live more comfortably while making a positive impact in the world.

    “We can’t buy our way out of the current and impending crises with the latest and greatest high-tech. We can’t buy our way out of it by simply replacing our old stuff with newer, “greener” stuff. That approach only assures that we will continue to experience the vicious circle of energy waste and dependence. I would argue, though, that we can save our way out of these problems,” writes Wilson.

    Using his own family’s retrofit of their 1942 home as a prime example, Wilson weaves a readable narrative at a practical, hammer-and-nail level. He presents the solutions to our building and energy problems, making them seem possible for average homeowners and small contractors by offering the right balance of information, skills, financing strategies, and materials.

    Technical information is presented in sidebars and graphs, and numerous color photos illustrate the process, including:

    • Testing the energy efficiency of your home and learning where improvements need to be made;
    • Dealing with local building codes and regulations;
    • Financing and paying for a DER;
    • Major components of the DER, such as roofs, exterior walls, basements, and whole house systems; and
    • Details of home-scale renewable energy options to complement the DER, including passive and active solar systems.

    Wilson’s building experience, along with his lifelong passion for energy issues, all come together to form an inspirational, can-do approach to making our community, our nation, and our world a better place—one home at a time.

    Item: 6668

    Author: Jeff Wilson

    Format: Paperback

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