• PROJECTS TO GET YOU OFF THE GRID

    With Projects to Get You Off the Grid, the Instructables community of do-it-yourselfers have pooled their knowledge into a compact book focused on a series of projects that will get you thinking creatively about thinking green. This collection of 20 projects illustrate just how simple it can be to make your own backyard chicken coop, or turn a wine barrel into a rainwater collector.

    Item: 6917
  • COMPACT CABINS

    Compact Cabins presents 62 design interpretations of the getaway dream. Whether it be a small cabin on a sparkling lakefront, a breath-taking mountaintop, an expansive beach, or some other peaceful location, there is something here to please every taste. Best of all, these small-footprint designs are affordable and energy-efficient without skimping on comfort and style. The cabins range in size form a cozy 150 square feet to a more spacious but still economical 1,000 square feet, and all include sleeping accommodations, kitchen and bath facilities, and a heat source. Complete chapters on low-maintenance building materials, utilities and appliances, and alternative energy sources supply you with the options for living efficiently in small space.

    For every design, you will find floor plans with detailed suggestions for designing the space for optimal use. These plans are flexible: many feature modular elements that can be mixed and matched to accommodate your particular needs or hobbies. Features such as an outdoor fireplace, covered porch, or external storage locker might work nicely in several cabin designs. It's all about enhancing and maximizing small spaces to your individual needs and preferences.

    • Need plenty of sleeping space for visiting friends and family? Jean's Run Cabin sleeps six in 501 square feet.
    • Do you own a shallow plot on a beautiful lake? Glass House Cabin offers terrific views, a large deck, and a wide-frontage floor plan.
    • Is your priority a romantic getaway? A Cabin for Two features a fireplace, a spa tub, and a cozy sleeping nook.
    • Love hosting parties? Clerestory Cabin with Dining Room has a dedicated dining space right next to the porch, which is perfect for cocktails or coffee.

    In this time of uncertain energy costs, global warming, and tighter budgets, building small is a very appealing idea. Gerald Rowan shows you how to achieve your cabin dreams on a small footprint.

    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 to readers. For 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: 4436
  • HOW TO BUILD AN UNDERGROUND HOUSE

    You can build an underground home or earth sheltered house with this guide and plans from underground building authority Malcom Wells.

    Item: 632
  • LIVING OFF THE GRID

    In daily life, we can take control of the resources and services we depend on. Electricity and energy don’t have to come off the public utility grid—alternatives abound in solar, wind, and water generated power. Design decisions can drastically affect power consumption, and bio-diesel and alternative fuels can help break the oil habit. Dave Black describes alternatives for eco-pimping your home and lifestyle for independence, economy, and a more integrated way of life. Equally valuable for the urban dweller vaguely concerned about the size of his or her carbon footprint and the rural self-sufficiency enthusiast, Living Off the Grid can help anyone take control of his or her life and way of living.

    Item: 8546
  • 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
  • MICROSHELTERS

    Created by a wide array of builders and designers around the United States and beyond, these 59 unique and innovative structures show you the limits of what is possible. Each is displayed in full-color photographs accompanied by commentary by author Derek “Deek”Diedricksen . In addition, Diedricksen includes six sets of building plans by leading designers to help you get started on a microshelter of your own. You’ll also find guidelines on building with recycled and salvaged materials, plus techniques for making your small space comfortable and easy to inhabit.

    Item: 7812
  • MUDGIRLS MANIFESTO: HANDBUILT HOMES, HANDCRAFTED LIVES

    On North America's West Coast, there's a group of rebel women who 10 years ago chose to break free from a rigged economic and social system. They didn't take to the streets to lobby banks and governments to change their ways – they didn't have time for that. They had babies to feed and house. They reckoned that if nobody else was going to change the rules to support basic human needs and respect the biosphere, then we were all free to make our own rules.

    They chose action. They decided to teach themselves how to build houses using the most abundant material on earth – mud. They'd learn by building, gathering skills and allies. They'd have fun, sharing whatever they learned with whoever wanted to come along for the ride. The Mudgirls revolution was born.

    Item: 8922
  • 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
  • THE WATER-WISE HOME

    Are you looking for ways to save water -- or money? This accessible guide by Laura Allen, founder of Greywater Action, explains how to use water smartly and efficiently, increasing supply, saving money, reducing wear on your septic system, and fulfilling your home and garden needs. She describes proven conservation techniques, explains how to create a water-wise landscape, and provides illustrated, step-by-step instructions for setting up a waterless composting toilet as well as systems to reuse greywater, harvest rainwater, and more.

    Item: 7608

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