The Pierre House, Carved Into a Rock

July 28th, 2014

Oh, I get it. It’s the Pierre House and it’s built into a rock. Pierre or Peter means “rock.” Olsun Kundig Architects built the house first by deeply carving into the rock. Alexandra Belgun’s tour and commentary of the house covers important details, and along with gorgeous photos has a floor plan.
See Homedit

The Budget: Old Order Amish Media

July 28th, 2014

By Tobin Dimmitt
If you live near Amish country, you might want to pick up a few copies of Die Botschaft, an Amish newspaper. The paper is filled with local, relevant news, often good news. It is written by Old Order Amish around North America.
Often, your conventional newspaper is filled with bizarre and violent stories, only covering good news when somebody has made an exceptional achievement.
Die Botschaft is different. It is relatable for its audience. Often articles are extremely personal, crowdsourcing good deeds for a community member in need.
I think differences between mainstream American society and Old Order Amish culture are what cause us to publish such different papers. Mainstream culture emphasizes the differences between people. For one thing, people have the mistaken belief that in order to start a paper, you have to be rich. In order to make enough profit, you have to reach gazillions of readers; that means you have to be able to afford to print gazillions of papers. Some rich people decided for us that most Americans would only want to read bizarre stories by hyper-educated reporters, again emphasizing educational differences as well as monetary ones. To a large paper, readers and advertisers are little more than revenue-generating units.
On the other hand, Amish society does not have such extremes. There are Amish differences of income and education (check out this expensive buggy, which still does not rival the prices of our expensive cars), but these do not create massive cultural gaps; nor does anyone have proportionately enough to dominate the media. Actually, Die Botschaft has some contributions that reveal a lack of education… in English grammar. Frankly, Old Order Amish society doesn’t need to value English grammar the way we do, and they’re doing just fine at the community, sustainability and Biblical values they hold more dear.
Amish publishing understands its readers and sees its writers in a human context. Mainstream American publishing has gotten so out of reach, many people are running to the World Wide Web to renew that humanity in their own blogs and communities.
A summary of a recent Die Botschaft edition is at Not Quite Amish.

DIY Floating Corner Shelves

July 24th, 2014

A Beautiful Mess has a tutorial on how to make your own floating corner shelves. Floating wall shelves have a clean, contemporary look. The lack of brackets helps keep small spaces from feeling smaller. You can match your shelves to your walls to keep your room as open as possible or you can add a little geometry to your room with colored shelves. And of course, using your vertical space prevents household clutter. So let Josh and Sarah Rhodes teach you how to make your own floating wall shelving.
It’s beautiful.

Planing Competition Video, Japan

July 22nd, 2014


It seems like whenever Japanese folk get together and do something, they push it to supreme excellence. In this case, some Japanese woodworkers have become amazing planers. It makes sense after having listened to Shop Talk Live Episode 63, which covers a few ways in which a Japanese woodshop uses fewer tools and space than a Western one, so each skill gains extra value. Watch this Kezuroukai planing competition video to see shavings so thin they are somewhat transparent.

This Amish Buggy Is Worth Over $9000

July 22nd, 2014

… And it’s shiny. It comes with a matching $1600 horse. The $9861.18 buggy, from Country Lane Coach Shop of Paradise, Pennsylvania, is the version with all the options; the bare bones version only costs $6895. Jerry sent photos of the buggy to Amish America after visiting an auction in Perry County.
Check out that dashboard.

High School Woodworking Program VS Youth Unemployment… GO!

July 21st, 2014

I don’t know how we did it, but somehow America has managed to create a demand for skilled tradespeople while preventing young people from learning the trades. Not Dean Mattson, though. Not only does Mattson’s wood manufacturing program teach woodworking skills, but it makes sure students graduate from high school into promising careers.
Click to watch Mark Till’s inspirational video on Mattson’s class.
Read Robert W. Lang’s point of view at Popular Woodworking.

Homedit’s Exclusive Montana Labelle Interview

July 21st, 2014

Homedit has something special for you: an exclusive interview with Toronto designer Montana Labelle, and a tour of her own small condo. Labelle loves incorporating fashion into her designs, but I see tons of style in her use of classic furniture and bold colors. It’s also a great inspiration for you small space decorators. Thanks goes to interviewer Alexandra Belgun.
Go to Toronto!

“/” Lamp (Pronounced Slash Lamp) is Made to Be Broken

July 21st, 2014


Dragos Motica of Ubikubi has designed a lamp with a cage and concrete shade so that the owner may break the concrete to their desired shape. The “/” lamp questions the definition of design not only by creating a piece that is simplistic at first glance but by letting the user participate. Looks like fun.
Source at Dezeen

Obviously Amish Photos

July 21st, 2014

Good morning. Kevin, the Amish Cook, has gathered some Amish photos for your adventuring pleasure. All of them are distinctly Plain. However the last one, of the woodburned sign, reveals the wit and wisdom that grows in a person living the minimal Plain lifestyle.
Click to horse around a bit.

Houzz Tour: New Twists for a Traditional New York Saltbox (15 photos)

July 18th, 2014


Houzz has a tour of a saltbox style home created by Stephen Moser for his sister’s family. The Shelter Island, New York home is fresh and contemporary inside and out. Of special interest is the Alaskan yellow cedar siding, which is resilient without requiring charring. Also check out the rubber roof.
Tour the Houzz.