Backyard Living: The Scoop on Chicken Coops

Forget designer duds and furnishings… the hottest must-have is of the avian character. Whether you are residing in the nation or shacking up from town, it might be possible for you to get a chick or two (or six) in a chicken coop of your own. It’s crucial to check zoning laws before buying chickens, but it is surprisingly feasible to raise hens (though generally not early-crowing roosters) in a small yard. Having a more compact space, there is a need to be fastidiously clean in caring for your birds, but the benefits are worth it.

New eggs, soothing clucks, free fertilizer and recycling machines are a few of the advantages you can expect with cows. The most important matter of business before buying your own buds, however, is to build a coop.

Amy Renea

Coops are available in a variety of shapes and sizes, from luxury accommodations to the bare minimum. You are able to purchase a prebuilt coop for a few hundred bucks or make your own with scrap wood and chicken wire. There are coops built specifically for smaller spaces and poultry”tractors” you are able to wheel around the lawn to fertilize a variety of sections. Our coop was built onto the side of an present shed.

Amy Renea

There’s nothing quite like the chirping of baby girls waking you up in the daytime. Chicks will need to stay warm, so educate yourself on the maintenance of girls prior to taking charge of these little lives. In the early days they’re placed indoors (a cardboard box operates at this stage ) with a heating lamp. Just a little food, water and paper, and your girls will spend joyful days lugging around and sleeping in their cage.

You can buy chicks in the local feed store or attempt an internet site like this Hatchery for rare breeds sent to your home when they are one day old.

Amy Renea

Before you know it, those sweet little chicks quickly become full-feathered cows complete with dust and chicken poop. You will not want these creatures inside your house after this stage, so a home is a must.

Amy Renea

Whether your zoning is custom made, catalog ordered or homemade, there are a couple of mandatory components. First is safety. Chicken cable is a must, and it should protect every surface of the coop. Chicken wire also needs to cover the ground of the coop if it rests on property. Raccoons would think nothing of digging a tunnel under the coop and gobbling up your cows.

You’ll be able to see another edition of this basic design at Natalme from Natalie Wright. For more photographs, coop plans and information on raising chickens in urban areas, check out

Amy Renea

Hens will start laying eggs around six months old, so getting laying boxes up early is good practice. When the cows begin layingthey prefer to lay in precisely the exact same region, so you would like to train them to lay their eggs where it is convenient for you to collect them.

Amy Renea

These placing boxes are situated directly across in the full size (chicken-wire covered) door for simple access. The bottom of the coop is lined with hay and grass.

Amy Renea

Chickens have a tendency to go to the maximum place to roost, so provide ladders and enclosed space for them to maneuver. This space is lined with wood shavings, but hay, hay and dry grass also work well.

Amy Renea

If your chickens aren’t allowed to roam during the day, they will need dirt bathrooms. A dirt bathtub is simply a box of dirt with a little sand mixed in. The birds roll in the dirt to wash themselves; without it, pests can be an irritant.

Karen puts a dirt bath in a bathtub for her chickies. Check out her incredible designer chicken coop in The Art of Doing Materials .

Amy Renea

Whether you choose to attack the building of a coop yourself or buy a premade model, make sure that your hens are secure, with room to roost and place, bedding plus a dirt bath. It requires a bit of work, however the benefits of cows conducting their two-legged wobble across the lawn and placing fresh eggs each morning is well worth the effort.

Inform us: Can you keep cows? Share a photograph of your backyard chicken coop below.

More: Chicken coops and coop-inspired home Solutions

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A New Community Flourishes at Rhode Island

As you read this, a 250-KW wind mill is being constructed to provide 85% of the power use of the affordable housing project. Designed by Union Studio Architecture & Community Design in Tiverton, Rhode Island, the 170-acre community has been designed with agriculture and artists in mind.

The rural character and customs of farming in Tiverton — a big part of the community — has been honored in its design. Along with setting aside much of the land within an agricultural preserve, the neighborhood has its own designated place for gardening.

50 cheap rental units and 24 single-family market-rate houses compose the Sandywoods Farm community. It also includes an agricultural preserve that will stay a working farm, with a resident farmer. Half of the renters chosen are working half and artists were chosen via the conventional need-based selection process.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

“The neighborhood has been far more active than expected from the get-go,” says principle architect Douglas Kallfelz. “They really found the right mix of individuals and resulting energy to make this a vibrant and active location.”

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Open area surrounds the community, because of agricultural and open-space preserves and land trusts.

This type of project is often hard to get through city boards due to setback and zoning requirements, but”we had a good deal of leeway with this endeavor because of their Affordable Housing conduit, and as the website was somewhat isolated from acquaintances,” states Kallfelz.

The former presented a opportunity to cluster housing in an ecologically-sensitive manner, although the latter presented the challenge of creating a community that would intersect well with greater Tiverton.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

“The community garden has taken on a life of its own and is conducted by the residents,” Kellfelz states. Instead of the typical subdivided plots one sees in neighborhood gardens, this one is collective with large beds for different vegetables, and a separate children’s garden. Everyone participate in tending it. The residents recently won a nationwide contest for a free fruit orchard in Your Fruit Tree Planning Foundation.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Aspects of New Urbanism, such as walkability and front-porch civilization, are a part of the project. And additionally like New Urbanism, it had been motivated by Old Urbanism, otherwise referred to as the New England village. “The project is very derivative of traditional neighborhood plans in New England,” states Kellfelz.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

“Another aspect we borrowed from the traditional New England village is the homes have a strong street edge,” he states.

Front porches have constantly added a sense of community and strengthened interaction between neighbors.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

“The design is a brand new spin on Tiverton’s classic farm typology,” explains Kellfelz. The buildings provide a nod to nearby precedents but have upgraded details and overall aesthetic, which incorporates many sustainable elements.

This includes fantastic energy efficiency. Along with the wind turbines as a source of 85% of their houses’ power, the houses incorporate high-efficiency heat pumps, cellulose insulation, double-hung low-e windows, Energy Star lighting fixtures and fixtures, and passive solar power and porches.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Sustainable materials used in construction include Tecton fiberglass pre-finished siding, and this is partially recycled, as well as quickly renewable bamboo flooring.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

The growth’s plans protect open space and natural systems while improving life for its inhabitants, supplying beautiful spaces for residents to walk, picnic and play.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

The developer helped foster a sense of community by choosing an Americorps volunteer to arrange and shepherd arts and agriculture applications, run meetings and strategy events. These include art exhibitions, performances and a produce market (with plants from the neighborhood garden) in the neighborhood”Grange Hall.”

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

“The developer wanted a true community building to provide an intersection between this community and the rest of Tiverton,” states Kallfelz. “They did not want it to be segregated, and that Grange Hall-inspired building provides a location for events, the arts, a produce market and a meeting area ”

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

All kinds of events happen in the Grange Hall, such as art displays, a market for the community’s create and also a recent ballet performance of The Nutcracker.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

“The Grange Hall initially had weathervanes on both cupolas, before a farmer told me us that no self-respecting farmer would ever have two weathervanes,” states Kallfelz.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

The new community hasn’t only attracted individuals from the rest of Tiverton to become a part of it, it has also drawn developments around it. The city recently fixed up what were derelict ballfields adjacent to the website, which are currently connected to the community via walking paths. Additionally, the new city library has been assembled in the entrance to the area (it is also being built by Union Studio Architects).

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Project Tour: New Urbanism in Colorado
The Concord Green Healthy House
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Get Organized: Rethink the Silverware Drawer

If you’re anything like me, a silverware drawer divider does not seem to help me keep my utensils any more organized than when I’d chucked them carelessly in the drawer. Somehow, no drawer divider is ever big enough; spoons slip into the knife spot; or the corn-on-the-cob holders start infiltrating every single slot. Rather than having to kind and re-organize things every time you empty the dishwasher, try one of those tricks to keep your silverware stay neat and tidy.

More thoughts to your kitchen drawers

Jennifer Grey Interiors Design & Color Specialist

One idea we’ve noticed on is your choice to keep a little set of silverware on the counter in a vertical planner or adorable ceramic cups. If you’re like most people, you likely use the same few pieces daily. This keeps them right at hand, instead of muddled in your drawer, and motivates you to keep them organized.

Cameo Kitchens, Inc..

A fantastic custom made solution for those updating their kitchen would be a habit two-tiered drawer organizer. The top tier can be used for your own silverware and utensils that you use regularly, whereas nicer and lesser-used bits can be saved below. This keeps your silverware neat, and conserves on drawer space too.

Two-Tier Flatware Organizer

There also are lots of two-tiered silverware organizers in numerous sizes to fit your drawers best. This plastic model is a less expensive version of the customized option from the last photograph.

Tell us What is your best silverware organizing suggestion?

More: 12 Great Ideas for Organizing From the Kitchen
House Planning: How to Establish Your Own Kitchen
10 Steps to Organizing Kitchen Cabinets

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Old School Green Design: Add Texture With Grass

Grasses can work as a hedge, focal plants, textural components in a walkway or amazing contrasts to existing structures. There are a plethora of grasses to choose from, some perennial and some annual, from purple to pink to white.

When designing plants, colour and form would be the extreme considerations, after climate and growing conditions. Get inspired for a patch of planting grasses to your own lawn from the range of textures and colour in these gardens.

Browse photographs of landscape designs

Randy Thueme Design Inc. – Landscape Architecture

Ornamental grasses are a somewhat acquired taste, and not everyone is a fan. However, they are a beautiful supply of texture in the garden and offer a wide range of choices. Even if you don’t like ornamental grasses, how could you not run your fingers along the borders of this Japanese silver grass as you walk this route?

Debora carl landscape layout

This seat appears to be perfectly situated in a field of waving grass. Afloat in a field of wispiness, the strong lines of this seat contrast nicely.

Kathleen Shaeffer Design, Exterior Spaces

Situating more powerful plantings in the middle of a field of grass provides the illusion of floating trees. When the wind blows, the blossoms dance around the tree trunks, tickling their feet.

Zack|de Vito Architecture + Construction

Here, blossoms are planted in rings of colour with a lighter Mexican feather grass on the interior along with a deeper green on the outside. Situated in the bottom of a long stairway, the blossoms look like a pool of water rippling in the breeze.

Blasen Landscape Architecture

In this instance, the extended plumes bending under their own weight evoke the expression of a horse’s mane and just beg to be touched! The curved line of the grasses is an superb contrast to the right, bold lines of this building behind.

The Garden Consultants, Inc..

This building’s layout also contrasts with the surrounding plantings of blossoms. The sharp lines are lightened from the waving grasses along with also the curved canopy of the trees.

Christopher Yates Landscape Architecture

Forgoing a yard for a planting of short decorative grasses is an fantastic way to keep up a horizontal plane of green with no weekly maintenance. Some decorative grasses are strong enough to walk on, so research before you buy based on your activity requirements.

Arterra Landscape Architects

Situating a clump of decorative grass and also a pathway is a wonderful way to experience the texture of their stalks along with the plume. Allowing the grasses to lean into a walkway provides the walker a much more visceral experience. Just be careful which grasses you choose. Some can have quite sharp blades and wouldn’t be fine to walk near!

Shirley Bovshow

Some of my favorite ornamental grasses would be the pink pampas and switchgrasses. The bright, wispy plumes of pink shout girlishness with no high maintenance of roses and delphiniums.

Before you purchase grass plants or seed, make sure to check your state’s invasive plant listings. Some decorative grasses are considered noxious weeds in certain areas of the nation.

Grounded – Richard Risner RLA, ASLA

Grasses can work as a hedge, focal plants, textural components in a walkway or amazing contrasts to existing structures. There are a plethora of grasses to choose from, some perennial and some annual, from purple to pink to white. When making your choices, be sure to think about climate, maintenance and developing conditions and avoid species which can be invasive in your area.

What types of decorative grasses have you got on your landscape?

More: Feather Reed Grass

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Great Print: Decorating with Damask

Conventional damask textiles were woven to create a weathered design characterized by a backdrop of sheen fabric with raised designs. Today damask designs come in a range of daring, high-contrast colors on everything from rugs and tiles to floral background, painted stencils and fashion runways. Read on for ways to go soft or bold using this frilly pattern today.

Niche Interiors

The daring damask wallpaper employed in this bedroom finishes a rock-chic vibe when paired with fashion-forward colors like fuchsia and olive green. Pairing it with mirrored furniture finishes this electrical look.

RLH Studio

Just take this tendency anywhere, from your dining room to your bathroom. It’s difficult to go wrong wallpapering a bathroom, since you’ve got minimal furniture and accessories to match.

Dillard Pierce Design Associates

If you presently have a room with a great deal of shades and patterns, then elect for a pale damask with two similar tones like beige and white. This barely-there white and cream print functions nicely with a checkered floor without looking too busy.

Carol Vaughan-Davis

Silver and white background with plain dining chairs and furniture produces a clean canvas for any time annually. Insert a few festive pops of red and a green centerpiece will transform this room for Christmas.

Stencils supply a similar style for less price. Not only are the stencils reusable, but are also a terrific way to create a custom look in home with unlimited color combinations.

Try a daring damask in vibrant colors to create a statement, or a more neutral palette for a more elegant look.

Janna Makaeva/Cutting Edge Stencils

Damask Rose Stencil – $40

A hot-pink accent wall functions well when paired with a matching pink couch. A couple of silver toss cushions and matching candle holders as accessories will complete a festive look for the holidays.

You’ll be able to get this amazing damask stencil at Cutting Edge Stencils, a firm that specifically focuses in decorative painting and stenciling.


Stenciling damask takes some practice and can be time consuming. Finishing one wall as an accent wall in stunning colors like this black and gold could be plenty for a single room. Check it out with a single wall and find out how you like it.

Fabulous Finishes Inc

Just a little damask can go a very long way; too much can appear overwhelming.

Wallpapering half a wall above a chair rail or wainscoting could be only the amount you need.


To give a timeless print a contemporary twist, opt for using a damask pattern in electrical colors, like this eye-popping blue and green. Keep the rest of your house neutral to avoid competition between furniture and walls.

This color makes a fantastic selection for spaces with minimal furniture, such as hallway or bathroom that needs something spectacular to bring it into life.

Graham & Brown

Desire Dark Green Damask

For just #25 a roster, this dark green damask can make an amazing statement in your property.

The Dazzle and Blend of Damask Decor

10 Different Ways to Use Wallpaper

14 Ways to Take Advantage of Your Wallpaper

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Lofty Living in the Heart of the Randstad

On a few of the most renowned shopping streets in town of The Hague stays this top-floor flat in three-story building dating back to the early 1800s. Its inside is a cozy blend of traditional and East Asian styles, with loads of diverse charm. With a subtle colour scheme and well-placed furniture, this loft-style apartment is a balanced composition of both new and old.

Owner Peter Blom is located in Switzerland and visits his home in The Hague a few times a year. While it was heavily under construction, the property was bought by him from 2004. His prior home was a large property in rural Utrecht, and he was looking to buy something less isolated. He was instantly attracted to The Hague for its upscale yet quiet way of life. The building also houses a store on the ground floor and an apartment on the second floor.

in a Glance
Who lives here: Peter Blom
Location: The Hague, South Holland
Size: 130 sq.-meter, 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, living/dining room, kitchen, office, rooftop terrace.

Holly Marder

The exposed wood beams are an original feature of the house and give the room a critical wow factor. Not only can they radically increase the size of their room, they also allow ample light to enter through the large placed windows looking out on the rooftop terrace. Painted at a coat of black, the beams tie in beautifully with the neutral palette of this room, working especially well with bits Blom bought from Asia.

Holly Marder

The apartment looks out on the Denneweg, one of the oldest streets at The Hague. The first building in the road dates back to 1390, once the street sported wooden houses that ran all the way to the North Sea.

Today, the Denneweg is in the heart of The Hague’s shopping scene, even while being one of the last truly upscale areas from the”Randstad” (the region encompassing the major Dutch cities of Amsterdam, Utrecht, Rotterdam and The Hague), and boasts beautiful houses and boutiques.

Holly Marder

Blom had the furnishings for years; things were picked up by him in China on a business trip. The mix of traditional furnishings and Asian accents, as well as several parts of quirky art, make this home an eclectic treat for the senses.

Holly Marder

Nothing about this apartment’s interior has been designed in any particular way with any particular purpose; the things are both old and fresh yet harmonize perfectly with one another. “What is significant is that it fits together, but naturally, that’s an issue of taste,” Peter says.

Holly Marder

The flat has been dotted with interesting art pieces, from quirky to more traditional fashion oil paintings, to bronze decorations and vintage world maps. The art comes from all over the area, but one artist, Ronald Habraken, is featured several times through the house. Habraken has been commissioned by the owner to paint some 30 paintings through the years, many of which are now in the operator’s home in Switzerland. Though the works aren’t all in the exact same manner, the artist’s distinctive flair is clearly identifiable. When asked about his preference for this particular artist’s creations,” Peter said,”I like paintings in the design of Corneille and Herman Brood.” That is evident when looking at the modern, imaginative functions that enhance the flat’s diverse feel. “It is more important to me that I am touched by [the art] than when it is by a renowned artist.”

Holly Marder

The vintage map prints featured in the dining room area are of places that the proprietor has lived, such as Switzerland, South America and Utrecht. “Maps always have to have a meaning for me. I really don’t just buy maps,” Blom says.

Holly Marder

In the lounge area, two sizeable beige linen arm chairs placed side by side are paired together with the caramel-hued leather sofa. The coffee table, using its Asian-style legs, injects a Far-Eastern feel into an otherwise traditional distance.

Holly Marder

Blom bought the little assortment of eyeglasses beside the IKEA bookcase roughly 40 years ago. The large oil painting of Amsterdam, was bought some 20 years ago. These cherished things add historical appeal to the home.

Holly Marder

Perhaps Blom’s favorite piece of art is that the large bronze hen by Peter Peterson. The artist draws his inspiration from the surrounding character, often using typical Dutch creatures as models. This chicken was fashioned for the homeowner.

Holly Marder

The ladder at the center of the living room leads up to a tiny attic study nook overlooking the flat’s living area and the Denneweg below. During the construction, Blom asked the builders to put a window at the slanted ceiling to permit light to input and views of The Hague to be seen. While the analysis is at the primary area of the house, it’s surprisingly private.

Holly Marder

The small kitchen features marble counters atop white matte doorways, although small, has ample storage area — not to mention amazing views on the fashionable Denneweg below.

Holly Marder

The building right opposite the flat dates back to 1898. It is a 3-story exclusive fashion boutique, and undoubtedly one of the most attractive buildings on the road.

Holly Marder

The hallway seems to zigzag its way from the entrance all the way to the bedroomdown the front end of the flat. The hallway is adorned with more art by Ronald Habraken.

Holly Marder

This freestanding cabinet in Blom’s bedroom is just another item he discovered in Asia. “I started at Hong Kong and finished up in Beijing, and somewhere along the way I bought some bits to return to the Netherlands,” he says. This bit sets the scene at the master bedroom.

Holly Marder

The black fold-out chairs with cane seats increase the Asian feel and tie in nicely with the rest of the area’s d├ęcor, as does the cane chest at the base of their mattress.

Holly Marder

In the hallway, a varnished wooden staircase winds up to the rooftop terrace. The terrace, formerly the roof itself, has been divided to create a quiet outdoor distance away from the hustle and bustle of the city below. The door to the left leads into a huge storage area, and the big windows to the right look directly into the living area below.

Holly Marder

Though the terrace is practically unused because of the cool weather and the operator’s absence for most of the season, it has enormous potential to become a great spot for hosting late-night soirees at the summer months and also get-togethers year round. Plonk a brazier down, decorate seats with comfy cushions and spend a romantic night gazing up at the stars…

Though Blom is away out of his inner city flat for the majority of the season, he really enjoys returning to it. “I really like the high ceilings, the simple fact that it is rather spacious, the roof terrace, the storage and I love that it is at the center of the nicest aspect of The Hague.”

More Tours:
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Sexy Chocolate Rooms: A Rich and Sweet Color Palette

I’ve a friend who is addicted to the hot chocolate in my local diner. She calls it”creamy relaxation in a cup” I agree, but want to save my calories and appreciate it like a decorating scheme for your home.

Deep shades of browns and creamy whites feel wealthy when blended together. Whether you like your hot chocolate bold and rich or creamy and sweet, these spaces will fill you with delight!

Judith Balis Interiors

Has anyone attempted to lick these walls? They look yummy. The space will get warmth out of the walls along with also the island cabinetry, yet still feels airy and bright through the different shades of white used during. To get this look, begin with replacing heavy window treatments with white wood blinds to bring in the natural light. Next, maintain the ceiling white, and install lots of lighting overhead as well as table and floor lamps with white shades. Add accessories that are reflective such as mirrors. Finally, keep art light by ensuring it’s a lot of white in it, and use white mats when framing.

Sherwin-williams Paint Store – Bismarck

SW6047 Hot Cocoa by Sherwin-Williams

I wish this Sherwin William Hot Cocoa paint came with a scratchn’ sniff option. I would use it on all of my walls!

Tracery Interiors

When painting walls a heavy brown is a lot of color for you, keep it creamy on the exterior and chocolaty at the middle! It is still possible to receive your hot chocolate try a cream colour reminiscent of a marshmallow on the partitions, then coating brown pieces through fabric and upholstery. Insert brown banding to drapes and brown noodle into your pillows for additional chocolate bits; produce a steaming cup of warmth all around you.

Shoshana Gosselin

SW6077 Everyday White by Sherwin-Williams

For creamy walls attempt this Everyday White paint from Sherwin Williams. When used with rich brown fabric and upholstery, it’s dreamy.

Rug Studio

Chandra Thomas Paul – Tufted Pile Coral Brown-Cream CBC Area Rug – $351

Bring deep browns into a room with walls that are creamy. This coral rug provides a snug feeling beneath your feet, along with also the white fibers during make it bold, lively, and fun.

Ballard Designs

Firenze Embroidered Panel Curtain – $179

This white and chocolate embroidered curtain is mild yet brings in brown.

Jayson Home

Enid Table Lamp – $650

Carry the hot chocolate theme to your lighting using a lamp similar to this. It is tall enough to let light and the chocolate shade creates a soft glow.

Marie Burgos Design

Wish to sweeten your guest’s stay with some hot chocolate? Create a swirl of browns and whites in your guest room. Deep brown on the walls together with a white duvet and white-shaded table lamps makes this room very inviting.

Benjamin Moore

Middlebury Brown HC-68 by Benjamin Moore

Middlebury Brown from Benjamin Moore is reminiscent of Italian cocoa. Tip: Whichever shade of brown you chose, test it first using a tester kit or buy a quart.

Design Shop Interiors

In spaces that open to each other, neutral creamy vanilla partitions maintain the whole area connected and bright. The chocolate accent wall is a visual element that separates the various places. Warm browns along with whites and creams create comfy, separate-yet-open spaces within the open floor plan.

Globus Builder

On the lookout for a bathroom palette that is timeless, clean, and reminiscent of a steaming cup of cocoa with whipped cream? Start with a bold espresso stain on the cabinetry and mirror frame, choose an oil bronze finish for the taps, put in a creamy counter top, and finally, choose tiles which mix in each the aforementioned.

Silestone USA

Tigris Sand Silestone

This is a wonderful soft look for a counter top paired with ebony finished cabinetry.

Shoshana Gosselin

Lush 1×2 Frosted Blend Stockholm

This glass tile can pick up on any browns when used in a bathroom or kitchen.

More: Research Color Combinations
Beige to Almost Dark: How to Pick the Right Brown
Warm and Contemporary

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