A coworker asked me to make some metal brackets for a porch awning they were building. It was my first time fabricating metal from a set of plans which meant that I had zero input into the design but…it meant the plan was very clear, very exact, which was nice too. Nothing fancy although drilling a 1″ hole in 1/4″ steel requires a bit of planning. #metalfab #handmade #locallymade #welding #structuralsteel
I needed to move the location of our existing pond so I hand dug a smaller pond in a different spot and used a pump I borrowed from my dad to pump most of the old pond water into the new pond. The rest of the water went to ours and the neighbors trees and landscaping, so very little was wasted. The old pond was fed from our gutters and so will the new one.
I ordered a new liner and used the rocks from the old pond to hide the liner and give it a more natural feel. I planted native ground cover and plants some of which came from our neighbors’ yards and some from our yard. To the right of the pond is a Fig tree and surrounding guild including Elderberry, Mint, and Daffodil. We were also able to move all the fish from the old pond, 10 little goldfish. #waterwise #reuse #pond #goldfish #permaculture #nativeplants
Last week I helped a neighbor build a greenhouse from reclaimed materials. The metal clad windows and old rough sawn 2×4’s were salvaged from remodeling projects in Portland. We spent a couple days framing up the structure and installing the windows, now he’ll finish it off by adding a corrugated roof and siding…and starts. #reuse #salvaged #permaculture #handmade #locallymade
When we set out to remodel the basement we had to get creative with the design and execution of the window wells. There are very few options these days. Building something with natural stone or rock has endless opportunities to add unique beauty but the price tag doesn’t really fit our budget. For our largest window, 6 feet wide, we found some stack-able concrete block down the street that a neighbor was selling, but for the other two windows out front we wanted to minimize the amount of soil we had to remove, make as little impact of the landscaping as possible, and add an interesting look. I thought of these steel boxes and then came up with the idea of adding little areas to insert native plants. The steel comes from a scrap yard in SE Portland, and the plants were mostly transplanted from places in our yard. I can get this steel in all sorts of shapes and sizes and can add pretty much anything to them, stairs, hand rails, a top ledge, more places to add plants, etc. It’s a durable product, one that ages nicely over time, and comes from 100% reused materials. #reuse #handmade #metal #permaculture #locallymade
During the past two years since our return to Portland, I have worked as a project manager and estimator for Lovett Deconstruction while working on the side to develop my own consulting, design, and fabrication business. With the current pandemic making a huge impact on our region I have been laid off from my work with Lovett. I am taking this time to hang out with my family, work on our own home improvement projects (like the bedroom cabinet I built pictured below) and reflect on the struggles our society faces when confronted with scenarios that put a real challenge on the distribution of goods and services. I’ve always considered myself and my family to be self sufficient and resilient, but the biggest challenge my family and the community of families around us face is the way in which we interface with our current infrastructure for goods and services. I’m very interested in helping to design and build self-sufficient systems in a home and yard that better enables you to weather episodes of total or partial infrastructure collapse, but also provides you and your family, during normal times,
the opportunity to be more self reliant, use less energy, and connect to nature. If you are interested in discussing ways you can increase your capacity to endure challenges such as the one we are currently facing I am offering a free 1 hour consult. There are many ways we can take the time to look at your potential projects and talk about ideas for making your place a more efficient and resilient home, while maintaining social distancing. Feel free to email or call 406-880-8240, be well. #locallymade #permaculture #makefood #growfood #handmade
After taking an urban permaculture design course during the winter we decided to put some of that knowledge to use planting plumb and cherry tree guilds and adding a water feature to attract birds and insects. The pond was already there luckily.
And since we knew we wanted to add larger windows to the basement we went ahead and dug out the openings, using the dirt to fill multiple raised bed boxes. #reuse #permaculture #handmade #locallymade #growfood
We moved back to Portland after nearly 25 years away and found a sweet little house just down the street from where we both grew up. We started in on the front yard, creating some pathways, mostly native gardens, fruit tree guilds, and I built a bench for resting. The two chairs and the rock are a great place to have a cool beverage on a hot day. #reuse #locallymade #handmade #permaculture
Aah, words cannot describe the joy of sharing one’s passions with the ones you love. Pictures will have to suffice. Location: 18 mile road trails just outside Fruita, CO.