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TreeHouse Workshop | ColorMute

TreeHouse Workshop

Photos Courtesy of TreeHouse Workshop

Not just for kids, Seattle based team, TreeHouse Workshop, build modern tree houses for families, children, business’ and eccentrics. As a child I had a treehouse which was my personal escape, my fortress of solitude, my dream theater, my outpost from reality. Tree houses’ still represent an escape from convention, an elevated outlook upon the natural world that connects us in a way we otherwise would find impossible. TreeHouse Workshop design custom houses around the U.S., finding a niche audience all looking for a little peace of mind in a place long forgotten both in childhood and humanity.

Those of us lucky enough to have or own home in the high branches remember watching dad crack a 6 pack, curse dutifully and spend a few weekends ambling back and forth from the garage to some half assed death box dangling 20 feet from an unsturdy poplar.  THW are professionals through and through, offering consulting, design or a start to finish product customized to your own needs and specifications.  They’ve made elevated getaways for families, a specialty perch for Longwood Gardens, and a childs play house complete with 3 story spiral slide.  There work takes cues from Greene and Greene, landmark arts and craft style architechts employing old work joints, splays and braces.  THW makes use of a forgotten trade, their houses are at once iconic modern marvels and a throw back to stilted roofs, cathedral windows and a craftsmanship few remember when wood was king long before steel or concrete.

All their work is done by hand and has its own innate risks since it is all done some feet above ground.  Their team even offers workshops to pass on the skill sets to others looking to broaden their own knowledge.  A 3 day workshop runs around a $1,000 (lodging and food included w/ complimentary hard hat).  On average THW build 10 to 15 tree houses a year, about half locally. The tree houses range from 100 square feet to 1,000, and cost from $6,000 on the low end to $330,000-plus for top-of-the-line models.  Most tree houses take several weeks to complete while larger scale productions run into several months.  In order to fit each tree house into it’s own location many of the materials are recycled from dead or felled trees found on location.  The art is as much in the design of the house as it is in blending it into it’s unique environment.

THW gallery of completed projects is impressive, check it out their full catalogue here.  It heartens me to know that this sort of work is being done and that there are those of us out there that regardless of age still want to climb up a tree and escape the passing world.

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