Log cabins in the woods, log cabins by the lake, log cabins in the snow blown wilderness; there’s something about log cabins that evokes a sense of romance, safety, warm firesides, and a hard-working pioneer spirit – but it’s not just romance that makes log cabins the home of choice across the world.
Naturally, wood is practical. Logs are, or were, the most common building material on the planet; they literally grow on trees (that said, the grass is also inordinately common and makes a reasonably solid home but yet falls far lower in the popularity stakes). But that’s not the real reason for the popularity of wood.
1. Minimal carbon footprint
For example, New Zealand’s Lifestyle Cabins brand is built from timber harvested from sustainable forests – purpose-grown and replanted. The manufacturing process is far less harmful, in terms of energy consumption and release of harmful gases (emissions) and pollution, than conventional building materials.
According to research published in the Journal of Sustainable Forestry, “the greatest gains of both CO2 and fossil fuel (FF) savings in forest products are through avoiding FF needed to manufacture, transport, and construct with steel or concrete. With efficient product use and harvesting, more CO2 is saved in the avoided emissions, products, and wood energy than is lost instantaneously from the harvested forest.”
2. Natural insulation and low energy consumption
Wood, made up of hollow, air-filled cells, is a natural insulation material that keeps the interior cool during the day and warmer at night. Research reveals that wood is 400 times better than steel, 1700 times better than aluminum, and 15 times better than masonry when insulating a building from heat and cold.
The hygroscopic nature of wood – able to exchange moisture with the air – means it can protect against short-term changes in temperature and humidity. This hygroscopic quality of timber also means it accommodates better natural airflow, reducing the need for air purifiers and dehumidifiers (the manufacture and distribution of these machines come at an environmental cost).
The flexibility and versatility of wood allow it to be used to construct virtually any shape structure, but overall there’s no getting away from the aesthetics of wood – in short, it’s beautiful, durable, and evokes positive emotions. Representing a slower, quieter lifestyle, timber-built cabins make us feel closer to nature (not to mention the scent of wood, particularly when your cabin is new).
The versatility and aesthetics of timber cabins extend to your home. A quality cabin in the garden is as pleasant a feature as any, with the additional functionality of a home office, garden studio, or sleep out (gym, man cave, workshop – the potential is vast).
The oldest wooden structure in the world is Horyuji, a Japanese Temple constructed in 607 AD, making it more than 1,300 years old. It was also originally built from cypress trees that were about 2,000 years old at the time. There is some debate that a 7,200-year-old oak-lined water well unearthed in the Czech Republic may be the oldest wooden structure in the world. Regardless, you can count on your lifestyle cabin to last the test of time – with room to spare.
Our solid wood cabins are perfect solutions to create valuable spaces. If you need a home office, extra sleep-out, rental accommodation, business office, or simply a place to stay while you build your dream holiday home, consider having a solid wood cabin by us!