Scavenger Studio

Photography by Benjamin Benschneider


The title implies it all, really. In addition to being an architectural feast for the eyes, this two-story studio situated in the woods in rural Washington state is a prime example of how scavenging used materials can truly be a treasure hunt—great for both the environment as well as for the wallet.

The 693-square-foot studio is designed by Les Eerkes of Eerkes Architects for film director and activist Anna Hoover. Due to a tight budget, Scavenger Studio was built using as much free-cycled material as possible. By salvaging materials from homes slated to be demolished, the studio now consist of reused materials such as plywood cladding, a peephole window, wooden stair treads, plants, a wood-burning stove and kitchen cabinets. To further cut construction costs, the entire structure rests on six simple concrete foundations, enabling the studio leave a literary light footprint on the land.

As for the interior, the kitchen and living room area occupies the ground level, while the sleeping loft is above. A panel next to the bed drops down, opening the room to the green woods surrounding the compound, which suitably blends with the structure’s construction materials. The black plywood facade was charred by the owner using a Japanese technique called shou sugi ban which preserves the wood while at the same time creates a colour palette which naturally resonates with its surroundings.

Les Eerkes designed the studio while working as a design principle at architecture studio Olson Kundig, which was the architect of record.