A clever skin camouflages this off-grid Thoreau cabin in the Netherlands. Designed by Amsterdam-based CC-Studio, the small retreat doubles as a storage space for gardening tools and maintenance equipment. Hidden in the forest just outside of Utrecht, the building replaces an old cottage and features two large sliding doors that transform the warm escape into a breezy space that blends effortless into its natural surroundings.
The 35-square-meter dwelling enveloped in aluminum has been designed so its presence can be perceived only from a short distance. There is no running water or electricity in the cabin and local wood is used for cooking and to fire up the fireplace. A small storage, washroom and a larger general space with a stove and chimney sculpture were included in the interior and present the heart of the cabin that supports the folding aluminum-clad roof structure.
The two large sliding doors can be opened during summer, forming a generous protective canopy that blurs the line between the inside and the outside. This merging of the interior and the surrounding open space is strengthened through the use of wooden panels that adorn the interior walls.
Photos by John Lewis Marshall