Although it’s not your typical prefab, we found the level of design and approachable scale of this Canadian cabin to be irresistibly charming. The owners asked Toronto-based architecture firm Taylor-Smyth for a simple little escape, perfect for watching the sun set over Lake Simcoe, and spending evenings when their main house was filled to the brim with family and friends. What they received was a 275 sq-ft glass box delicately wrapped with a cedar plank screen.

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The entire structure was pre-assembled by cabinet makers and craftsmen in the parking lot of a commercial building in Toronto owned by the client. While the interior finishes are simply constructed of birch plywood, all of the wood used for exterior doors, windows, cladding & structure is made from cedar to address the obvious issues of durability. The cabin has several sustainable components, such as a composting toilet and a green roof; but what really differentiates this as “green building” is the attention paid to the pristine site: damage was kept to a minimum by re-assembling the building in just 10 days.

For Other works by Taylor-Smyth, visit their website:

All wood working was by Jaan Poldaas and the Dressler Brothers.

Photographs are courtesy of Ben Rahn/A-Frame Inc.