Origami Coop / Chris Mullaney


Chris Mullaney shared with us a project he designed for his parent’s house in Stroud on a relatively small budget. Through working with form and construction and a chance to put academic work into practice, the Origami Coop sees the ubiquitous chicken coop as an opportunity for experiment. More images and Mullaney’s description after the break.

© Chris Mullaney

We set out to eliminate the framework found in a traditional build. Therefore we did a series of experiments with folding standard steel mesh. The resulting design is a self-supporting galvanized steel mesh coop that protects the chickens from foxes, snakes and other pests with a small plywood structure for the shelter and egg collection.

© Chris Mullaney
© Chris Mullaney

The coop currently houses 6 chickens but has been designed for a total of 10 to allow for expansion if required. The pivot door mechanism was a bespoke element designed to maintain the gates non-structural role. Lubricated steel discs provide lateral stability for the gate and double nuts allow for easy removal and re-greasing. Large back doors provide easy access for cleaning and the removal of plywood waste trays that are lined with straw to generate mulch for the adjacent vegetable gardens.

© Chris Mullaney

The brief also called for roll-away nesting boxes to simplify egg collection. Artificial turf is used on a shallow incline to facilitate the rolling of eggs. The collection trays employ galvanized steel mesh to cushion eggs and allow for easy inspection. Shade and rain protection is provided by a custom fly-roof made from folded aluminium flashing, designed to neatly interlock with the galvanized mesh structure.

© Chris Mullaney

The design draws inspiration from folding paper to create structure and material efficiency. Basic building components were reduced to single sheets of plywood and galvanized steel mesh and all construction is readily repeatable.

Designed By: Chris Mullaney
Location: Stroud,
Built By: Chris Mullaney, Matt Mullaney, Tim Mullaney, Nathan Moate
Project Year: 2011

Cite: Furuto, Alison. "Origami Coop / Chris Mullaney" 10 Mar 2012. ArchDaily. Accessed 25 May 2015. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=215329>
  • vlade

    nice little project

  • zxffd1 zxff

    this is so interesting!ha~

  • john

    bet he is really glad he spent 7 years training to do that

  • bLogHouse

    seeing the opportunity to make things better does not need training – either you have it or you don’t.

  • Rade Lalic

    U can make good architecture with a chicken barn too :D
    Good work!

    • bjarke ingels

      I can make architecture with only the chickens too ;)