Vashon Cabin / Vandeventer + Carlander Architects

© Ben Benschneider

Architects: Vandeventer + Carlander Architects
Location: Vashon Island, Washington, USA
Structural Engineer: Swenson Say Faget
Landscape Architects: David Berleth Landscape Architect
Contractor: McIntyre Construction Services Inc.
Floor Area: 1,848 sq ft
Project Year: 2009
Photographs: Ben Benschneider

© Ben Benschneider

This project consists of the remodel of an existing one story cabin with a daylight basement. Given tight site development restrictions resulting from an existing drain field, it was not possible to increase the existing cabin’s lot coverage. This constraint, coupled with the clients’ desire for a complete reorganization and enhancement of the main floor spaces, resulted in the decision to demolish the existing structure down to the main floor. Given a program calling for additional floor area, the design concept evolved into making a small addition, replacing a previous exterior deck. The addition is a box “insertion” which extends into the main structure; it slides in over the existing floor structure and cantilevers out over existing basement walls, thus not affecting the existing drain field.

lower level plan
main level plan

This wood box contains the master bedroom, bath and kitchen. The exterior form and finish of the box continues into the interior; clerestory windows separate the box from the main structure’s shed roof above. Aluminum clad wood window walls provide for extensive glazing on the main floor. Large sliding doors open onto a rebuilt wood deck to the west and expanding the interior outside for entertaining.

© Ben Benschneider

The daylight basement was remodeled to include a family room, two bedrooms, and a new bath and laundry.

© Ben Benschneider

Products in this project

Facades: Ipe

  • Wood Siding by Ipe

Floor: TBC

  • Flooring: Concrete by TBC

Joinery: Loewen

  • Doors and Windows: Aluminum Cladding over Wood by Loewen

Structures: TBC

  • Cabinets: Teak / Kaiser Woodworks by TBC

Walls: Ipe

  • Wall and Ceiling by Ipe
Cite: "Vashon Cabin / Vandeventer + Carlander Architects" 21 May 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 15 Sep 2014. <>


  1. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    One of the nicest houses I’ve seen. Wonderfully simple and remarkably crafted home (not to beautifully located). Well done, great work.

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      Note the disclaimer below the map:

      * Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.

  2. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    This is quite lovely as is much of the work of V+CA; but I am wondering, as I could see this eventually becoming a permanent year ’round residence as opposed to a vacation cabin… shouldn’t all buildings be built to be able to be more sustainable w/o future remodeling?

    There was obvious design consideration given to the site, views, solar orientation, use of durable/renewable materials, etc., but the envelope (especially that sloped roof) appears to be too minimally insulated, too frequently compromised by recessed penetrations, and possibly w/ too little attention given to placement of future solar panels.

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    The map location is never accurate, it’s pointless having it on here. As for the cabin well surely privacy must be an issue with hikers walking by or people on the water having a good look into the master bedroom and living areas.

    • Thumb up Thumb down 0

      Give it a rest…. people all over the world are looking at the house right now… sheesh!

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