A House In The Woods

When I was a kid my mom had a pottery mentor who had a gorgeous home in rural Beaufort County. She and her husband had managed the property and built all the structures on it, including a tiny structure they called the folly. In architecture, a folly is a a costly, generally nonfunctional building that was erected to enhance a natural landscape. I am not sure that they were using the architectural definition, and were instead really using the slang term which is used to illustrate a foolish idea or action.

I am not sure which definition they were leaning more into. The folly was absolutely not

  • costly
  • nonfunctional
  • enhancing the natural landscape

If anything it was in opposition to those things. To me, it seemed very clearly built to be low to no cost, it had a single very mindful purpose, and if anything it was built to blend in to the forest where it was placed.

Demo & Construction

My neighbor had a playhouse in their yard that was unused. Over the course of 3 days, it was entirely deconstructed, and the scrap hauled into my yard. Materials were sorted and organized into what would be needed to roughly fit the original design of the a-frame, and a parts list was made to help identify what new materials would be needed to compensate for the final build.


I originally anticipated that with all new materials, the a-frame would be about $630 to build. Instead, my cost for new materials was less than half that, at $268.20.

Most of the construction happened the week before Christmas, when it was as low as 10ºF during the day.

End Result