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Totems Log Cabin Unique Design By Henry Yorke Mann

  • 3 min read

Totems log cabin by Henry Yorke Mann
Surrounded by a forest of towering trees, and the calm water in a man-made lake, the Totems take on mystical qualities. The massive abstract totem figures on the roof of the log house are meant to pay homage to the spirit of forest. The small log house was designed by Henry Yorke Mann as a guesthouse for a client who wanted a guesthouse in their heavily-wooded property of 10 acres in the Coastal Mountains.

The design of this cabin is inspired by the Haida, and other tribes from the north Pacific Coast.
Totems Log Cabin

The roof is made up of cedar planks. Like the Haida plank house, the roof of the cabin is supported by long beams that run the length of the building, including one on each side wall.
Totems Log Cabin interior view

The architect was able to insert continuous glass strips between the side wall beams and the walls. The heavy roof structure appears as if it is floating over the log wall below.

The walls are constructed from 12″ by 12″ cedar timbers with dovetailed corners. The gable wall is mostly made of glass with windows and doors fitted between the cedar posts.
The cabin is symmetrical, with a rectangular floor plan and a hearth in the middle.
Totems Log Cabin interior view
The Totems has an area of 400 ft2 (37,2 m2). The floor plan of the cabin is organized around the central granite fireplace. This separates the front living and dining area from the back kitchen and bathroom. A stairway with alternating treads behind the fireplace leads to a cozy sleeping loft. The skylights along the ridge provide a stunning view of the night skies.

The owners were so happy with their small cabin that they decided to move in full-time. They had previously lived in a 5,000 sq ft house. They describe the cabin as being “like a Fabergé jewel box–it continues to unfold and reveal surprises, if you take the time to look.”
Stuart Bish Photographs, courtesy Henry Yorke Mann. Via Country’s Best Cabins