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Backyard Chalet

Before you even step foot inside this Virginia guesthouse, you’re transported to another continent — and perhaps even another era. Inspired by their time spent stationed in Germany and Austria, the owners of 1,150-square-foot escape asked builder Hidden Creek Timber Homes for a chalet that could’ve been plucked straight out of a Bavarian village. The abode would provide space to not only host family and friends, it would also provide a place for them live while they built their main timber frame home, just a stone’s throw away.

Hidden Creek and Timberpeg (the provider of the frame) delivered, using a combination of different wood species, rustic materials and quaint details to build a guesthouse that’s both nostalgic and efficient. The plan started small, at just 20 feet square, but grew to accommodate specific pieces of furniture the family collected while overseas.

On the exterior, wide overhangs and a pleasing combination of stucco and cedar shiplap achieve a European feel. Inside, a frame of eastern white pine, chosen for its uniquely rustic character, is paired with cherry floors and white pine cabinets to create an abundance of exposed wood as the owners had so loved in interiors abroad. “They looked at a couple of our other projects that successfully mixed and matched wood,” explains Steve Kenney, owner of Hidden Creek, “and they were really satisfied with the look, so they wanted to carry that into this home.”

And despite its nostalgic appearance, it’s as modern as can be, thanks to energy-efficient structural insulated panels (SIPs). Dana Miller, the Timberpeg regional manager, jokes, “You could heat it with a flashlight.”

The hallmark of the home, however, is the quaint detailing, like the heart cutouts that punctuate the balustrade up to the loft. Downstairs in the kitchen, the cabinets boast their own heart-themed handiwork as well. “It’s the little details, like on the kitchen cabinets, that make it so when you’re inside, you feel like you’ve stepped into another place,” says Steve. “You feel like you’re in Bavaria.”

Square Footage: 1,150
Bedrooms: 1
Bathrooms: 1 full
Timber Provider: Timberpeg

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