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33 Eco-Chic Houses Made From Recycled Materials

Eco-chic has never looked so good! Check out these incredible homes that have been built from planes, trains and shipping containers.

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The Paper House

The Paper House

The Paper House in Rockport, Massachusetts is exactly that, a house made from paper. It was built by Elis F. Stenman, a mechanical engineer who designed machines to make paper clips. He started building the home in 1922 and though the paper was first used as insulation, it expanded into furniture. Stenman used pressed paper and a lot of varnish for the walls and paper logs for the furniture.

Photo: Courtesy of The Paper House

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An upside down boat has provided a dry place on shore for centuries but who knew it’d be such an attractive lodging option. The Boatel in Wales sits on the southern end of the Snowdonia National Park and provides a beautiful view. The Boatel is actually a few facilities. A boat, turned right side up, serves as a bedroom, the upside down boat is more of a living room complete with nautical knickknacks.

Keep your boat afloat with these tips.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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View Pictures/REX/Shutterstock

Glass House, Freetown Christiania, Denmark

Christiania, Denmark is an interesting place to begin with so a glass house isn’t out of character for an area in Denmark that is self-proclaimed autonomous. It’s home to around 1,000 people and began in 1971 when people started squatting in what was a military area.

Feel the freedom of the open road in a tiny home. Catch a glimpse of some of the coolest tiny homes out there.

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Home Sweet Silo

In New Jersey, the homeowners of this property decided to transform the old Dutch barn into a new home — silo included. The silo now houses a master suite and a spa bathroom. The home includes eight bedrooms and six baths.

Repurposing items can make for an interesting look like this home, check out what you can do with a clawfoot tub.

Photo: Courtesy of Zillow

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Barnyard Blast

Any children growing up in this house will finally be able to say, yes, they were raised in a barnyard the next time they leave a door open. It’s certainly more than a barnyard after it was converted into a 14-room, five-bedroom, 4 ½-bath manor.

Love the barn wood look? Then you’ll love the look of this DIY barn wood door.

Photo: Courtesy of Zillow

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A Real Green House

A Real Green House


This home, designed by Bercy Chen Studio, is based on Native American pit houses, which used thermal heating with their design. Learn all about geothermal heating.

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Farmhouse Charm

In Vermont, homeowners kept an old silo around and made an old barnyard function with the design of this home.

Get some of that farmhouse charm with a beer caddy made from reclaimed barn wood.

Photo: Courtesy of Zillow

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Gruene Homestead Inn


If merely having a silo on your property wasn’t enough some people have taken to converting old silos into new homes. Down in New Braunfels, Texas, the Gruene Homestead Inn has a silo available to rent for those curious about the living space. As you might imagine it does have a spiral staircase. The silo is a one-bedroom loft apartment built into a 1940s grain silo.

Discover a silo house of another kind and learn the secrets that these homes are hiding.

Photo: Courtesy of Gruene Homestead Inn

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Get Off the Grid

This property in Marble, Colorado stands in the midst of the Rocky Mountains and provides spectacular views. The residence is available on Airbnb and uses some recycled materials in its design. Satellite Wi-Fi and a landline keep guests connected in an otherwise remote location.

Sick of slow Wi-Fi in your home? Check out the easy way to boost your Wi-Fi signal.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Malcolm Schuyl/FLPA/imageBROKER/REX/Shutterstock

Water Tower in Disguise

The House in the Clouds in Thorpeness, England provided the perfect cover for the town’s water tower. The clever “house” was built in 1923 and stands 70 feet high. The unusual design was meant as a way to get away from the utilitarian look of the water tower. The water tank was removed in 1979. These days the house has five rooms, three bedrooms and a room at the top, which provides an amazing view of the town below. Book a stay there by visiting the website.

Get your windows clean like a pro so you’ve got an incredible view at home.

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MODS International Tiny Home

MODS International Tiny Home


MODS International has partnered with Amazon to offer a $36,000 pre-fabricated home made from new shipping containers. How much does it cost to ship a shipping container home? That'll run about $3,754.49. Thinking about a tiny home? Check out these tiny home options.

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Tiny House Listings

Content with a Container in California

Leave it to California to have an elegant tiny home for sale. This tiny home is made from an old shipping container. It includes a rooftop deck to enjoy the gorgeous Californian sunsets. It’s available for $69,000 and can be shipped.

Find out about another unique design when you take a look inside this tiny home.

Photo: Courtesy of Tiny House Listings

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Tiny House Listings

Ship It!

Living in a shipping container in Nevada sounds like the story of someone who lost a really bad bet. With 160 square feet and gorgeous wood decor it will feel like you won the lottery.

See why you need to add geometrics to your home decor now.

Photo: Courtesy of Tiny House Listings

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Terre et Toi

A yurt is an excellent way to experience nature and this yurt in France comes designed with a number of organic materials. From straw to earthen plasters to lime and hemp plasters, this little getaway in southern France that overlooks a lake on 20 acres is quite the retreat to nature. It’s also available on Airbnb.

If France is a little too far for an experience in nature, find a place closer to home and make the whole experience easier with tips like using a sled to transport equipment.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Bristol, UK

This eco-house in Bristol has walls made of straw and has the proof. The house cleverly shines a light on the interior of the walls with a little window into them. Bricks for the house came from a Victorian warehouse that formerly occupied the lot the house now stands. The roof of the house is a “living” roof as well. Get a complete look at the place by checking out the Airbnb listing.

A living roof might be a smidge too much for your home but a flower wall can liven up a patio or deck area. Get inspired with these DIY flower walls.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Jungle Beach House

The house sprouted from the desire to work with a recycled shipping container and what took shape is stunning. This house in Cocles, Limon, Costa Rica offers an open house design, too, which allows the natural sounds of the jungle through. The house opens up to a garden, which grows oranges, avocados, mangos, papayas, bananas and other fruit.

Consider growing some plants and vegetables on your patio.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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The Container

If smaller living is a notion you’ve entertained for a while, get acquainted with it by checking out this recycled container home in Australia. Set in the country, the container home has sheep nearby on the farm, along with a wide variety of flowers.

Get some ideas on how to brighten your landscape with these plants.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Benson Ford Ship House

We’ve heard of boathouses but not too many boathouses that have been grounded ashore. The Benson Ford Ship House in Put-in-Bay, Ohio got there after Frank J. Sullivan purchased the boat in the early 1980s after the boat got decommissioned. Sullivan envisioned a summer home for his family with the boat, which the Ford family originally used to transport iron ore and other materials across the Great Lakes.

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The Recycled House

For an avid recycler who knows what can be recycled, the Recycled House in Charlottesville, Virginia still might surprise. It took six years to collect the material used for The Recycled House, like the use of leftover granite for flooring and croquet balls along the railing.

See what you can recycle that you maybe didn’t think you could, like packing peanuts.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Earthship Patagonia, Argentina

Solar panels, adobe construction and artisanal furniture make the Earthship Patagonia an eco-chic destination in Argentina. It’s situated next to a greenhouse and there are plenty of succulents around to brighten up the space.

Get a glimpse at some outstanding DIY greenhouses to get your garden started.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Joshua Tree Getaway

Shipping container homes are all over the place, even out in Joshua Tree. But few are as stylish as this mid-century marvel. Stroll down memory lane by checking out 14 iconic mid-century modern décor elements.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Koe in de Kost: Earth House, Netherlands

Check out an Earth house complete with a grass roof set in the Netherlands. The interior includes recycled items but the real treat might be the setting. The house sits on a farm and those who stay there can take part in the work on the farm by helping milk cows, feeding cows, gardening or even running the tractor.

You might even pick up some tips for easier gardening.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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The Daisy House, Subiaco, Australia

Located just outside of Perth, Australia, The Daisy House used recycled bricks and old steel railway lines for joists and lintels.

Find out how joists work in a house and how to replace bricks.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Cob Cottage, British Columbia

This cottage utilizes local, sustainable, natural materials in its construction for a unique look. On the inside it features tremendous woodworking.

Get started in repurposing work with these awesome-looking projects.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Cabana Floripa

Down in Florianopolis, Brazil, you’ll find one of the most stunning houses constructed with a massive amount of recycled glass bottles arranged in several innovative ways.

Begin some glass bottle work of your own by seeing how to use a glass bottle cutter.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Hobbit Hut

Over in Geyserville, California, Lord of the Rings fans will get a kick out of this Hobbit-inspired home. It’s built with adobe bricks from the property and features a living roof. It even has an adobe oven for cooking pizzas.

Getting tired of visiting pizza farms? Check out an incredible outdoor wood-fired oven.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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The name might conjure ideas of space-themed rooms but really it’s just a rebranding of a repurposed container in the Netherlands. For $63 a night on Airbnb, it might be the perfect spot for someone who loves a handy hint for a frugal homeowner.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Laura Doss/Carson Leh/Solent/REX/Shutterstock

747 Wing House

We’ve seen boats become houses but how about an old Boeing 747? That’s right, it exists—in California. Architect David Randall Hertz completed the project for Francie Rehwald, who spent $26,000 on the decommissioned plane. The house sits on the western edge of the Santa Monica Mountains and needed a helicopter to deliver the wing and other construction pieces because of the remote location. The wing serves as the roof and after delivering it by helicopter, it actually cost less than conventional roofing materials.

Got a roofing project you need to complete? See how to remove shingles to save yourself some time and headaches.

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Beacon Preservation

Goose Rocks

Plenty of people visit old lighthouses but how many get to spend a night in one? You can at Goose Rocks in Maine. The lighthouse can accommodate up to six and those who visit do so as a way to support the preservation of the lighthouse.

Make your home a beacon of light with these awesome tips.

Photo: Courtesy of Beacon Preservation

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The Rancho

At Cielo Vanilla, Atenas in Costa Rica, get the experience of tropical living in a house that uses black lava rocks for walls. The property includes 4 acres with loads of fruit trees and tons of birds, perfect for birders.

Attract the birds to your backyard with one of these seriously cool birdhouses.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Container Coziness

Find a sense of contentment with this container home located in Palma de Mallorca in Spain. Lounge poolside or step inside to soak up the rays of natural light that permeate throughout the home.

Pools don’t have to be incredibly ornate but you can get an idea of what looks good with these amazing pools.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Off the Rails

Sometimes it might feel like you’re on a train headed nowhere but this recycled train car will make you feel right at home. Located in Australia, The Royal, provides a more relaxing sleep than riding in a sleeping car on the tracks. The train cars come from a 1905 train that was restored.

Check out restoration projects you can do at home.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb

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Tile House

Outside of Joshua Tree in California, travelers can revel in the visually stunning tile house that will have them inspecting the tiniest of details. The tile house is a mix of Mexican tile, smalti, handmade Perry Hoffman ceramics, tile and fused glass, found objects and stained glass.

See the power of mosaic tile in your kitchen.

Photo: Courtesy of Airbnb