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Five Unusual Houses

Aluminum Siding

In the old days, before pre-fab housing became popular, houses were built with items at hand. The builder purchased the land, and the house was built as money and materials were available.

The advantage of this was simple- no mortgage to pay on for 20-30 years, and you knew the quality of the home. It was also custom built.

Here are five houses that stand in tribute to using what you have. It should be noted that these structures weren’t built as art or attractions- people lived or live in them now.

The Beer Bottle House

In the ghost town of Rhyolite, Nevada, stands three houses built with bottles. That’s right, bottles form the walls of the house. One is made from beer bottles- apparently, borax mining wasn’t the only thing to do in the 1920’s.

The houses were occupied until the town officially died in the 1940’s. Since Rhyloite is close to Death Valley, and no air conditioning existed then, I wonder if the bottles and adobe mortar didn’t work to keep the houses cool in the summer, and warm in the winter.

Beer can house in Houston, Texas

In 1968, Retired railroad employee John Milkovisch decided to make his home stand out. He began decorating his patio with bits of brass, marbles and other items. His creative streak didn’t stop there. He transformed his yard into a work of “debris art” as well.

Since he drank beer, he began to crush the cans and attach them to the house as siding. Can after can became part of the home. Pull tabs became curtains, indoors and out.

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Today, the house is a Houston landmark, and a tribute to one man’s vision. It was occupied until 2002.

Aluminum siding adorns millions of houses across the country- just not in such a unique way.

Airplane House

Costing just $2,000 for the fuselage, $4,000 to move it and $24,000 to renovate it into a memorable home, this is recycling at its most luxurious. The original airplane stairs operate with a garage door opener.

The inside sports wooden floors, walls and ceiling. One of the original bathrooms was retained and still works. The cockpit extends over a lake and a Jacuzzi.

The Newspaper House

In 1922, engineer Elis Stenman, the inventor of the paperclip machine, asked himself a question. Could newspaper become an effective insulation?

He gathered newspapers from friends, newsstands and everywhere he could. Each paper was rolled tight, and held in place with his own devised glue. Inside and outside, he covered the newspapers with varnish.

Inside, he covered all the furniture- lamps, chairs, even the piano. It’s unusual, and beautiful.

Sadly, some of the varnish has not been maintained, and layers of the newspaper show through, exposing headlines almost a hundred years old.

The insulation question appears to be answered. Yes.

The Plastic Bottle House

To bring attention to the need for recycling, Mr. Alfredo Santa Cruz in Puerto Iguazu, Argentina, constructed their house and furnishings from plastic bottles, packing cardboard, aluminum and other recyclable materials.

He also built a smaller playhouse for his daughter using plastic bottles.

Mr. Cruz knows something we don’t. Even with summer daytime temperatures reaching 95 degrees Fahrenheit, the house appears to need no air conditioning.

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Source: The author of this article has over 40 years of experience in diverse forms of DIY, home improvement and repair, crafting, designing, and building furniture, outdoor projects and more.