Suburban Pioneers

The Adventures and Misadventures of Homesteading in 21st-Century America

Lauren: The Making of a Chicken Coop: A Tour August 6, 2013

Filed under: Chickens,DIY Projects — lkcook20 @ 3:46 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

My mom basically called my chicken coop “redneck.” My mother-in-law said, at first glance, she thought it looked kind of rundown. I prefer the term: rustic chic. I’m super proud of it and LOVE that I can say that we didn’t buy ANY wood for this project.

Some guy cut down a tree in his front yard and advertised free logs on craigslist. We jumped on that great deal and crammed them into our Mitsubishi.

Ezra with logs

logs in car

I think he called it fire wood, but we had other plans. . . The other wood came from pallets we salvaged and dragged home in our kids’ wagon. Clearly, we need to buy a truck.


It was like a puzzle.  Each log got notched and cut so they would fit together.

Ever helpful

Ever helpful

We scraped all the bark off and stained the logs. Dave wanted to leave the bark on, but I thought it would be more aesthetically pleasing for the posts to look similar to one another. And, I have this knack for turning small projects into larger, more time-consuming ones–all in the name of beauty! As luck would have it, the wood was infested with bark beetles, which were slowly eating the wood and etching little grooves into it. When I discovered them, I felt very vindicated in my decision and determination to scrape off all the bark and by default, the beetles, too. Now whenever Dave and I disagree about something, I just say, “Remember, remember the tiny bark beetle,” which doesn’t really win me any points, but I feel good saying it.

File:Dendroctonus ponderosae.jpg

A bark beetle: small but destructive.


Here is  one of my favorite parts: the chicken door and ladder. The door slides open if you pull on the rope so you don’t have to enter the run to let the chickens out in the morning.


This is my other favorite part. I saw this door in a neighbor’s backyard. It was there for a while and I kept looking at it, thinking it would make the perfect chicken coop door. So I went over and asked if she had any plans for it. She said she didn’t. Score! Free door!


This is the inside where the ladies will sleep. The roosting bar was another free branch.

I installed the flooring myself. It’s made of peel and stick vinyl. It ended up costing about $1.50 because it was on clearance. By far, the most expensive part of the whole thing was the hardware cloth mesh that encloses the entire run. I guess protection is costly.

wholecoop with text

Here it is in all it’s rustic-chic goodness.


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