The Coop

It’s here.  The Coop.

4 months ago my boyfriend presented me with a cardboard box full of  baby chicks.

3 months ago I started to build a chicken coop for them.  2 weeks ago, I finished it.

I normally do a lot of talking and funny story telling at this point in my posts, but not today.  Today, I’m just going straight to the pictures.

Not ’cause I don’t have a lot of funny stories to tell.  I do.  Lots of em.

It’s just that I have the feeling you’re gonna skip past all of the writing and go straight to the pictures anyway.  So why waste the funny?   Funny is a horrible thing to waste.

It is my honour to introduce you to …

 

Coop Title

CoopFirst copy

 

Coop 2
Coop 3
Coop 4

 

Coop 5
The box attached to the left side of the coop houses the exterior nesting box on top (which the chickens have access to from inside the coop) as well as storage in the larger door below.

Coop 6
Both of the doors have double security features.  You can’t be too cautious with a neighbourhood full of cats, hawks, raccoons, skunks, neighbours and other egg loving monsters.  Each door has a series of small Rare Earth Magnets, PLUS  strips of wood that pivot and lock the door in place.  That was the fella’s idea.  It’s completely functional and brilliant.

The lower storage compartment holds feed, treats, the egg basket and pine shavings.

Coop 7
The nesting box holds … well … eggs eventually.  I hope.  Oh my God, what if they never lay an egg?

Coop 8
I built a sliding piece of wood into the nesting box to make sure no eggs accidentally roll out.  Plus I can slide it up for easy cleaning of the box.

Coop 9

 

 

I know what you’re going to be  thinking when you see this next picture.  You’re gonna be  thinking …  there’s EGGS!  No.  There are no eggs.  Those are fake eggs which we put in the nesting box to encourage the chickens to lay their eggs in there, as opposed to some random spot in the coop or run.

Coop 10

This is the door going into the nesting box as seen from inside the coop.

Coop 11
Like my gates, all the coop doors close with Rare Earth Magnets.   Definitely predator proof.

Coop 12
Coop 13

 

 

To help the coop air out and to give us a better view of all the girls during the day I made pull out screens for both the upper and lower doors.  The coop is directly across from my dining room window, so when we’re sitting down to dinner we can watch the girls  put themselves to bed at 7:30 every night.  I love the screens.  They’re one of those things I didn’t intend to make, but ended up whipping up right at the end of the project.

Coop 14
I cannot tell you what the coop cost to build, because I have no idea.  Like so many other coop builders before us, we stopped counting when it got scary.  Of course,  I saved when I could.

6,039,163,734

 

Guess you’re  curious about the ring.  It’s my pride and joy.

Coop 15
It leads to a little door inside the coop.

Coop 16
The rope runs through a configuration of pulleys and eye hooks.

Coop 17
So to open up the door to the run all we have to do is pull the ring and the door slides open effortlessly.  The ring then slides onto the hook below to keep it open.  To close it we just remove the ring from the hook and the screen door spring at the top of the door, pulls the door shut automatically. Thanks to Heather Bullard and her coop for inspiring this particular aspect of my henhouse.

Coop 18
Coop 19
Coop20 copy
Coop 21
The galvanized tub is filled with dirt.  The hens LOVE to jump in it and give themselves dust baths.   The tub is from my mother’s house.  When I was teeny tiny she used to use it as a pool for me.

Coop 22
In honour of little Lucky who died early on.  Thanks to LeeAnne Bloye who kindly made the little gravemarker and sent it to me.

Coop 23
6,039,166,344

 

 

Looking down into the run from the door inside the coop.

Coop 24
I spent an hour or two at the cottage earlier this year searching for the perfect piece of driftwood to act as a perch in the run.  This was the piece I deemed perfect.

Coop 25
Every morning all 4 chickens relax in the sun on the perch.

Coop 26
A skylight.  Yes.  I installed a skylight made from a sturdy piece of Plexiglass to allow more light into the coop.  My house does not have a skylight.

Coop 27
At 7:30 every night like clockwork, the girls head themselves up the ladder to the coop and jump up on their perch to roost for the night.

Coop 28

 

 

Bedtime.

Coop 29
And to all a good night.

Coop Night Final 2

 

That’s it for now.  If you’re interested, here’s another post with a few more details about the coop experience including shots of me  building.

And I’m sorry, but I do not have any building plans for the coop.  I made it up as a I went with inspiration from both Heather Bullard’s Chez Poulet and Mitchell Snyder’s Modern Coop which was featured in Dwell online.

3 months, 2 major injuries and a huge learning curve later the coop is complete.  And I couldn’t be happier with it.

 

 


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426 Comments

  1. Anne says:

    Absolutely beautiful Karen! I knew it would be, but I’m awed by how lovely it is! You’ve got some very lucky chickens!

    This was totally worth staying awake for! Congratulations on completing your coop!

    • Michael Hall says:

      I have been designing residences (Human) for almost 50 years, and I have never seen anything so beautiful. Thank you for sharing. I am tempted to adopt the motto “Castles to Chicken Coops”, and see how well I stack up.
      Mike

      • Karen says:

        Well! That’s quite a compliment. Thanks Michael. I’m not sure if it’s the most beautiful thing *I’ve* ever seen, but I’m pretty proud of my chicken coop. It does look good. :) ~ karen

    • Donna B Smith says:

      Love this…but where does the POOP go? Needs wheels so you can move it around your property to fertilize your land..yard etc. think about it. Im waiting for a great chicken coop but it has to give back (not only give eggs)

      • Karen says:

        Donna – LOL. Um, the coop is 11 feet long by 4 feet wide. It’s a bit too big to be a chicken tractor. Also, chicken poop is actually too strong to be put directly on any grass or vegetables. It needs to compost. I just shovel out the poop, compost it, then put it on the garden after several months. ~ karen!

        • Tim says:

          Love the coop!A great balance between style and functionality.
          I am totally inspired. We have a small tractor style coop, but I need something bigger.

          How tall is it?

          More on the poop question….
          It looks like you use pine shavings, how often do you shovel it out/ change the shavings completely?
          Do you compost with the shavings?

          Thanks so much!
          Tim

          • Karen says:

            Hi Tim, thanks! 4 years later and I still love the coop. I’ve switched to straw which I have inside the coop and now outside the coop as well. It dries quickly and it makes PERFECT compost in less than a month using the hot compost method. The coop is approximately 7′ tall in total. But you can make it whatever height you want. I had to make my coop very specific proportions to fit within my side yard. I also wanted the coop to be hidden from the top of the fence. Good luck! ~ karen

            • Tim says:

              Thanks,
              Another quick question not poop related…., do you have any protection from burrowing predators?
              In our small tractor coop i added wire mesh underneath, however I really dislike it from a cleaning perspective.
              Thanks again!

    • Marcia says:

      WOW. HOW did you learn to do all this stuff? I am very impressed. I am just aspiring to having chickens – so have been poking thru Coop ideas – and this is fabulous! I wish I had the 1) knowledge 2) energy to accomplish something like this. Bravo!! Good for YOU and good for your lucky chickens.
      What are you working on now? And BTW, I for one would have been happy to read thru your funny bits!
      Thanks for sharing. GREAT job!!!!

      • Karen says:

        Thanks Marcia – At the moment I’m remodelling my kitchen. If you sign up for my posts by email you’ll get all the info as it comes in. :) (I post 5 days a week) ~ karen!

  2. julie says:

    oh.my.god. This is magnificent!!

  3. Laura Watt says:

    It’s lovely. Now you hens get laying!

  4. gf says:

    If the chicken thing does not work out you could always take on borders. Looks seriously fantastic, and much bigger than lots of places on the tinyhouse blog. :)

    Is the chicken cam going in it at some point?

  5. Kristy says:

    I. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. your coop!!! Your girls live in.a house with more bells and whistles than I do! AHHHHMAZING! Truly! <3

    • Karen says:

      Thank you Kristy. I appreciate you saying that. It was a ton of work and I’m not going to pretend it wasn’t, or act like “awww, it was nothin'”. But it *was* a lot of fun to create something like this and watch it become an actual home. :) ~ karen

  6. Will you build my next house? Your coop is nicer than my first two apartments after college :)

    • Karen says:

      Courtney – Absolutely. No problem. Let’s estimate here … it took me 3 months to build an approximately 450 square foot structure with no plumbing or electricity. (as of yet) You gimme 5 or 6 years and I’ll knock out a nice 1 room bungalow if you like. :) ~ karen

  7. susan Preston says:

    Fabulous! What lucky chickens!!

  8. Trysha says:

    Wow wow wow!!! It’s absolutely gorgeous!

  9. Pati Gulat says:

    That is FANTASTIC, Karen !!! My mother will be so jealous 1 She’s had chickens her whole life and my hubby wants to build her a coop but I bet it won’t be as snazzy as yours ! BRAVO,Girl…WELL DONE !!!

  10. Grace says:

    It’s absolutely beautiful! Nice work.

  11. Debbie A says:

    Truly stunning – I knew it would be fantastic but truly outstanding… well done.

  12. Laura says:

    So impressive!!! By-the-way I would never skip over the funny writing.

  13. Michelle says:

    I have no words – it’s gorgeous. I’m jealous of chickens – is that wrong?

  14. Antonia says:

    Amazing work. Congratulations! Your girls are pretty lucky! :)

  15. Amazing!!!! Fabulous pictures, that watermelon is my fave!!!
    xo
    Kate

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Kate – Standing back and looking at it once it was done was definitely one of my prouder moments. And who KNEW chickens love watermelon? I’m think of starting a feature “will they eat it”, kind of like Letterman’s “will it float?”. ~ karen

  16. Annie says:

    My jaw literally DROPPED when I saw the first photo!! It’s truly stunning–congratulations on a job well done! I bet those girls’ll start layin’ any day now :)

  17. What a sweet poulet suite! Great job!

    : )

    Julie M.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Julie – If Heather Bullard hadn’t already named her coop “Chez Poulet”, I would have dubbed mine that. I’m goin’ with Green Fakers instead. :) ~ karen

  18. Tommy says:

    Oh my stars! I LOVE it! Now to figure out how to get my fella to build one for me…because now, thanks to you, I NEED me some chickens.

    • Karen says:

      Tommy – You do. You really do. They’re incredibly entertaining and fulfilling. Honestly. Like gardening but better. ~ karen

  19. JessieB says:

    Well, I should have known, as a regular reader of this blog, that your chicken coop would be more fabulous than my apartment, but DAAAAAAMN. I need to say it again: DAAAAAAMN. I now want a house so I can get some hens and also have a fabulous chicken coop.

  20. Jenn says:

    Beautiful, functional and stylish.

    Worth the wait.

  21. Mary says:

    It’s really beautiful, Karen! Thanks so much for sharing. The photos are truly great too.

  22. Pam'a says:

    Brava! Brava! You should be *very* proud, Karen!

  23. Nancy (aka moneycoach) says:

    Can I move in?
    Ssrsly this is a work of art

  24. george says:

    ha ha. rare earth magnets predator proof. you realize that raccoons have hands right? and their arms are very very strong?

  25. Claudine says:

    Hi Karen. It’s exquisite! Much more involved than what I expected, but also not, knowing you and what your projects are like.
    About the screens, you said they’re pull out screens. Does that mean that you just set them in place and then remove them to close up at night, or do they actually tuck into the structure and then get pulled out and flipped into place? I couldn’t tell from earnestly checking out the photos. I don’t know why that matters so much to me???
    I am very, very impressed and your coop, more than any other I’ve looked at, makes me believe I can have chickens in my little yard.
    Thank you for such a thorough and lovely presentation of what you’ve accomplished. I’m sure you have incredibly happy chickens.
    Oh, and I agree with Laura. I’ll never skip over funny, which means I eagerly devour everything you write.

  26. It looks awesome! Great job.

  27. barbara says:

    Now if your a chicken, and you have to be cooped up.. This is THE coop du jour you handy girl you!!!

  28. Sheila says:

    That is beyond brilliant. Congratulations Karen, your hard work has certainly paid off. And there I was wondering how you could have hens out in your garden without spoiling the (gorgeous) look of it… mission accomplished.

  29. Pat says:

    Wow! That is a fine piece of handy work. I think it is Style at Home worthy. I kept thinking, “When will we see the gosh darn chicken coop?” Occasionally, I even thought you were going to shock us all and announce that the whole chicken thing was in the frying pan. I hope you have taken some time to celebrate with a little housewarming hen party!

  30. Adriane says:

    My, she’s yar.

  31. Ryan says:

    Wow, fantastic coop.

  32. Bloody hell Karen! I was expecting it to be good, but this is brilliant. Can I live there? I’ll be tidy and even make the chicken noises. Can’t promise an egg though. Let me know!

  33. Jen says:

    Well…that’s just about the greatest thing I’ve seen in awhile! It’s beautiful…so functional…and looks amazing in your backyard. Be proud! You did an amazing job. Congrats on getting it finished. Bravo….Bravo!!!

  34. Barbara H. says:

    Well, that was worth waiting for! Though I never would have skipped the funny writing, either, it was a wise move not to dilute the attention to the writing or the pictures. Fantastic job, Karen. My sister’s chickens are living in a horse stall – very basic – and they love cucumbers.

  35. Ann says:

    Has anyone told you that ONE wing has to have the feathers clipped or your chicks will fly over the fence and be prey for dogs, etc.
    This is done by catching your hen, spread out the one wings feathers and using a pair of regular scissors cut off the longest part of the feathers. They will need clipping regularly or they will grow out and away they’ll fly. This does not hurt, just like trimming your fingernails. Always clip only one wing per chick because if you clip both this will enable them to fly. With one clipped, they will be off balance and can’t fly away. And believe me, a chicken can fly just fine, thank you.

    • Karen says:

      Ann – I’ve seen those chickens fly! It’s hilarious. I did ask a few farmers/chicken people about it, but no one seems to think clipping is necessary. I guess we’ll find out. 😉 But my fence is 8 feet high so I don’t think they’re getting over it. Plus, they don’t seem to have any desire to leave whatsoever, LOL. I’ll let you know. ~ karen

      • Gerald says:

        You won’t have any problems with the hens flying over your fence. They might could (although Rhode Island Reds are a bit heavy–so they might not can) but basically they are lazy about flying and are walking birds (like some wild birds actually). If something got after one (dog or predator) they might make it over but even then it is doubtful.

  36. Kate says:

    This is amazing! You should be so proud!
    I’m going to use this to convince my mum to let me get chickens. She’s always saying I can’t have chickens until I find a fox-proof, possum-proof, rat-proof coop!! I think this will convince her.

  37. mimi says:

    I’m speechless!
    I always thought that things you make yourself look home-made, unfinished, crooked. By “you” I don’t mean you Karen, I mean other DIYers.
    This is incredible. Definitely better than most of my previous living spaces!
    To chickens: realise you’re onto a good thing here, get laying pronto!

  38. judy says:

    Wow. Wow. Wow. Did I say wow? A monument to the benefits of OCD and what it can do to fuel a rather ordinary construction project into an Architectural Digest worthy coop! Bravo Karen!

  39. Karen J says:

    My first reaction to this post was ‘where’s the donate button?’ Seriously. This is better then any glossy magazine that I (regularly) shell out $$$ for!

    WOW!!! Was expecting white? That smokey grey is stunning.
    Well done Karen!!!

    Now take sometime to relax and enjoy your hard work before venturing onto your next project. Speaking of which – what is the next project?
    You do realize that you’ve set your bar VERY high (lol).
    P.S. Now, show me the donate button!

    • Karen says:

      Karen J! – LOL. NO kidding! I should have put the donate button up. Do you have any idea how much a coop costs!?? :) No. I only put the donate button up in a post when I’m desperate. :) ~ karen

  40. Anita says:

    FABULOUS!!!!!!!!!
    It is gorgeous, I want chickens and I want you to build a coop. If the blog thing bores you, you might want to go into chicken coop design & build.

  41. mary c says:

    WOW!The gorgeosity can not be overstated enough.

  42. Alexandra says:

    That is freaking gorgoeus! You built that all by yourself in a few months?!?!? I’m lucky if I can build an asymmetrical shelf I bought on Amazon that comes with directions and numbered pieces and everything! Good work, chief!!! Oprah is probably reading this post as I type, writing an email requesting an interview so that she can give you your OWN “Art of Doing Stuff” show :)

  43. Jules says:

    Whoooaa!!!! You have sone serious talent Karen – this coop is beyond amazing! Do chickens smile? I think they are smiling – thanks for sharing! SO impressed!!

  44. Stephanie says:

    Amazing! I’m awe-struck by how beautiful your coop is! You make me want chickens so badly…

  45. marilyn says:

    truly beautiful karen! you should be so proud, its so sleek and cool looking, great job! now take a break! as if..

  46. Elaine Clark says:

    That is just jaw-droppingly (word?) beautiful. I am in awe and quite impressed. My chickens love watermelon. They, of course, also love corn on the cob, unbuttered and even uncooked. I give them kitchen scraps and let them pick through them. I am not showing them these pictures because they will be very jealous.

    Great work!

  47. Donna says:

    Just when I think I have seen the best you have you outdo yourself again! The fence, the backyard and now your hen house?? Perfect!!!

  48. blake says:

    It’s perfect, Karen. I want to come back in my next life as one of your girls!

  49. Rebecca says:

    Definitely worth the wait! The coop is beautiful.

  50. Jeanne says:

    Karen: I am wowed by your talent. Truly an original inspiration. What was the stain or paint you used? Beautiful and fits right in with the exterior decor of your yard. Waiting for the book
    to come out complete with all the laughs, pain, joys and satisfaction, plus egg perfect recipes
    and eggspertly advice for those who live vicariously through your adventures.
    APPLAUSE, APPLAUSE!

    • Karen says:

      Jeanne – It’s a stain. I made up the colour and had them mix it at the store. It’s the same colour I used all around my backyard in the planter beds I built. A very dark gray/black to match the slate and flagstone in my backyard. I applied it with a brush and then wiped it off so a tiny bit of the wood grain shows through. ~ karen

  51. Tracy says:

    Absolutely beautiful!! I love everything about it and am now wondering about our own coop and how I can make it better! I have coop envy. I sort of hate you for that, but don’t take it personally!

    • Karen says:

      Tracy – Totally understandable. I had coop envy/hate for Heather Bullard for a while there. Still kindda do. Love her white coop. ~ karen

  52. Heather says:

    (insert high pitch) I want a chicken coop!!
    I wonder how many husbands/partners got woken up this morning with pictures of a chicken coop thrust in their faces!
    WOW is all I can say. Well done!’

    • Karen says:

      Heather – Thanks! Yes, chickens are a whack of fun. BUT … I think I’ve proven that you don’t need a man to build you a chicken coop! Just some time and some tools. And a bandaid or two. ~ karen

  53. Jessie-Lee says:

    This is totally not at all what I was expecting. But can I just say, it is so you. Thats funny, your chicken coop is you! Awesome job, your most magnificent piece to date!!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Jessie – I was actually gonna go a little more traditional with a peaked roof, etc., but the size of my hard wouldn’t accommodate it so I had to go flat roof, slightly more contemporary. It still looks rustic in real life because I didn’t completely stain the wood, sort of white washed it a little bit. Or … gray washed it. :) ~ karen

      • S woodberry says:

        Karen–
        I got a wild hair and bought chickens for me and my kiddos (my husband is still shaking his head). So I have been scouring the internet for an idea that I can build; I’m tired of being at the mercy of another’s expertice/attention to detail. :) Two quick questions: 1. assuming you get snow where you live in Canada, do you have to heat the coop in the winter: do you board up the ventilation slits on top? 2. assuming again (yes, I know assuming is bad bad bad), how does the flat roof work out with that? Snow just piles up and that’s okay? Sorry I’m an ignorant Northwesterner about all-things-Canadian-weather-wise. I’m seriously contemplating designing a coop similar to yours. Now if my 4 young kiddos will let me have the time and space to tackle this project!!! You did well. It’s pretty awesome!

        • Karen says:

          Hi Shannon! I do get snow here. Snow. Lots of snow, lol. And very very cold. I’ve never had to add supplemental heating to the coop until last year. And I’m glad I did it because this winter was even colder. One of the coldest in history. What I ended adding was a wall mounted ceramic heater. It’s very thin and poses no fire hazard so I felt safe with it. You just need to keep it warm enough that they don’t get frostbite on their combs and waddles. People are always worried about chickens in the cold, but the truth is the heat is much more dangerous for them and way more likely to kill them. So remember to make sure they have fresh clean water in the summer and a place to cool off. I often host down an area of dirt under a small tree for them to lay on. And yes the snow just piles on the flat roof and it’s fine. Once it starts melting and getting heavy in the spring I push it off with a shovel. Finally, don’t ever board up the ventilation in the coop. It stays open all year long because again, more than cold, humidity can kill chickens. It gives them respiratory problems. So they need really good ventilation to keep the coop from getting too humid. There was one storm this winter that I should have covered the vents and didn’t. I didn’t realize it at the time but the snow was coming in sideways and right onto their roost. Poor things. They lived through it just fine though. :) Also in the search bar on my site look for the “keeping your chicken’s water thawed”. If you live in a similar climate then you’ll need to know about it. Good luck! ~ karen

  54. Mickey says:

    Well done, Karen! Your Green Fakers is totally awesome.
    Mickey

  55. Absolutely outstanding! This is the BEST chicken coop I’ve ever seen and I just love it! You should have some very happy chickens producing lost of eggs! ;o)

  56. Kim Bernson says:

    I am just blown away….

  57. lynn says:

    Karen ~ Great job! I love our coop and ours is not
    nearly as nice as yours! Today I removed your site
    from our Favorites tab so there is NO chance our hens will see this post! Otherwise they’d ask which direction Canada is and start off to your place…I am sorta feeling like a chicky slum lord!
    Seriously, I love how compact it all is and I was wondering if you’ll need to heat it during the cold months? We are down South and we do so I suppose you will, but where and how? The solid door panels will come in handy for that too –
    good thinking! Can’t wait for you to get your first egg!

    • Karen says:

      Lynn – I expect to heat the coop with a 40 watt bulb. I’m looking into using a solar panel attached to a battery for that. ~ karen!

      • Sara says:

        Your coop is amazing, I love it, and it seems to me rather practical because it is built tall and not have to squat to get eggs, etc. Nice touched even storage. YOu thought of everythiNg. BEAUTIFUL and PRACTICAL.
        I had a chicken coop in Philadelphia, PA and what I did for heat, was a bought to tiles that had been specially made like a sandwich and you plugged it I had it on a timer and laid it on the floor of their coop and it gave radiant heat, soft. I bought 2 of these tiles and even in the worst of winters it was great. I bought them online from a chicken, coop web site from Pittsburg, PA. DOn’t remember the name. Enjoy your chickies and the fresh eggs.

        • Karen says:

          Thanks Sara – This has actually been the mildest winter I can remember in Ontario so there haven’t been any problems. Two nights I left their heat lamp on in the coop and that’s all they needed to keep it above freezing. And frankly, I think they were fine w/out it. I was doing it more for my peace of mind than the comfort of the chickens. The chickens probably thought I was nuts. :) ~ karen

    • Gerald says:

      Heat not required except in extreme climates (read sub-zero areas. Down and feathers are the best insulation there is and they have a high metabolic rate as well–AND they do huddle close when it is cold. Cold–not a problem.

  58. Jen says:

    Holy cannoli. That coop is nicer than the house I live in. Chickens w/ lantern ambiance, skylights, and an aesthetically pleasing perch – wow! Tuco should’ve stayed quiet so he could enjoy these digs.

  59. Tina W. says:

    Wow! Those are some lucky chickens.

  60. Rachel says:

    I had hens a few years back and cannot wait until I can have them again, they are so cool! You will be amazed by the crazy eggs that your girls will produce…all sorts of shapes and colours with speckles and spots and of course,because your hens are brown, your eggs will be brown (or should I say the hens eggs will be brown!) My kids were little when I had hens and it was a wonderful learning experience, they still remember it very well. Maybe you can find some kids to amaze, also boyfriends are easily amazed!

    • Gerald says:

      Rhode Island Reds–they produce really nice brown eggs (only). Many will be double yoked when they first start laying but that will end soon.

  61. Lou Cinda says:

    AWESOME!!! These have to be the happiest, most well housed chickens I have EVER seen!! It is like a condo! With dirt spa and all! You did a fantastic job!! And they are already on a schedule……bed at 7:30….sleep through the night…how great is that?

    Lou Cinda

  62. Beth says:

    Wowza. Our first coop was a tarpaper shack, so yeah. Wow. Well done! Gorgeous!

  63. Steph says:

    My goodness! You weren’t going for simple there at all, were you?! What a GORGEOUS coop! I mean it…. absolutely fabulous! I wish I could have chickens, I’d copy your coop. (or TRY) But, city ordinances say “NO”…

  64. Liz S. says:

    Only you could make a chicken coop look like a piece of art. It looks like it’s meant to be there. I love the lanterns too!

  65. Talia says:

    Wow! That’s nicer than some houses I’ve seen! lol. Really, you did an incredible job. You should be so proud!

  66. Cheryl in Wisconsin says:

    Definitely worth the wait. Thanks for sharing.

    It always amazes me that chickens instinctively sleep on a narrow little ledge. Don’t they ever have those dreams where their leg suddenly kicks? It would knock them right off their pole and onto the ground below, a rude wake up indeed. “What the…?”

  67. bluephatmom says:

    Classy and elegant. I also love the chicken bum shot in picture two. You are a wonder and an inspiration Karen!

  68. Samantha says:

    Absolutely well done! Spectacular! Gobsmacked! (I always wanted to use that word, hope it was well placed.) It’s been a joy and very safe watching you build this from this side of the screen. :) Love it.

  69. Carol says:

    Karen this is so impressive and is a great example of how anything can be well designed and stylish on any budget,,,,a recycling centre, a dog house, a chicken coop etc. It does take a lot of thoughtful planning and consideration and good taste though which you have exceeded in spades! This will bring you so much joy for years to come! Stellar job, I love love love it!!!!!
    C

  70. Cynthia says:

    Wow, Nice work!

  71. Sara says:

    Gorgeous! Random side question. I’m pregnant with baby #2 in a different house than our last. Would rare earth magnets be strong enough to baby proof cabinets?

    • Karen says:

      Sara – Yup. Honestly the 1″ rare earth magnets are very strong. You might have to experiment with different sizes etc., to see what works for you. ~ karen

  72. Bill Grigg says:

    Eggsquisite!

  73. Valerie says:

    Congratulations on your completion of this project. What a role model you are, basically demonstrating to us that with persistence and humour one can accomplish their dreams – whatever that dream is…so very well done!

  74. Tess says:

    The coop is just darling! Did you manage to get a scale in anticipation of eggs? You deserve Grade A Extra Large for all your efforts.

    • Karen says:

      Hey Tess – I was just at a flea/antique market yesterday looking for an egg scale. Didn’t find one, but I found a cute little antique whisk for cleaning out the crevices of the coop doors and some nice blue mason jars! :) ~ karen

  75. That is the most stylish chicken coop I’ve ever seen. You did a lovely job! Your chickens are well and truly spoiled.

  76. Jen says:

    That is the coolest fucking coop I’ve ever seen! WOW!!

  77. Amanda says:

    Was not expecting it to look like this. Simply stunning! This should be featured on design blogs all over the world.

  78. Ruth says:

    Oh wow! I bet Tuco is kicking himself now for piping up… but, then again, more hens probably equal more bliss. 😀

    I have seen many coops in my lifetime, but this is OFF.THE.CHARTS! Fabulous!

  79. misskher says:

    Holy crud. You completely and utterly outdid yourself!!

  80. Susan says:

    Good job! The door w/ pulleys is GENIUS!

  81. Linda says:

    Un-freakin-believable. I was eager to see what it would look like and never would have imagined this. You are amazing!

  82. Nancy says:

    Very awesome Karen..only you could make a chicken coop that looks like a natural part of your back yard decor..may you have many eggs as your reward…;-)

  83. Ann says:

    Don’t you know some nice architectural student who could draw up plans of your coop? Maybe you could sell plans to pay said student and no, I’m not such a student. Anyway, spectacular!

  84. Kat says:

    I knew you’d create an amazing coop, but…SERIOUSLY…WOW!!! This blew my mind. It works seamlessly with your garden design. Brava!!!

  85. Emi says:

    Absolutely stunning. I would be a very happy and lucky chicken indeed if I was one of your girls. May they lay and lay for you. It is beutiful, functional, and designed with all of the girls and your needs in mind. Just beautiful. Congratulations on a huge winner!

  86. Another Karen says:

    Really nice! And who knew hens ate watermelon?

    The coop is so clean. Definitely cleaner than my daughter’s room!

  87. Courtney says:

    I never thought I’d say this but that is one beautiful chicken coop! It almost makes me want to have chickens (we certainly have the space for them)…almost.

    Now to you penthouse chicks: get to work on laying some eggs!

  88. Susan says:

    Everyone else seems to have used all the best superlatives, so I’ll have to resort to making up one – Superkarenocdistichennycoopilocious! You took the best parts of both designs and melded them into a stunning, practical and unique addition to your home and home for your ladies. If Opra doesn’t call, she’s got no heart anymore.

  89. Kate says:

    This is freaking AWEsome! Your chicken’s home is cooler than mine!

  90. Heather says:

    Holy crap. You didn’t just make a chicken coop, you made a chicken coop look *good*. I guess after seeing your backyard makeover I shouldn’t have been surprised. You take such care in your work, you should be proud of yourself!

  91. Amazing job! That first egg is going to taste soo good!

  92. mary c says:

    speechless. I was waiting and WAITING for you to post the final pictures. I thought about asking, but wisely knew you would not post until it was all a little bit past you. It is amazing, beautiful, stylish, chic, functional, quirky, and all you.

    Congratulations on your achievement!

  93. KAREN. Oh. My.

    This is stunning! Job well done. Seriously, you should be proud for the design and accomplishment after so many months of hard work. This structure is modern yet rustic and oh so beautiful! Your girls are living in more style than me! And I love that little gravemarker for Lucky.
    So, if you had to do it all over again, would you do it? Loaded question, I know. :)

    • Karen says:

      Holly – LOL. Um. I don’t know. Way too much work to do while also writing a blog and taking care of a 170 year old house. On the other hand, I couldn’t have afforded to have someone build the kind of coop that I wanted. I know one thing. If I ever move, that coop is coming with me! ~ karen

  94. Robin says:

    Congratulations, Karen. The coop looks lovely and you are amazing! Now, there is no more excuse for them to live as welfare chickens- those chicas need to lay some eggs!

  95. Kharina says:

    I don’t think I have ever said this… that is one helluva sexy coop. I have seen quite a few, and this is without a doubt the sexiest coop. Evah.

  96. Julie shinnick says:

    Oh no you can’t eat the first egg!
    It will have to be preserved and framed!
    Well done you!

  97. kristin says:

    I’m so jealous! I used to have chickens, but I haven’t had any since moving to the city. I’m wondering whether you’re going to overwinter your chickens. Do you have some sort of plan for that?

    • Karen says:

      Kristin – They’ll stay in the coop. The portion with the roost and access to the nesting box. It’ll be warm enough with their bodies and the addition of a 40 watt light bulb (which will also provide more light for them during the day to encourage egg laying). In the fall I’m going to insulate under the coop and the roof of it. That’s the plan. :) ~ karen

  98. Mike says:

    I figured it’d be great, but never expected the skylight. Brilliant!

  99. Shauna says:

    UN.BE.LIEVABLE!!!! You did such a great job! I love our coop, but yours is outstanding! Seriously, really. So many cool details. You really thought it out well and made sure to have it as functional as it is beautiful.

    Don’t worry, your girls will be laying soon. We bought our girls when they were 21 weeks old. It took about 2 weeks before the first one started laying. While we were on vacation this past week, another one started laying. Now, we’re just waiting for the 3rd one to drop;) We have Rhode Island Reds too.

    Finally, is there anything cuter than a fuzzy little chicken butt?

  100. susan w says:

    Extraordinary (you’ll notice I didn’t turn it into a chicken product pun). It is beautiful, functional and highly inventive. Makes me wish I was a hen (minus eating caterpillars). I like the headless hen shot. This is a remarkable accomplishment.

    pyuckk pyucck pyuckk squaaaawnk*

    (translation thanks mom karen)

    speaks a little goose there

  101. Chau says:

    Wow! It’s a scoop MANSION! Outstanding job Karen. I hope your chickens appreciate all the hard labor you put in to build their nest. They are a bunch of lucky chickens for sure.

  102. Kasia says:

    I want to live in the coop!!! It’s perfect!!!

  103. kelliblue says:

    Un. CLUCKIN. Believable! That is gorgeous, Karen, GOR-JUS! The paint! The lamps! The ladder! The storage! It’s prettier than some homes. You done good, girl!

    If I were one to believe in reincarnation, I used to want to come back as my own or my friend’s cats (totally spoiled). But now…I think I’d like to come back as one of your chickens…cos they are definitely spoiled! (watermelon? hello?!)

  104. Sebrah says:

    I hope my girls don’t take a sneak peak at my computer screen right now (OK, they’re in bed on their not so nice perches and seriously not so nice coop) which is just as well … they would be totally GREEN with jealousy, as am I.
    F A B U L O U S !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  105. Laurie says:

    Did you see this article with links to diapers and leashes for city chickens

    ?

  106. Rosalie Davis says:

    The chicken coop looks beautiful. You will be enjoying your chickens for a long time to come.

  107. ellen says:

    Gorgeous coop – well done you!

  108. Amy says:

    That’s the coolest chicken coop. Ever.

  109. Amie says:

    Karen, the coop is truly a master piece! Love the exterior colour! I hope those ladies start laying for you soon! x

  110. Stephanie says:

    I only happened onto your blog about a month ago and have much enjoyed your articles and very special brand of sassy and irreverent humor. My point being, I felt that perhaps I didn’t have as much invested in seeing this project come full term as many of your other readers/friends.
    Well. I can assure you that my emotional investment was seriously underestimated. I truly cried tears of JOY at seeing this! It’s so lovely! That you would put such time and effort and caring into something for “your girls” is just so beautiful. I can be as bitchy and sassy as the next girl, but that just took it right out of me. I think many things in our lives express themselves as our art. And this my friend is one of your greatest works. Sincerest congratulations.
    Now. What are you going to tomorrow:P

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Stephanie! I needed that. Someone posted my coop to another board and one particular person there (not an AODS reader) said the coop was for a rich wannabe chicken farmer with too much money. I was stunned. Um … not rich. Not even close to rich. And they seemed to consider the fact that I wanted something nice to look at and nice for my chickens to be elitist. It was very bizarre indeed. And you’re right. Doing something like this is my form of art. Thanks! And I’m glad you somehow found my site! ~ karen

      • Shauna says:

        People are dumb and jealous. Just because your chicken coop doesn’t look like a lean-to shanty, outhouse thrown together with leftover pieces of wood found in the middle of swamp land does not make you elitist. ‘Real’ farmers like to laugh at us urban chicken owners, but let’s get real people, I live on 1/10th of an acre and have summer parties in my backyard – I don’t want my coop nor my yard to look like an abandoned outhouse. I think urban chicken owners like us will and are changing the views people have of chickens and chicken ownership and that’s a good thing. I could go on and on about how people pamper their dogs and that seems to be okay, but I’ll stop my rant now with one final thing…
        You rock and that person who said that is the elitist one for believing that all coops must fit within their ‘crap-style’ criteria.
        Over and out

  111. Olga says:

    wow this is amazing! I’m surprised it took you only few months to built it. It looks like there is soo many neat little things all over the place. I’m actually thinking to built something like that for my 3 years old men to crawl in and maybe when he get’s older get some chickens. Or maybe get chickens and keep my 3 year old in there with them. Im sure he would love that lol. You need to post pictures and show us at least the first few steps of the coop.

    • Karen says:

      Olga – I’m going to show some process shots and talk about the construction a little next week. I think this is the perfect place for a 3 year old. I can barely drag myself out of the coop myself it’s so much fun in there with them. Very soothing. And surprisingly, not all that smelly. ~ karen

  112. Phyllis says:

    I love it!!!…What is the material on the ground outside the coup?…Looks amazing!!!

    • Karen says:

      Hey Phyllis – It’s slate. My entire backyard used to be slate, but with the weather here it ended up disintegrating it so a few years ago I ripped it all up and put down square-cut flagstone. The slate here is what was salvageable. Plus I used a bunch of it to make a waterfall for my pond. You can see it all here if you haven’t before … http://www.theartofdoingstuff.com/backyard . ~ karen!

  113. monet says:

    I don’t normally comment on blogs, but oh my goodness. that is a beautiful coop. we are in the process of building a coop right now, and while ours will look nice, it is not yours. yours is a thing of beauty.

  114. Sherri Jackson says:

    I think a nice old watering can sitting outside the chicken coop would be a nice edition.

  115. Amy in StL says:

    I never expected to find a great deck idea on a chicken coop. But I need some fun lighting for my deck and those lanterns are great. So what’s up with the candles? Are they dusk to dawn? On a timer? Actual candles that you light for your girls? I’ve seen some kind of automatic candle pillar on the QVC (I know…) site I think.

    • Karen says:

      Amy – The candles are battery operated. They’re on a timer and come on whenever you want and then stay on for 5 hours. They take 2 “C” batteries so they last forever, unlike battery candles that require “AA” batteries. They’re great. I absolutely love them. It’s great to come into the backyard at night and the candles are glowing automatically! Certain sites online sell them … google it! ~ karen

  116. Christina says:

    So freaking pretty. I have to admit. Hearing your frustrations about this coop over the last several months I started to imagine that it wasn’t going well and therefore wouldn’t turn out well. Just goes to show that even amidst frustration the end product can be outstanding! Especially with gumption like yours. Love it!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Chriistina – There were a few screw ups, but the building actually went really smoothly. It’s just a lot of work for one person to accomplish along with doing everything else that needs to be done on any given day. My sister helped and those days were a relief! ~ karen

  117. Faith says:

    I am also somewhat new to your blog having been referred by someone who knew I am getting chicks. Here’s my take: Having something nice, and doing it yourself is by no means something for the rich or elitist. Your absolutely beautiful coop reminds me so much of something the Shakers or Amish would build. Completely functional, completely beautiful. Do not listen to the naysayers. They are looking for buttons to push so that they can see their pain on someone else.

    Also, LOVE your blog!!!!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Faith! I’m not too worried about the single naysayer. :) I love my coop! And so do the chickens! I’m so glad you found my blog! Enjoy your stay. :) ~ karen

  118. Kim says:

    How does that chicken stand on the edge of a bucket?! You have circus chickens!

    But seriously – what a beautiful job!

  119. Stacey says:

    I think that is quite possibly the most beautiful coop I’ve ever seen! I love all the little darling touches and have really enjoyed reading your journey. Thank you for posting, I hope for fresh eggs for you soon!

  120. marti says:

    Wow. I leave for two days and come back to this? Karen, it’s really spectacular. Blown away. If they don’t start laying immediately out of pure, sweet love for their new home, you might consider giving them a little straw or hay in there. You know… in case they feel an instinctual need to next? Every chicken I grew up with laid their eggs in a nest they built out of bits of hay or straw.

    Of course, I’ve been out of town, so maybe they’re already laying and I just haven’t caught up yet.

    But only because I was so WOWED! Seriously, a CLUCKING work of art, Karen!

  121. Sarah says:

    Karen, it is so gorgeous! I’ve been following your blog for a very long time, but this is the first time to comment and I just had to. I got back from vacation and the coop pictures were up and completely made my morning! So exciting! Thanks for sharing all your great ideas and hard work. I can tell you just love those chickens…

    • Karen says:

      Thanks for commenting Sarah! And yup. I’m fond of the chickens. Even though one of them seems to be screaming her head off at the moment. ~ karen

  122. Alicia says:

    so let me just start by saying you are amazing.

    the coop is amazing. the chickens are amazing. the skylight is amazing. all of it.

    I’ve been obsessed with getting chickens of my own for the past few years now, and am so excited to see your super chic coop all finished up, this is exactly the sort of thing I have in mind to fill my barren side yard…

    My only question for you, obviously revealing my amateur skills, is what changes do you make for the winter time? It gets pretty rainy and ugly where I live, and while temps are freezing i’d say high 40s low 50s, and Im trying to plan out a coop to keep cool in summer and warm in winter. any thoughts from you or fellow readers?

    maybe i just practice for my future dream home and build it out of rammed earth…

    • Karen says:

      Hi Alicia – Chickens (depending on the breed) are cold weather hardy. These Rhode Island Reds for example can be in weather that’s below freezing. You just have to make sure their water isn’t frozen over. The heat from their bodies plus a 40 watt light bulb I’m going to install will be enough to keep them comfortable for the winter. Or so I’m told. 😉 ~ karen

  123. Jenny says:

    I am SO impressed. Those are some lucky chickens.
    Congrats on yet another job perfectly done!

  124. Jessica says:

    I have just discovered your blog via a Tweet about this post and am in love!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Jessica – Yeah .. Grace from Design*Sponge Twittered it and all hell broke loose. It seems a bit early to be declaring love but … O.K. … I love you too. Oop. Or did you mean the coop? ~ karen

  125. tkanyemba says:

    What a pretty thing

  126. Linda says:

    Girl thats a five star chicken coop! Maybe you should be building habitats for people. That is just gorgous. Very impressed.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Linda! I think my building days are over. For the next few years anyway! Toooooooo time consuming. I love my coop though. ~ karen

  127. monika says:

    UGH! I’m vascilating between admiraton and neon-green envy. Fabulous job, Karen. You deserve lots of eggs. And a massage.

    • Karen says:

      Monika – I DO deserve a massage! Once I finally get my hair done and can go out in public again that’ll be the first appointment I make! :) ~ karen

  128. Brenda Watts says:

    Karen, I am speechless & terribly envious..great job, it is fantastic..love that you have put details into it to make life for the girls enjoyable…oh just wait until you collect the first eggs..it will be worth the effort.

  129. Alyson says:

    My poor chickens are SO ripped off! I hope they never learn to use a computer or listen to gossip or I’m a dead chicken owner. Dead!
    It’s a cool coop Karen!

  130. Rosanne says:

    I just found your website through Ashely English’s “Small Measure” where she shared the link to this post about the chicken coop — I am blown away, and my response is much like the others — it was jaw dropping — literally!! I just moved to a new home in a different state, and am dreaming about having a garden and chicken coop (with chickens, of course) — yours is definitely inspiring — AND, you may not have plans, but considering the response you got to this, if you could somehow draw up plans for building this, maybe you COULD become rich!
    Anyway, I’m looking forward to seeing the rest of your blog. If the rest of it is as inspiring as this, I will definitely be a regular visitor! Congratulations on a job well done! May it be a very rewarding accomplishment! :o)

    • Karen says:

      Hi Rosanne! Thanks for letting me know about the Ashley English link. I knew she Tweeted it, but didn’t know about the link. Good to know. Love her. There are a few other huge projects on this site (redoing my house, redoing my backyard) but I try to be as excited about the little things. Like a dishsoap dispenser, or a nice hunk of goat cheese, LOL. Welcome to the site and I hope you enjoy the rest. Sometimes I swear. Fair warning. ~ karen

  131. Chris says:

    Kudos Karen! Absolutely beautiful. My chicks (as well as myself) are inspired and envious.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Chris! I’m *really* happy with how it turned out. I’m even happier that the roof doesn’t leak, LOL. ~ karen

  132. Cynde says:

    What a beautiful and well made abode for your girls! I wonder if they “feel” any different than when they were living in the shed, hmmm? I found your blog about 4 months ago and have enjoyed every minute spent here. You might enjoy Alice Walker’s newest book, “The Chicken Chronicles: Sitting with the Angels Who Have Returned with My Memories: Glorious, Rufus, Gertrude Stein, Splendor, Hortensia, Agnes of God, The Gladyses, & Babe: A Memoir” about her time spent with her girls!

  133. Melanie Martin says:

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your coop. So inspiring, thank you for sharing your talent with us. Your chickens look happy and proud of their new home. Congratulations on a beautiful achievement.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Melanie! I’m pretty sure my chickens couldn’t care less about their coop, LOL, but I certainly enjoy looking at it! ~ karen

  134. dawn says:

    wowzers!! what a beautiful chicken coop~ it’s well set up + so functional~ fantastic job!!

  135. Jenny says:

    Hi Karen, first time commenter here. I have recently discovered your blog and I love it. I have a question: how can you keep chickens cool? I love near Phoenix, Arizona and with our summer heat I’ve been hesitant to get chickens. I can barely keep myself from roasting, let alone chickens!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Jenny! I’m so glad you found my site and like it! :) I’ve only had chickens a few months now so I wouldn’t call myself an expert, but I do know that certain breeds are more tolerant to heat/cold than others. From what I gather heat bothers Rhode Island Reds (which is what I have) even more than cold. A couple of times this summer when the temperature got over 100 for an extended period of time (yes it gets that hot here) I put a fan blowing through the vents in their coop at night and set the same fan up in their run during the day. It helped a LOT. I also feed them cool snacks like frozen bananas when it’s really hot. I’ve even gone so far as to put a bunch of pine shavings in a kitty litter pan and wet them down with cold water. Then I’d plunk a chicken in there to let them know it was there and nice and cool. One chicken in particular really took to it. I’m sure you could find some good information on backyardchickens.com. Good luck! ~ karen

  136. Srednivashtar says:

    Your chickens’ house is better than my own…that’s a little depressing.

    Really, you did an awesome job here!

  137. Inspire Me Heather says:

    Your hen house is just gorgeous – I love the colour and the design, well done! I linked this to my chicken coops project post too, for inspiration!

  138. Jen says:

    Assuming the ladies keep their credit cards away from the magnets, I’d say they have a beautiful, safe and practical home. Well done, you.

  139. Pam says:

    Dang woman, you do the most amazing work. Is it hard being that perfect?? LOL Love your posts and I always read your funny first!!

    • Karen says:

      Hah! Thanks Pam. I am currently in my perfect p’jamas eating perfect Ketchup potato chips while watching perfectly trashy television. ~ karen!

  140. Anna says:

    What an amazing coop! I just found you through Nicole from Making It Lovely and I am blown away. I am planning to get chickens this Spring and this project really gets me excited about building me own coop! I live in Michigan and it gets pretty cold here in the winter so we’re planning to build a coop with a rocket stove that can be fueled with sawdust (we know some sawyers who have lots of extra sawdust). But it’s still in the planning stages for now! Good luck with the egg-laying! I’d lay eggs if I lived in a gorgeous coop like that! 😉

    • Karen says:

      Anna – Thanks! I’m so glad you found my site. I’ve already thanked Nicole for heading so many people over here. Keep checking back and I’ll keep letting you know about the chickens and the coop. I am not far from you, in Southern Ontario so I imagines our winters are fairly similar. I plan on insulating under and above the coop with styrofoam insulation and adding a 40 watt lightbulb. I’m not sure you’ll need a heater. Chickens are built for the cold. (some breeds anyway … like Rhode Island Reds, which I have) I’ll keep you posted! And thanks for commenting. :) ~ karen

  141. C says:

    Gorgeous! Where did you source the beautiful lanterns?

  142. Liz S. says:

    I saw your coop “pinned” on Pinterest. I have seen it posted a few times. Just thought you’d be interested in seeing it. When you click on the picture it brings you directly to this blog post. The comment under the pic of the particular post was “holy mother of all chicken coops”.

  143. Heidi says:

    I have to share that my 14 year old daughter commented that if the coop had a monogram of the chickens initials, it could have been a photo from pottery barn!

  144. t.bird says:

    this might be the most beautiful chicken coop i have ever seen.

    as in- i want teh husband to tear down our chicken coop & make me this one.
    the fact that he spent 3 months on ours matters not to me- lol.

    but seriously. i want to live in that coop.

    http://www.lookatthebirds.com/2011/04/part-iv.html (ours- but not as pretty as yours)

    • Karen says:

      t.bird – hah! My coop is a combination of the 2 most beautiful coops I’d ever seen! :) I like your chicken coop! It suits its surroundings. And it’s BIG! I like the rustic feel. Keep it! ~ karen

  145. Sharyl says:

    I love your coop, if you are new to chickens there is a wonderful website called backyardchickens.com where you can find a tremendous amount of information on raising chickens. Good luck to you and the eggs will come! Sharyl

  146. Carrborogirl says:

    Came here via Apartment therapy, and I have to say, this is the Ritz of chicken coops! It’s so beautiful, well planned and large and airy! If I was a chicken, I would aspire to live here.

    I absolutely love the picture of the girls sharing a watermelon wedge!!!

    • Karen says:

      Carrborogirl – Thanks! The girls LOVE watermelon. Only second to corn on the cob. Thanks for the heads up on Apartment Therapy! I didn’t know they’d picked it up. ~ karen

  147. tracy says:

    karen,
    i just love love love your website. what a pleasure watching your chickens at dinner time. it’s adorable that they go to bed at 7:30 every night. love the pics of them eating the watermelon and the one with the great perch and the chickens furry bottom sticking up. they really have a fab life living with you! can’t wait to see when the start laying eggs.
    we so enjoyed our birdbath this summer we made inspired by you. the one with the 3 pieces of recycled wood with the white porcelein bowl on top. you are such a go getter!! keep up the great work!!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Tracy! Glad to hear you made the birdbath. I only had room to keep one of the 3 I made, so I gave away the other two and kept the one with the Ikea candle bowl. Thanks again for the comment and the compliments! ~ karen

  148. Doreen says:

    I don’t know you, but you rock! I’m considering chickens for my backyard as an ongoing series of distractions from being widowed at 45. Thanks for the inspiration!

  149. karen ho fatt says:

    Nice job! Classy abode for chickens- i am sure they are thankful for it!

  150. Jamie B. says:

    That is not a chicken coop. That is a chicken palace. I can never let my chickens see this, lol. Amazing job.

  151. Pam Ballard says:

    Hi, okay this is just adorable…do you have plans to make this? I found this on Pinterest and had to go to a few pins to find you. My garden needs a chicken coop and I just this this one is the cutest. Nice work! Lucky babies…..Pam

    • Karen says:

      Hi Pam – Thanks! Sorry, but I don’t have any plans for the coop. I just built it on the fly. Anyone who knows a little about building should be able to copy this one fairly easily though. :) ~ karen

  152. Kathleen Anuca says:

    Absolutely stunning! I’ve never seen such an impressive chicken coop…. Definitely a luxury suite for The Girls! You deserve a huge pat on the back for a job very-well done!

    K8

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Kate! It is pretty stunning, LOL. I’m very, very happy with it. Best of all is it’s fantastically functional. Easy access to bedding and food and the nesting box and easy to clean. I couldn’t be more pleased. ~ karen

  153. Kathleen says:

    Wouldn’t be surprised if Martha Stewart would be contacting you soon…. :)

    K8

  154. Caren says:

    Wowzas! That is one beautiful piece of chicken coopness! It makes me want to have chickens, or perhaps build myself a coop to live in. ‘Cause it’s that pretty!
    I am in awe that you created this functional piece of art (which I think it is). You have the luckiest Girls. I think I may be jealous of chickens. 😉
    Caren

    • Karen says:

      Caren – Thanks! I”m pretty happy with how the coop turned out to say the least! But don’t be jealous of the chickens. They walk on their own poop all day long. :) ~ karen

  155. Jess says:

    Hi there, Would you be willing to share the plans? I’m in desperate need of a chicken coop and I’m severely lacking in imagination. This is amazing! I will pay you!

    • Karen says:

      Jess – If I had plans I would gladly share/sell/give them to you. Sadly, I don’t. I made it up as I went which is why it took me around 3 months to build, LOL. If you aren’t handy and you don’t plan on doing it yourself, any regular old carpenter/handyman could build it without plans because of how basic it is. Good luck and if you have any specific questions about it lemme know! ~ karen

  156. Kelly Bacher says:

    OMG!!!!!!! Yes please!!! I want one!!

  157. Pam Hicks says:

    Lovely! It is good to find other chick-lovers who believe that a coop can be functional AND beautiful. My son built a great coop for me, and I put my own touch on it with paint. Your girls seem to be loved and very happy-a great combo for egg-laying! Mine started laying at about 5-6 months old. Now we have more eggs than we can eat. Enjoy your new hobby.

  158. Lisa says:

    Really love your coop. My children would like to raise a few chickens and I’m excited to find a coop as beautiful as yours. I am so opposed to the slanted roof type coop and have been searching online for weeks looking for something interesting, visually appealing, and well, yes, darn it, stylish. Thanks for the inspiration. Now, to try to use some of your ideas in designing our own coop…

  159. Lisa says:

    Still love to come back to this site and look at your beautiful chicken coop. We’re on our way to building a similar coop down here in Texas. It will have many similarities to yours…hope you don’t mind.:) Just read through some of the posts above and realize you are from Canada, and not just Canada, but southern Ontario. No wonder I love your taste in design…I’m from there too…Windsor actually, but living in Texas for the past 20 years. Thanks again for such an inspiring piece of Art…and dang it, well, thanks for being Canadian too!!

    • Karen says:

      Lisa – LOL. Well … I can’t take a whole lot of credit for being Canadian. What with being born here and all. However … glad to hear you’ve found a home in Texas! Good luck with the coop. ~ karen

  160. Leah says:

    Whoa, my hens would be so jealous.

    You and your husband are quite the architects!

    • Karen says:

      Leah – Husband? My husband had nothing to do with this coop, LOL. Other than running to fetch me wood at the lumberyard. :) ~ karen

  161. karen! says:

    That is the most beautiful chicken coop I have ever seen!!! I love your chickens too :)You and your chickens are stylin’!

  162. Laura says:

    Well. Now I just feel like my chickens are slummin’ it. 😉 That chicken…home…is AMAZING. If your chicken coop looks like that, I can’t imagine what your own home is like! Those are some sexy chicken legs, btw. 😉 BEAUTIFUL chickens, though! Are they just regular Rhode Island Reds? I have 5 of those, and a white one (leghorn?), and a mixed-breed rooster. He’s black with orange & green & red & white feathers. :)

    • Karen says:

      Hi Laura! They were supposed to be regular Rhode Island Reds but they seem to be a mix of something. (see here) OH! Also, here’s my house. Which unlike the chicken coop, *doesn’t* have a skylight. :) ~ karen

  163. Daphne says:

    I love your coop! And the dirt-bath is such a great idea. Will introduce this idea to my chickens in the morning.
    And the eggs? When spring comes you will be surprised how much eggs one hen can lay each week. 😉

    • Karen says:

      Daphne – I have a light up for them so they continue to lay for their first year. I’m getting close to 2 dozen eggs in 1 week from 4 chickens! I’m pretty darn pleased with that. Oh! And thanks. I love my coop too, LOL. I’m getting pretty excited about decorating it for Christmas! ~ karen

  164. Those hens are soooo happy and content…will they ever feel the need to lay? wonderful post…found you through pinterest.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Geraldine! I just came in from giving them a pancake. And oh yes … they’re laying. :) About 24 eggs a week from 4 hens. ~ karen!

  165. Gloria says:

    These chickens are actually living in Coup Heaven. Really did a great job. Lucky Chickens!!!

  166. Chef Debbi says:

    Very impressive coop!

  167. GoneToCarolina says:

    WOW! This is sooooo beautiful. You did an amazing job building this, right down to the smallest details. I put my order in with my husband for one! We live in Germany now but when we move back to The States, I have to have chickens!

  168. Katie says:

    Hi,

    I noticed that your coop seems close to your house.
    Do you notice the smell? How do you deal with that?

    • Karen says:

      Hi Katie – Nope. There isn’t much smell at all unless it’s really, really damp and wet out. And even then you can only smell it when you’re outside by the coop. Definitely not when you’re inside. ~ karen!

  169. The COOLEST Coop in the world!

    May all your gardens grow,
    Jan

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Jan! Now that you mention it … I had really bad luck with my acorn squash last year, LOL. Here’s hoping my garden grows a bit better next year. ~ karen

  170. lisa says:

    I want one for my chickens and my 11 year olds rabbits…. they are perfect!

  171. susan says:

    I’m so impressed! That is the CLASSIEST chicken coop ever!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Susan. I’m really happy with how it turned out. More plans for it and the small area surrounding it in the spring! Glad you found my site. ~ karen!

  172. Kodie says:

    I am LOVING your chicken coop! It is my tiny little backyard dream to have chickens but I don’t think I could swing it with my lifestyle…. but a girl can dream, can’t she? And live vicariously through people like you! Thanks!

  173. Debbie says:

    That is the most beautiful coop I’ve ever seen. You need to make plans and sell them! Or share them! Great job!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Debbie! But I’m afraid there won’t be any plans. I had the coop planned in my head and then made it up (in terms of buildin git) as I went along. :( Easy enough for someone to copy though. ~ karen!

  174. Jenna says:

    I cannot believe how awesome chickencoops can look. I think I would like to use your design and Heather Bullard’s design for inspiration for my own chicken coop. I was planning on making one for our dinky backyard. After seeing your post, the idea is much more simplified than I originally feared. I think that I’m going to make one this year for sure. Thanks for the inspiration!

  175. Francesca LaFae says:

    That is the most fantastic hen house I have ever seen. Please make one for me immediately. 😉

  176. Kristy says:

    awesome hen house!!! You did a fab of a job!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Kristy! I was just out there cleaning out some chicken crap. It’s not nearly as fabulous when you’re cleaning out chicken crap, LOL. Still love it though. :) ~ karen

  177. Francesca LaFae says:

    Spring is fine, no rush, you have a couple of weeks 😉 Seriously, it’s fab, I have made a few coops/kennels/vivariums in my time, but nothing as posh as that! And it is most annoying when your masterpiece is completed, and the ingrates you toiled for casually poop all over it. I remember the feeling well.

  178. barbecue says:

    that is some luxury chicken coop. Making me think about getting my tools out and doing something myself. Thx
    Keep up the great site

    • Karen says:

      Thanks barbecue. Maybe you want to borrow my tools, ’cause after the coop I’ve pretty much hung up my tool belt for the next oh … decade or so. :) ~ karen

  179. Christi says:

    This is fabulousity at its best! I am so inspired I finally bought my dream 1/2 acre in Sonoma County, CA and plan to build a chicken coop–thanks for the inspiration! Good eating and feed the girls a little extra feed from me!

  180. Lori R. says:

    Holy mother of chicken scratch! I’ve kept chickens for many, many years, and have NEVER seen a chicken mansion like yours. Mine live in an old steel shed. They would think they died and went to heaven if this appeared in their yard, They would miss is the 30 x 50 foot enclosure they get to wander in every day. Also all the homegrown lettuce, cabbage, and other vegetables.

    With regard to maintenance, you have made it incredibly easy for yourself to clean and maintain. AND gorgeous. I’ve seen a lot of coops, but this is definitely the winner. And you’re a NOVICE? Well played, City Woman!

    And if you all think chicken butts are cute, wait until you see the first eggs out of the chute!

    • Karen says:

      Lori R. – Thanks! Yup. I’m only part city slicker. I guess that accounts for the chicken coop success. This is an older post of mine, so the chicks have been laying eggs for months now. There’s a video of it on here somewhere if you look in my videos. Please. No more mention of your 30 x 50 foot enclosure. My gals don’t need to know about things like that. >___< ~ karen!

  181. Jill Williams says:

    I LOVE this chicken coop. It makes me want chickens.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Jill. I just took a peek out at the girls. They’re all nesting comfortably on their driftwood under the heat lamp. ~ karen!

  182. Meg says:

    STUNNING! I’m obviously late to the party in noticing this. Did you have plans that you worked off of or just wing it? (har har).
    I’m going to build one this summer and this is my inspiration!
    Thank you for any info you have!
    –Meghan

    • Karen says:

      Meghan – As you so aptly pointed out … I winged it. :) I knew the space I had to work with (around 11 long by 3 1/2′ wide) and just started framing. It’s around 7′ high. I wanted it to be level with my fence or an inch below once the roof was on so you can’t see it from the other side. The only help I can offer you is to make your run as big as possible. You’ll want to let your chickens run around your yard for the first while and then you’ll realize that the yard becomes a complete mess and chickens like to eat every SINGLE plant you own. So … chances are you’ll want to keep them in their run. :) ~ karen

  183. Linda says:

    Hello…I just discovered your blog and fell absolutely in love with your chicken coop and the hens. I know you started some time ago but are the chickens laying eggs and still doing well? Your writing style is charming and very informative. Please keep that great information and pictures coming our way!!

    • Karen says:

      Thank Linda! Yes the “girls” are laying like crazy now. I’ve never had so much fun in my life. They’re hilarious. You should watch my chicken videos under my video category. They’re highly entertaining. ~ karen!

  184. Sherri says:

    Coming in very late on this topic, but my excuse is (and I’m sticking to it!) I’ve just recently found your website. Must admit I have spent much of my day making so many amazing discoveries here!

    Wanted to say I LOVE your coop, and love the idea of having one!! You did an amazing job of it, with so many smart little extras thrown in.

    Just awesome, kudos!!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Sherri! Now that I’ve lived with it for a bit there are a couple of alterations I’ll make in the spring but for the most part … it’s done me and the chickens well. 😉 ~ karen

  185. Helene says:

    This is absolutely the most lovely hens house I have seen.

    I hope it´s ok I blog about it and link to you?!

    I´ll be back :-)

  186. shan says:

    omg you should so sell the plans i want one…better yet i want you to come to australia and build it for me 😛

    • Karen says:

      Oh dear. What a thought! (building another coop … not the Australia part. I’d *love* to go to Australia) If you click on “Chez Poulet”on the right side bar, you can buy plans for Heather Bullard’s coop, which was one of my inspiration coops. ~ karen!

  187. Summer Whitford says:

    You are an inspiration. I am amazed the incredible talented women there are on the web building beautiful nests for themselves and their chickens, taking exquisite photographs, and designing wonderful things.

    Your work should be on TV and in books.

    When we finish with our house reno my dream is to have a chicken coop. Thanks to your gorgeous inspiration, I will put my crafty skills to the test too.

    Keep up the fantastic work.

  188. Michelle says:

    Karen,

    Delightfully, I have found your non-disgusting version of a “Coop” and am borrowing the idea and running with it!

    My hubs thankfully didn’t drop chicks in my lap (although he did bring home goats once to mow the lawn~ he is thankfully insane enough to stay married to a loon like me!) He has however begged every spring for the last 10 years for… chickens.

    I finally gave in, thanks to your amazingly beautiful coop. I have also linked it on my very sad and shabby blog. Hope you don’t mind… but well… your blog is again, delightful & very therapeutic!

    Its linked here http://thatsheisme.blogspot.com/2012/03/coop-deville-and-other-fowl-humor.html

    Maybe one day my sad attempt at a blog, will grow into something spectacular like yours!

    Thanks for the COOP idea!
    Much love!

    Michelle

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Michelle! If you’re looking for plans, one of the coops I based my coop off of sells their plans. In fact, they’re right over on the right hand side bar of my site. “Chez Poulet”. The coop belongs to Heather Bullard, a contributing editor to Country Living Magazine. As someone who build the coop with no plans at ALL, it’d probably go a lot smoother if you used them, LOL. I think they’re $35. Cheep! ~ karen

  189. laura says:

    This is amazing! (It puts my little DIY chicken coop to shame) Very inspiring.

  190. Angie says:

    Wow, oh wow! This is just amazing, and beautiful, as are your chickies. I want a coop, and chickens SO bad. This is the best looking coop I’ve ever seen, and I love how resourceful you were. Right up my alley. I may use your idea as inspiration and just go ahead and take the plunge. (love the skylight…how thoughtful!) lol

  191. christianne says:

    That is the coolest thing I have ever seen.

  192. trina harrison says:

    You are truly blesses!!! Easy…Breezy…Beautiful

  193. April says:

    Hi, I was wondering if you designed that or went by plans? I am thinking of building one and I want something similar to look beautiful in my yard. :)

    April

    • Karen says:

      Hi April – I designed the coop myself and just sort of built it from the ground up. I based it off of a couple of coops I had seen on the Internet, including Heather Bullard from Country Living Magazine’s chicken coop. She sells her plans on my site. If you look to the right sidebar where all my small ads are one of them is called Chez Poulet. That’s her chicken coop plans for sale. If her plans had been for sale at the time I was building I definitely would have bought them. Building without plans is a bit of a pain! ~ karen

  194. Mandee Wells says:

    This is the most amazing coop I have ever seen! I will be attempting my own coop as soon as we close on our ranch!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Mandee. I just added an extra feature over the weekend to it actually. I’ll post about it in a couple of weeks. A ranch sounds fantastic! :) ~ karen

  195. Danut Fitiu says:

    Ok, so… That is a coop or a house? 😀
    Great design, and great colours!

  196. W. Hannah says:

    Really nice design/construction/use of materials… gave me too darn many ideas.. now I am gonna have to go make trap doors for the chicken house I am making… !!!

  197. Kymmaree says:

    If you paint that wire black (at least on the outside) with enamel paint, you will a much clearer view of your chickens in their palace. Well done!

  198. Sarah Dye says:

    Freakin’ Awesome! And beautiful to boot. Changes my whole view on chicken coops. Great job!

  199. Sarah says:

    I love LOVE this chicken coop. I desire it. We are headed back to town, and we need a coop for our girls. Although I covet this exact coop, I will have to settle for something bought off of Craigslist. I will take a few of your ideas, though!

    Beautifully done.

    • Karen says:

      Sarah – Thanks! Love my coop too, LOL. If you click on the “Chez Poulet” ad on my right hand sidebar, Heather Bullard sells the plans for her chicken coop. Her coop is one of the coops I based mine on. It has a more traditional roofline and colour, but basically very similar. ~ karen!

  200. Chris says:

    I’m not normally one to comment on blog posts, but THAT is the most amazing chicken coop I’ve ever seen! Well done!!!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Chris. I’m not normally one to build chicken coops. Heh. It worked out well. Best part … it’s really easy to keep clean. Chickens aren’t known for their exemplary personal hygiene. ~ karen!

  201. Judy says:

    I love your chicken coop. What are the dimensions of the coop?. How did the chickens handle the winter without insulation? Thanks

    • Karen says:

      Hi Judy – I’m not positive but the dimensions are around 7′ high by almost 4′ wide by 10′ long. Somewhere thereabouts anyway. I think the measurements are in the post (but I could be mistaken). They did fine and dandy this winter, but I did insulate the coop at the beginning of the winter. Just quickly threw up styrofoam insulation (2″) and put bristol board over it, LOL. This fall I’ll be insulating it properly. The insulation did a LOT in terms of keeping the coop cool this summer. It’s been a HOT summer. ~ karen

  202. Lisa W says:

    WOW! This is simply beautiful! I need to build our rabbits a new hutch and now I have some inspiration!

  203. Peggy Zahrte says:

    This is just amazing. I believe even the evil raccoons could not murder my chickens in this coop. Very neat and very, very organized.

  204. Debbie Hanson says:

    I came across this on my facebook page I think it was from Better Homes and Gardens (not on my facebook page to verify). Anyway, this is the type of coop I would love to have for my 20 chickens. The man that made mine is 73 years old and he made it out of old wood and tin roof. Really difficult to keep cool in the summer as I have to hose off the rose several times a day and I learned along with the barn fan and jugs of frozen water my chickens also like their ice pools to cool off. Although my coop is large enough for them, I really don’t like his idea of a coop. I wanted something cute for them, they are not just my chickens and first chickens they are my pets. I have names for 4 of them. I even sign night night to them and pet them everyday. Also I noticed the fake eggs being white, I have Long Island Reds and the eggs are brownish (all shades). Thanks for such a creative way to make your girls feel special.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Debbie! Thanks. I still love my coop and the girls do too. I’m decorating it for fall today. I’d love to know if my coop was on the Better Homes and Gardens page! I’m gonna have to find out somehow. ~ karen!

  205. Alan says:

    one thing you should know if you put the water feeder up on blocks4 to 6 inches its easier for the chickens to drink and keeps it cleaner

  206. Sherry says:

    So clever and beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

  207. Suzi says:

    Oh my goodness! I L.O.V.E. your coop!!!!!!!!
    its so perfect!!!!
    I just finished my coop.
    I may have to borrow some of your ideas to add more to mine
    Please take a look at mine. Id love to hear from you. You have such amazing taste!!!!
    http://choresandchandeliers.blogspot.com/2012/10/yes-i-have-wreath-on-my-chicken-coop.html

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Suzi – I *did* have a look. Your coop is beautiful! Love it. I’m jealous of he electricity. I run it to mine with an extension cord. :( It’s just not the same. And you’re right. You do indeed need electricity for lights at Christmas. The Christmas Coop is a thing to behold. :) ~ karen!

  208. Anna says:

    You are an inspiration !

    • Karen says:

      LOL, thanks Anna. I wish my chickens were as impressed. Maybe they’d be a bit tidier. They just poop all over it. :) ~ karen

  209. Absolutely beautiful and amazing work. Truly something to be proud of

  210. Roxana says:

    I love tour coop ….. Do you have the design? I want one like this as a gift to my mom

  211. Keith says:

    Hey Karen,

    Impressive is an understatement and I love your approach to design! We are in the planning stages of our coop and might *steal* a tip or two from your blog. I am interested to learn what kind of wood you used for the exterior? Is that cedar?

    Thanks!

    Keith

    • Karen says:

      Hi Keith – Thank! Feel free to steal away. The exterior is spruce fence boards that I stained. Good luck with your coop. ~ karen!

  212. Alice DeRoche says:

    Handing these photos over to my husband, may want it at the top of the “honey do” list…giggle…awesome job!!! I used to raise chickens on our “gentleman farm many years ago… sold the eggs loved them. Do you have a rooster? Love that cockle doddle doo at 5 am every day!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Alice. NO! Definitely no rooster. If you search “Tuco” in my search bar you’ll hear all bout it. :) ~ karen

  213. Sharon says:

    This is beautiful. So,much care and consideration has been put into it that I can’t help but to feel admiration. I feel the love!
    Keep up the attitude!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Sharon! I’m pretty sure I love it more than the hens do. But that’s O.K. I”m the one looking at it all day. They’re busy looking in the dirt for bugs. :) ~ karen!

  214. I know this is a crazy old post, but I just saw this on pinterest this weekend, so it’s brand new to me! HOLY COW, that is the most gorgeous chicken coop in the history of ever. I want it! ha! 😉 Seriously though, I love it so much. I have total coop envy.

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Jennifer! That’s how I felt when I saw the two coops that inspired me. I was close to tears I wanted them so bad, LOL. Oh! And you’re never too late to give a compliment. :) ~ karen!

  215. April says:

    Where did you keep the chicks while you were building the coop?

  216. Amber says:

    Absolutely beautiful coop! Thanks for the inspiration! Hope my coop is half as lovely when it’s finished!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Amber. I’m sure it will be! And remember … when in doubt … add bale of straw. Bales of straw make everything look better. ~ karen!

  217. Sherry says:

    Makes me wish I was Chicken living at your house.

  218. Heather! says:

    Wow! This is my dream coop! I plan to get chickens (four actually), in the next few years, and I hope I can make one like this. Thanks for sharing!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Heather! I was just out cleaning up their bedding as a matter of fact. Makes really good compost! ~ karen

  219. Donna Doucette says:

    Well Done,love the detail and thought out plan,I have hens for years now but when the time comes to renew their home I will certainly be taking into consideration some of your ideas! Hope you do not mind! Great Job!

  220. Amy says:

    Beautiful! What color paint it that?

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Amy – It’s a slate coloured black that I had custom mixed to match the slate in my backyard. So I’m afraid I can’t tell you exactly what colour it is. I can tell you it’s Benjamin Moore stain though! :/ ~ karen!

  221. Jerry Davis says:

    Just finisned my coop..Started in March,2013 and finished in June 2013. What injuries did you suffer?

    I have a sciatic nerve problem and a rotator cuff problem since undertaking my construction..

    Love your coop

    Jerry

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Jerry. I suffered a fat lip and a VERY deep cut across the top of my index finger which should have been stitched but instead was glued together by the fella. I still have problems with it. ~ karen!

  222. Faye says:

    That is the sexiest looking coop I’ve seen. I WANT IT. See, my dream is to be able to have a nice house, a chicken coop, a hedgehog, a German Shepard, a kitten, a some finches, and a miniature milk goat, and not live in the middle of nowhere 2 hrs. from the grocery store. This might sound weird, but I’ve been wondering which neighborhood you live in–it doesn’t seem rural or overly suburban. Haha, I’d appreciate the food for daydreams.

  223. Krys says:

    I found your blog on a Pinterest fluke and I must say that by far your coop is definitely one of the prettiest ones I’ve ever seen. I haven’t seen many but this one definitely takes the cake :)
    I hope your girls lay plenty of delicious eggs in the near future!
    Cheers,
    Krys

  224. wrybread says:

    Hey Karen —

    I’m not sure if you read comments two years after the original post but I just had to write (it’s my first blog comment to anyone – ever!) and tell you that your coop is the bomb! I researched hundreds of coops before we built ours and I wish I had seen yours before we started. It’s fantastic! I’ve bookmarked this page in case we ever build another.
    Thanks for posting and the great ideas — love the pulley!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Wrybread – I *do* read comments after 2 years.:) I’m always notified of comments whether they’re on old or new posts. And thanks! I still love my coop too! ~ karen

  225. cathleen fortune says:

    Karen, your pullets WILL LAY.
    Your coop is thoughtful as well as beautiful.

    My darling 12-yr old Polish Bantam just passed away this spring…last of 5 girls. She hadn’t laid for a few years…retired…
    but I didn’t care. She was a fabulous bird.
    I will have more chickens next year…My only concern for you is the magnets. Raccoons are evil and have amazing strength. I double locked my pen.
    If you haven’t watched “The Natural History of the Chicken” (on netflix) do so. Thanks for sharing your effort.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Cathleen – I laughed when I read your comment. That post is over 2 years old. So my chickens have been laying for quite a while now, LOL! The raccoons definitely haven’t been able to get into the coop. The magnets are *extremely* strong. If I’m not having a good day I can’t even get the coop doors open, LOL. You need to grasp both handles on both doors and pull HARD. Just pulling one handle and the doors will not open. I’m sorry about your Polish Bantam. That’s amazing that she lived until 12 though! I know when Cuddles (my favourite) dies I’ll be a complete mess. I love her. ~ karen!

  226. katie says:

    How do you install the rare earth magnets?

  227. Just me says:

    Think I have coop-envy!!! It’s awesome, truly… I bought a coop for temp housing which seems to have turned permanent, but like yours, @ oh-dark-thirty, like clockwork, The Ladies trot up into it & argue over their perch space, like kids in the backseat: “you’re over the line,” “that’s MY space,” & my favorite underdog chick (lowest in pecking order) is inevitably chased furthest from the door, when they can’t chase her out altogether! Ah, chick stories…. Is this what being a grandmother is going to be like?

    • Karen says:

      LOL. Yes, probably. Wait’ll you start making them hot oatmeal with raisins on cold mornings like I do. Then you’ll know you’re REALLY over the edge. :) ~ karen

  228. Justme says:

    You just had to mention that, huh? Guess what me & the Ladies had for breakfast? LOL

  229. Marcie says:

    How amazing this is. I know you don’t have plans, but could you list what you did first, then next until you came to the end. I want to try to emulate this. My community has just begun allowing us to have certain farm animals but we have to show how we will house and care for them first in an urban setting.
    You are a women with skills.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Marcie – Thanks. The Coop was a labour of love. :) I honestly couldn’t replicate or tell you how I did it. I can’t even really remember. I framed it, I covered it in plywood, I built the doors, I put the roof on and then screened it in with hardware cloth basically. If you’ve never built anything before, then this may not be the best thing for you to start with though. It probably also isn’t the cheapest route to go. You can buy nice coops (either completed or just the plans) online and sometimes Costco even carries them online! Good luck with your plan to get chickens! ~ karen

  230. laura sudderth says:

    I hope you are feeding them laying mash and nothing else until they lay.

    • Karen says:

      LOL. Hi Laura. The post you commented on is actually a few years old. They’ve been laying for quite some time now. ~ karen

  231. Christy says:

    I found your coop while searching for Heather Bullard alternatives and modifications. My husband has built soooo many chicken structures for me over the years and now that we’ve moved out of state we need to build yet another coop. We love the Chez Poulet design but we really don’t love building peaked roofs. Your coop is EXACTLY what we were looking for! No peaked roof but no loss of the basic design elements that we also love. My only question is about the flat roof. How does it drain off when it rains? Is it totally flat? Or does it have any slope at all to it, even the slightest? I just wondered if you had any problems with water pooling?

    Thanks for the help!

    • Lindsey says:

      I have the same roof question as Christy listed above.

      Hopefully you see this old post : )

      • Karen says:

        Hi Lindsey,

        There’s a formula you use to determine how slanted a flat roof needs to be in order to drain water off of it. I can’t remember it, but if you Google it, you’ll find it. It’s based on the size of the roof. I need to put a new roof on my coop this year because my “skylight” is leaking and I’m going to reframe it a bit so it has a bit more of an angle. :) ~ karen!

        • Lindsey says:

          PERFECT, I will search for that formula bc I’m pretty sure our Louisiana humidity and rain would ruin a flat roof in no time.
          Your coop still has me swooning (even with a leaky skylight)!

          Thanks for the inspiration

  232. Pingback: Spring Fever | nine apple trees

  233. Dave Bowtell says:

    FANTASTIC job on the coop….. I mean bloody awesome just does not do it justice.

    One thing though ….. for the roosts it would be better for the chooks feet if they had a natural branch for their sleeping as the flat surface of the current perch is not good for their feet as they can not relieve the pressure points.

    if you were able to put a similar type of branch that you have in the open space for their night time roost they will love you so much more than they already obviously do.

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  237. Liz H says:

    This is a georgeous piece of work! I’ve been browsing the internet to get ideas for an indoor rabbit enclosure, and stumbled upon your page (via Pinterest). I’m hoping to apply some of your design ideas to a smaller indoor rabbit condo. Great combination of fashion (beauty) and function. Thanks for the insipiration!!!

  238. Dan says:

    No images work :(

    • Karen says:

      I know Dan. I’m sorry. It’s an issue that has to do with the way my photos are delivered to my site basically. I’m hoping and praying it will be resolved in the next few days. Trust me … I’m more sad face about it than you are, lol. ~ karen!

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  241. Cazzz says:

    Now I thought my ex built a great chook (chicken) coop (only thing he did built that didn’t fall down).

    But your coop is simply the best I have ever seen. Well done.

    • Karen says:

      LOL! Well not falling down is pretty important. Probably the most important thing as a matter of fact so it’s a good thing that he got it right with the coop. :) And thanks. I still love the look of my coop! My chickens of course, couldn’t care less. ~ karen

  242. Jannette says:

    You created a beautiful chicken coop! I absolutely love it !

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Jannette! It’s still holding up so I guess I did a better job than I thought, lol. It has a little more poop on it but other than that, it’s good. :) ~ karen!

  243. I appreciate specially that you -as a girl- do better job than many boys. 😀

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Martin! I find most genders can do what the other gender is known for. The only reason they can’t is because they haven’t tried. :) ~ karen

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  246. William says:

    What climate do you live in? We have some cold days in the winter, I am thinking I might need to insulate the sleeping quarters to keep them warm. I will have to keep that in my mind if I build this.

    • Karen says:

      Hi William. I’m in zone 6b. For the past month and a half there have been extreme cold warnings. So around -20 celsius. The chickens have been fine. BUT I did put some styrofoam insulation just in the roof of their sleeping quarters and covered it with some particle board so they didn’t chew on it. And last year I put a small, wall mounted ceramic heater which I turn on when it’s like this but I only set it to 0 celsius. Chickens don’t need to be “warm” just warm enough that they don’t get frostbite. ~ karen!

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  248. Carrie says:

    I love this coop so much I may need to replace the one I have! But I need to know where you got the lanterns! I am building a green house and they would be perfect, especially for $10!! Have I mentioned I love the coop! You are brilliant!

    • Karen says:

      HI Carrie! I got the lanterns at a local grocery store actually! But you can find those types almost everywhere now for cheap. Ikea, Homesense (Homegoods), places like that. And thanks! The chickens and I love the coop too. :) ~ karen!

  249. Nancy C says:

    I put a link for your coop on a friend’s Facebook page. Check out this “Estate”.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10203803962319127&set=p.10203803962319127&type=1&theater

    Karen, blogs come and go and yours remains a “keeper”. From the comments I have read, I almost believe you could assemble a team of writers for a sitcom. I have truly LOL’d many times. The latest being Deb’s response to your May 27th 2015 post:
    also some blue gloves…which pretty much makes you “Babe, the Blue Ox” of yore

    Thanks for the laughs.

    • Karen says:

      That’s what I’m (we’re) here for Nancy C. To laugh. And sometimes cry, and the odd time swear until our eyes bleed. :) And I’d seen that coop a long time ago somewhere. It’s BEAUTIFULLLLL! ~ karen!

  250. Emory says:

    This has got to be the COOLEST!!!! chicken coop I have ever seen. I love it.

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  253. Laura says:

    Sorry if you’ve already answered this question, but how wide is your door into the chicken run area?

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  256. Jessica Murphy says:

    Can you make me one of these? For real.

  257. Libby says:

    Hi! Your coop is fabulous. I am in the process of finishing up my own coop and was wondering what type of chickens you have and if you would share your source.

    Thanks!

    • Karen says:

      Hey Libby. My chickens are a bit of a mixed breed. Rhode Island Reds with a bit of Ameraucana mixed in. I also have 2 newer ones, both are Marans which lay VERY dark eggs. . I got the first bunch from my boyfriend who got them from a local farmer and the other two are from another local chicken farmer. ~ karen!

  258. Heather says:

    where r the blue prints?!?! I need them!!

    Thanks
    take care
    xxx
    Heather Brottish

  259. Heather Brottish says:

    I need them to make it…Thanks!!!

  260. delaine says:

    I just love this, well done! Was googling for pics on chicken coops to gather ideas, I think I’m going to find a way to just copy yours plank by plank. Perfection! Thanks so much for sharing :)

    • Karen says:

      Hi Delaine! Thanks. I love my coop too. If you look in my sidebar, there’s an ad for “Chez Poulet”. That’s Heather Bullard’s chicken coop which is stunning. Hers is the coop I based mine on. At the time she didn’t have plans for her chicken coop, but she had some drawn up and you can buy them. So there’d be no guess work when building. The only real difference is, she has a peaked roof and I have put on a flat roof. And mine is black, while hers is ivory. Same coop though. :) ~ karen!

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