Sukkah 2008 / 5769

Temporary shelter made from salvaged lumber and salvaged wood lath.

Status: built and dismantled October 2008

Early 20th century houses in Seattle are pretty much 100% Douglas fir: structure, windows, siding, finished flooring, trim...almost everything. An extensive remodel provided us with a load of rough sawn fir lath and a couple dozen smooth planed fir 2x3s.

The form of this sukkah derived from the nature of the specific materials used to build it, with a little influence from the pages of Dwell magazine. A perfect 8'x8'x8' cube made from just that one material, it is simplicity itself.

In a real building wall, lath is gapped to allow the plaster to key into the cracks, but after experimentation with spacing, I decided to set the lath tight to minimize view and to just allow slivers of light to penetrate to the interior. Because it held plaster for a century, the lath was slightly blanched from the lime on one side, which I placed on the interior.

The weather was pretty good, but our schedules were hectic so we only ate a handful of meals in the sukkah. The interior felt comfortable and the light effects were exquisite.

Materials cost nothing at all, construction took just one day, but only after a first full day spent removing a zillion tiny lath nails. The sukkah panels were carefully stored for the winter and then exhibited for the month of April 2009 in an art gallery as part of the Seattle Jewish Film Festival.