Artist Converts Garage into a Gorgeous ‘Woman Cave’

You’ve no doubt heard the term “man cave,” a place of refuge on the family property (i.e. basement, attic, shed, spare room), where men can go to enjoy solitude, time with friends, and partake in their hobbies. Well, we think it’s time that “woman cave” entered the vernacular, too. Like men, women are constantly juggling countless responsibilities, and females deserve a den to call their very own, filled with all of the trappings that most delight them. We’re inspired by one artist who converted a garage into a woman cave with her own two hands, and outfitted it with reclaimed materials which make her sanctuary green…and us green with envy.

Part of living an eco-friendly lifestyle is changing one’s perspective and viewing what some might deem defunct as a launching pad for opportunity. When Seattle resident and visual and performance artist Michelle de la Vega bought a house with a tiny garage after her divorce, she decided to rent out the house to make an income and turn the garage into her home. She admits she was “coming out of the ashes,” post-divorce, and this is the perfect analogy for the renovation she was about to be at the helm of as her own general contractor.

Taking construction matters into her own hands, de la Vega completed the transformation for $32,000. Costs were kept down by furnishing the 250 square foot space with salvaged goods that boast immense character. She explains to The New York Times, “The garage and the elements in it are all defunct, unwanted things that were reclaimed and given new life. Given where I was coming from, building it was a deeply redemptive experience.”

Some of the offbeat trash to treasure finds she garnered from nearby salvage yards such as Boeing Surplus, Pacific Industrial Supply and Second Use include the metal ladder she climbs to access her sleeping loft, which once called a ship home; and silver lockers from a United Airlines maintenance building that comprise her closet space.

In addition to her interior design savvy, de la Vega digs into the outdoors, where she grows vegetables in raised planting beds to sustain her raw food diet. When can we stop by and unwind, Ms. de la Vega?

Visit the slideshow of Michelle de la Vega’s inspired and eco-friendly garage to house conversion.

Image: Ira Lippke for The New York Times