Category Archives: Art and Cult-yurt

Thanksgiving Yurts

Happy Thanksgiving, yurt fans. I was hoping to find a Thanksgiving yurt somewhere that I could post for the holiday, but if you’ve ever googled yurt, most of the stuff that comes up is advertisements for yurts. So no dice.

Instead, today we’ll salute a yurt hero. Last year 12-year old Max Wallack won the 2009 “Trash to Treasure” design contest by designing the “Home Dome,” a homeless shelter made from plastic, wire, and packing peanuts. Does the design look familiar? That’s because it’s based on a yurt.

From Treehugger: “When I was six,” Max said, “I won an invention contest that included a trip to Chicago. While there, I saw homeless people living on streets, and beneath highways and underpasses. I felt very sorry for these people, and ever since then, felt that my goal and obligation was to find a way to help them. My invention improves the living conditions for homeless people, refugees, or disaster victims by giving them easy-to-assemble shelter.”

Max Wallack, yurt hero, we’re thankful for you.

Mobile Homes: Can you name them all?

Just wanted to share some art with you today. I bought this mobile a few months ago, but am newly appreciating it today as it hangs by my desk. Mobile Homes by Kim Baise. Check out her Etsy shop.

mobile homes by Kim Baise

Why you should blog (plus archers who yurt)

As some of you may have noticed, it’s been a while since I’ve posted. If you’ve ever been in a situation where you’ve been too busy (or lazy) to blog, if you’re scared to start a new blog, or if you’re thinking “blogging is so 1990s,” read Why You Need to Blog, an article in the recent GuideStar newsletter. Some fun facts about blogging:

  • By 2014, blog readership will rise to more than 150 million Americans, or 60% of the Internet population in the US
  • 350,000 new posts are added to WordPress blogs each day

So in the spirit of sparking conversation, building community, and building an army of yurt activists, I’m going to try harder.

If you’re sitting there thinking “I don’t give a crap about blogging stats,” check out this 360-degree photos of an archer meeting/yurt camp in Opusztaszer National Park in Hungary. Döbbenetes.

Medieval Yurts

Fellow yurt-lovers, my apologies for being MIA over the last few weeks. It’s been a busy summer (see I’m Back Baby. Apparently I spoke too soon).

Below is a time-lapsed video of a couple setting up their yurt at Pennsic War 39. Soothing music, even though it wasn’t the smoothest setup. Good thing some Medieval visitors were able to pitch in!

What is Pennsic, you ask? “Pennsic is an annual event, in the guise of a ‘War,’ between the Kingdoms of the East and the Middle of the Society for Creative Anachronism.” More than 10,000 people participated this August in Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania.

Yurts and IDEO

A lot of people (myself included) love yurts because of their pleasing design.

And a lot of people love IDEO because it’s so good at design.

(If you’re not familiar with IDEO, it is one of the best-known design and consulting firms.)

Did you know that the conference room in IDEO’s Palo Alto office was modeled after a yurt “to give designers a quiet location in which to take notes or make impromptu sketches?”

IDEO's Palo Alto office

See more photos at

Also, here’s a video about IDEO’s design process. It’s from 1999, but it still gives you an idea of what they are all about.

Arts and Cult-yurt Saturday: Quilted Yurt

I love Google Alerts. Fellow yurt lovers, set one up for yurt. You’ll see all kinds of goofy stuff. A lot of my posts come from stuff that has come up from my Google Alert for yurt (that rhymes!). And once I had a double-alert for my office AND yurt—mind blowing.

Anyway, over the past few months I’ve seen a few alerts for yurts and quilts. I wasn’t sure what was up, until this week: Linzi Upton, aka the Quilt Quine, recently exhibited a yurt made of quilts.

Quilted Yurt

Apparently, Linzi rocked the Loch Lomond Quilt Show. And lots of people are writing about her. Check out her blog for more info, or google Quilt Quine. Or set up a yurt alert!

I’m back, baby!

Sorry loyal Yurtastic fans. May’s been a busy month.

But I’m back, baby!

And I saw the movie Babies last night. Yurt scenes a plenty. An extra bonus: the Namibian family lives in a round home too. Awesome.

In my opinion, the best scene involves the Japanese baby totally freaking out. I want to have this clip on my computer for whenever I get frustrated. Trust me, it’s amazing. Even if it doesn’t take place in a yurt.

You might also enjoy Babies in yurts!

Art and Cult-yurt Friday: Salute to Etsy

Do you know Etsy? Etsy is a place where artists and craftspeople can sell their wares. It’s also a place for yurt-lovers and their yurt-related creations. See that crocheted yurt in the header of this blog? Sarah’s Geep Crossing shop on Etsy (via Regretsy, but that’s another story). I’m also awaiting another yurt treasure (ordered last night, arriving soon!) and I’ll post pictures of that soon.

A quick search on yurts reveals the following treasures:

yurt crafts on Etsy

Buy handmade!

Art and Cult-yurt Friday (Saturday): Burning Man

A little behind on my art and cult-yurt this week, but wanted to highlight a yurt opportunity for folks in the Bay Area.

That’s great, but can you build a yurt? Free DIY yurt workshop in Oakland.
Tomorrow, April 25, from 2:00 to 4:00 at NIMBY space

Apparently (and not surprisingly), yurt building is all the rage at Burning Man. The Burning Man Special Events Team is supporting this event as part of a free series of interactive workshops (by Burners for Burners).

Not much of a Burning Man fan myself, but it’s nice that they are offering a free yurt event.

More info can be found on the SF Examiner website.

You might also enjoy Stuff on my cat, yurts on my truck.

Also, for folks who are not familiar with Burning Man, here’s the wikipedia entry (note: the article has multiple issues…ha!)

Art and Cult-yurt Fridays: Mount Holyoke yurts

Building a yurt (on top of a skating rink!) is part of the curriculum in Professor Stephen Jones’ Silk Road course at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts. Students also learned the traditional art of felt making with sculptural artist and art educator Nancy Milliken.

students building yurt at Mount Holyoke

“The purpose [of the yurt project] is to show the class how nomads put up their homes on the steppes,” Jones said. The yurt, continued Jones, takes a central role in class discussions about silk roads as ancient transportation and trade links. Travelers often stayed in yurts while embarking on the world’s oldest trade route.

Read the article by Magdalena Georgieva ’10.