It is technically not a treehouse, but rather a house up in the trees given we did not use a tree as a support, BUT, we still call it the treehouse; one word. I know, we are annoying that way.

The platform is 8 x 12 and the house part is 8 x 8 feet – We chose these dimensions to minimize waste by using standard, big box lumber lengths. While it would be nice to have it bigger (we plan to finish off the bottom for more sleepover room) it would change the whole approach..and budget.

Here’s a little timeline in photos of the treehouse progress.  All posts relating to the treehouse have their own category here.

We had bushwacked a path through the woods the previous year, and we knew our treehouse needed to be off this path to the left….the rest you can see in the photos!

back of TH skylight at night


DIY modern treehouse:modfrugal

DIY modern treehouse:modfrugal

The daybed is 2 twin air mattresses stacked atop each other so that when the boys want to sleep up there, they just move the coffee table over and lay out the 2 mattresses on the floor. The coffee table holds the 2 hammocks. The windows have a sliding acrylic cover to keep the pollen out during springtime, and to keep it warmer in winter.

DIY modern treehouse:modfrugal

DIY modern treehouse:modfrugal

DIY modern treehouse:modfrugal


DIY modern treehouse:modfrugal

modfrugal treehouse

Second floor to be built below… Stay tuned!

29 thoughts on “Treehouse

  1. Pingback: 10 of the WILDest houses from around the world « The WILD Magazine

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  3. Cahow

    SO many positive things to comment upon! I’m glad that I scrolled all the way down, so that issues I initially had, were addressed. Mainly, railings around the elevated deck! Good call on the Hog Fencing; I love using that look on jobs. Empty TV with the Books inside? CLASSIC!!!! <really got a kick outta that one! Love that you painted/stained the plywood; I can't stand raw plywood. That taupe colour is fabulous. Skull & Crossbones door mat? One of my favourite personal motifs. :D And, it's better to NOT build a "tree-house" around or upon a tree! We did two that way: a storm took down our 110 year old maple that held a tree house and then when we saved the structure and stuck it on top of the salvagable trunk, the trunk rotted out in 10 years time. LOL So, we had to save the tree house by putting it up on 8" x 8" treated timbers. NOW, it's safe! Very nice of you to share your photos and story with us. Thank you.

  4. Michael

    We are here in Nashville (Hermitage) TN… Would love to visit and share ideas some day. Send me a message to my email if you’d like for us to get together with you all. I think it’ll be lots of fun.

  5. Natalie Brennan

    Wow……what an inspiration this is to me! Picture perfect…..I can almost hear the birds singing as you sit on this fabulous deck high up amongst the branches :)

  6. Paula

    Beautifully realised.

    I am not from USA. Please tell me how you can build on what appears to be random land? Are you ‘in hiding’?; running the risk that the landowner may locate and evict you? Or, is there some other more communal land that you have legimately build on? The very best of luck with this change in lifestyle. Paula (Aust)

    1. ModFruGal Post author

      Hi Paula, we actually own the land, so we are not in any danger of being evicted! We are very fortunate to have our land adjoin to a State Park, so it seems to be a lot more land visually than we technically own. Thanks for stopping by!

  7. Pingback: Wonderfully Affordable Treehouse in Tennessee Built for $1500 | Off Grid World

  8. Renat

    Hi there! Congrats on building such a wonderful treehouse on the cheap!

    Can you share the blue print of the house, measurements, material types and sources?

    Discovered your blog on Inhabitat.

    Keep up the good work!

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  10. Alessandra Dorante

    Hi guys! I just loved your treehouse and was thinking of building one in our family’s farm.
    Could you kindly make the plant and construction plans available somehow? :-)
    It would be a blessing and my little girl and I would love the adventure and challenge of building it!
    thanks for you

    1. ModFruGal Post author

      Hi Alessandra! Unfortunately our plans consisted of some sketches on graph paper and we are not architects, so plans are unavailable. Thanks so much for your interest…we just sort of winged it as we went along!

  11. Pingback: Mother of Two Builds Tiny $1,500 Hideaway Amongst the Trees of Tennessee | Inhabitat - Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building

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  13. Jason

    Great tree house! I’m currently building a very similar structure in my backyard for my daughter. Two things of yours I am incorporating into mine. The clear corrugated poly roof material for a skylight and the screens over the vent holes between the ceiling joists separating the ceiling from the wall. I’m curious how you attached that screen material between the ceiling joists as i want to do it myself.


    1. ModFruGal Post author

      Thanks Jason! We attached it with a staple gun, and then tacked some trim on top to make it look a bit more finished! Good luck and share photos when you are finished!

  14. Lorelei Collins

    What a beautiful idea!! Enjoy every moment of it!! Your kiddos will grow with all of that same creativity, I’m sure, along with appreciation of the great outdoors!

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