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Tormore, Home of Sherry Snider

This 5-star Built Green Home special has spectacular interior woodwork! A custom handcrafted staircase, custom-made doors, wainscoting, window seats and more - all crafted from top-quality, locally grown, harvested and milled FSC-certified Alder from Wild Thyme Farm in Oakville.
Tormore, Home of Sherry Snider

Location

545 72nd Lane NE Olympia, WA 98506

Wild Thyme Farm & NW Certified Forestry

This 5-star Built Green Home special has spectacular interior woodwork! A custom handcrafted staircase, custom-made doors, wainscoting, window seats and more - all crafted from top-quality, locally grown, harvested and milled FSC-certified Alder from Wild Thyme Farm in Oakville.

Mrs. Snider had her house built in 2006 using SIPs panel construction, the first permitted greywater recycling system in the County and may other green features. Much of the interior is finished with local wood products certified by the Forest Stewardship Council as coming from responsibly managed land.

It is this remarkable use of wood in her home which makes it special.  Sherry knows where the wood in her house comes from! In fact, the forester who harvested, milled and finished her lumber will be present on-site for the Green Tour on April 16 & 17 to share the story - from the watershed to the woodshop.

Tormore-house"Tormore" means "High Hill House" in old Gaelic.  Rightly so, Sherry's house is built on top of a hill overlooking Boston Harbor.  Sherry has deep roots in her family's homeland of Scotland, and in designing her Victorian-styled home she brought a refined, elegant approach with a beautiful result.  Her house has antiques from Europe and Early America, some more than 400 years old!

When entering the Snider home, one is immediately impressed by the spacious beauty of the 2-story vaulted living room with high windows filling the house with light.  Above, sliding french glass doors open a faux patio door to the upstairs bedroom, creating a classic elegance uncommon in Olympia.  The scrolled staircase banister, like the stair itself are of the highest hand-crafted worksmanship, giving another dimension of stature to the room.

FSC Certified BanisterThe beautiful caramel tones of knotty Alder from Wild Thyme Farm fills room after room with warmth  - from the wainscoting and rail, to the window and door trim.  Even the doors are custom-made from local FSC-Certified wood.  Two built-in window seats continue the beautiful use of this valuable local resource.  Check out the NCF Video on Working Forests!

It's not easy being green though - and it takes more than fancy woodwork to earn a 5-star Built Green Certification.

Airtight, energy-efficient construction begins with proper foundation design and insulation with thermal breaks.  The house was framed with Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) on the first floor with joints sealed, and well-insulated stick-frame construction on the 2nd floor. The SIPs were manufactured locally out of recycled and recyclable materials by Premier Building Systems in Fife.  Because they are manufactured to custom specifications off-site, they can be installed very quickly, so be a cost-effective way to build a high-performance home.

Significant water-conserving plumbing features were added to this home, including the first permitted greywater recycling system in Thurston County - the "BRAC" system recycles sink and shower water to flush the toilets.  A multi-zone hydronic floor radiant heat system warms from the bottom up, heated by an on-demand hot water heater (a second unit heats her domestic hot water), also manufactured locally.

Radiant heat is a boon to indoor air quality, eliminating forced air (and dust) movement found in most homes.  The home's solar powered-attic fans do the rest, circulating fresh air into the home for air quality.  Her meticulous use of Zero-VOC, hypoallergenic paints didn't hurt either!

Outside, three raingardens and native landscaping help manage stormwater flows on the steep forested lot.

Sherry was committed to having many deep green features in the design and construction of her home, and remains dedicated to minimizing the environmental impact of her home and water usage.  As such a pioneer, her journey has not been without its share of challenges, suffering the somewhat steep learning curve of some of the newer technologies, applications and building methods.  From her lessons, builders and homeowners alike can get a sense - both of what is possible - and some good things to avoid!

 

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Tormore, Home of Sherry Snider
Warm caramel tones of knotty Alder from Wild Thyme Farm
Tormore, Home of Sherry Snider
Victorian kitchen features on-demand hot water and antique furnishings
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