Dooley's Love Shack | Simple By Lacey | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism

Updated: Feb 1, 2020


Introducing our largest build yet, which was ironically for the smallest horse, a Mini Horse! Dooley’s Love Shack is a mini horse run-in, aka his home to shield against the weather, to sleep, and to eat. It was custom made for a client in NY, who rescued Dooley the mini horse.

Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple By Lacey
Dooley's Love Shack | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple By Lacey

Last winter due to the wear and tear of the storms, Dooley’s original run-in started to fall apart. The run-in either needed severe help to restore it or a new one needed to be designed. Together our client, my husband and I decided that the old one being attached to the paddock and immobile could lead to a future problem. On top of that the amount of work it needed would add up to the same cost as building a brand new home. These two facts lead to the customizing and building of Dooley’s Love Shack. 

Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple By Lacey
Dooley's Love Shack Open Window | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple By Lacey

Dooley’s Love Shack construction was done completely at our workshop and had to be transported to the farm upon completion. The Love Shack's dimensions, we all decided upon, are 6’ wide x 5’ depth x 5’ height. Even with just the frame assembled you could feel the magic that the love shack was going to radiate. The door and window cut outs were perfect size and proportions for Dooley and looked adorable. 

Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple by Lacey
Dooley's Love Shack Before Trim | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple by Lacey

The next step was adding the walls. The 1/2 plywood siding is made for external use and will withstand the wear and tear of the weather for years to come. The original color the walls were when we attached them was beige but in the end we choose to paint them a brilliant babbling brook blue. The blue hue really popped when we attached the white trim. 

Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple by Lacey
Dooley's Love Shack Trim Before Paint | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple by Lacey

The roof was designed with a slight slope to the rear, for water runoff. We used brown wood asphalt shingles to complete the roof. The color was a warm neutral next to the blue and emphasized the richness of the blue hue. We filled in all the interior connecting seams with insulation foam to help provide more warmth through the cold winter months ahead. To ensure Dooley’s safety we went around and clipped every nail and pointy edge to make sure he could not hurt himself in any way. We want him to be able to use this as his home even if it is to just rub his face on, to scratch an itch. 

Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple by Lacey
Dooley's Love Shack Sign | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple by Lacey

The window has a slide that we made from the same material as the walls, the 1/2 plywood siding. We painted it blue to match the walls and to look cohesive while in place. When you have the sealed window in place it prevents rain, wind, and/or snow from getting into the Love Shack. The final two steps in completing Dooley’s Love Shack was the sign that declared his home the “Dooley Love Shack.” Looking at the photo of him in his Love Shack for the first time he looks proud and excited!

Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple by Lacey
Dooley Standing In Dooley's Love Shack | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple by Lacey

Using our Cricut, we printed out a stencil of the letters for the sign. We selected a very rustic and rough piece of wood. We decided to keep the roughness and the weathered look to the wood by leaving it exactly as we found it. We taped our stencil we made onto the wood, and using spray paint, painted the words Dooley’s Love Shack. The words are white with blue hearts on the end to match the color theme of the entire shack. 

Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple by Lacey
Frontal View Of Dooley In Dooley's Love Shack | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple by Lacey

We burned our company’s logo on the ledge of the window. It finalizes the completion of Dooley’s Love Shack. Look at our Instagram to watch the video of us burning the logo onto the window ledge!

Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple by Lacey
Dooley's Love Shack Logo Burn | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple by Lacey

Once the run-in was complete we had to now transport it from Kings Park to Islip. This process took a Bob-Cat and a 20 foot long trailer. After securing all parts down we started our journey to Islip. It may seem like the hardest job would be the physical moving of the run-in however we had other obstacles to deal with on top of the transport. We also had to de-assemble the original run-in and haul away the lumber from it, the paddock had to be taken down and put back up for the ability to fit the Bob-Cat into the space where the new run-in was being placed, and we had to keep the noise level as low as possible to help keep the other horses stress level at bay. 


Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Healthy Living | Simple by Lacey
Dooley's Love Shack Mid-Transfer | Woodworking Craftsman | Minimalism | Simple by Lacey

The process of transporting Dooley's Love Shack was long and had multiple obstacles but it was completely worth it! Dooley is a happy mini horse in his new home, safe and ready for the winter months. We love working with humans and even more with animals!! Contact us today for custom builds for yourself, your home, your pet or a special occasion like a wedding gift or decoration. We love to collaborate ideas and design unique items you can cherish for years. Contact us today at: simplebylacey@gmail.com


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