Gertee is what we call our sweet Alaskan twist on the original ger/round hut design, built by people around the world for thousands of years. I christened the first one I built in the summer of 2004, "Gertee" because I made it a half ger/half teepee. Years later we learned that in Mongolian, where many people still live in gers today, Gertee means "relaxing at home."
Our use of the name and design has been dubbed "favela-chic" in the green architectural press because we use scraps as much as possible. We've rebuilt every one of our models several times, each time making modifications, trying different fabrics and structural materials, and we learn new ways to do it with each reconstruction project.
We've already been building up our small book business since 2006. The next thing we need to do is finish the How-to book and DVD series for Gertee. Our company catalog will expand to include blueprints, basic tutorials, a childrens' coloring book and paperdoll cutouts, miniature kits and full-size Traveler frames (and parts). Some of the contest funds would go toward towards building a website with a webstore. We've already established a strong web presence with all our projects.
We're currently living in our newest model which is 4 small Gertee Travelers connected to one center kitchen/woodstove room. Each Gertee has a different roof ring, and the bathroom/water closet will have running water and an inside toilet. The focus now is on making Gertees with all the modern conviences, able to meet land use codes while still keeping it affordable.
A couple of the pictures I inserted in this video got crunched together during the upload. One of the things I would use the contest winnings for is new or gently used video recording and editing equipment!
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Jack Daniel's Independence Project Contest