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Image: Free Spirit Spheres

All images courtesy of Free Spirit Spheres

If hobbits lived in the sky, this is probably where they would live – in wooden forest cocoons! Ideal for meditation, relaxation or a quick forest getaway, Free Spirit Spheres in Vancouver Island, Canada has capitalized on our need to burrow – among the tree tops. The wooden or fibreglass spheres are suspended between the trees and can be rented for the night or bought for home use. They not only look amazing but are also fairly luxurious inside.


Image: Free Spirit Spheres

Model “Eryn”

The idea for the spheres was born from inventor Tom Chudleigh’s need for a permanent space to meditate. He was also searching for a concept that would allow people to move into the forest without having to take it down first by chopping trees to make room for houses. Free Spirit Spheres have been in the news on and off since June 2005, when Chudleigh had two wooden prototypes ready and set up. Since then, he has added fibreglass spheres and individual frames, windows, stairs, etc. to his product list for anyone who wants to build their own sphere.

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Image: Free Spirit Spheres

Half-finished sphere

If the sphere’s interiors seem familiar, that’s no coincidence as Chudleigh borrowed heavily from sailboat construction and rigging practice. Each sphere starts with a wooden framework and strips of wood that get attached to the frame to form the walls, which are then sanded down. The door and the windows are cut out next. Then, work on the interiors starts: wiring, insulation, laying the wooden floor, making the cabinets, the bed and seating area. Spheres are either made from local and lightweight woods like cedar and spruce or cast in a fibreglass mould.

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