Gary Miller has been an invaluable key to unlocking the beauty of my straw-bale construction project. We had lots of expected and unexpected challenges with a natural materials building project like this, and Gary’s depth and breadth of experience, skills, interest, and plain good thinking helped tremendously in overcoming them.

For example, what is the best way to hang heavy kitchen cabinets to a wall made of straw? There are many ways, but we thought out a robust and cost effective way that also blended seamlessly into the nearby walls and windows.

What happens if you run into a plumbing or electrical issue while doing carpentry? Without having to call another contractor in, Gary has the skills to make the correct (to code) changes that allows completion without delay.

In addition to skills to get the job done, Gary has an artistic eye that will make the finished work beautifully finished. The two rooms making up the master bedroom illustrate this point wonderfully; the arch connection, the combined window seat/cabinet, the way the doors are framed by a large plastered radius. All these elements blend harmoniously into a space that is functionally and aesthetically pleasing for decades to come. It also showcases his considerable skills as carpenter, cabinet maker, and plasterer.


A few more points on working with Gary: Building in a sustainable manner was important to me, and Gary was one of the few builders I’ve met with more than a buzzword-filled faddish interest in the subject. We made efforts to source local and renewable materials, and lesson toxic load in the building itself and in present and future waste. This was not done with reluctance or fear but with desire to learn and help make the world a better place.

Finally, the intrinsic gift of working with Gary Miller is his integrity in living. He will tell you what he thinks and feels, and how decisions will affect the project both financially, functionally, and in the inexplicable way it will make you feel in future days. He will bill you fairly. He will check up on his work to make sure you are happy with it. It may be an “old fashioned” ethic, but as his client this integrity will make you appreciate your decision to work with him.



Working with Gary was a pleasure and the final results continue to please me daily, after 10 years of living in the house. His keen eye, attention to detail, and the care he puts into his craft makes for a truly lovely and livable home. Gary stood out for his desire to preserve the natural landscape, work with local materials, and his willingness to build a unique house that not only looked wonderful, but was durable, comfortable, and impeccably assembled. I’d eagerly work with him again in the future.