Happy Friday, MNN readers. I'm getting outta Dodge (aka Brooklyn) and will be coming to you live from the southern coast of Maine over the next few days. It's the first time I've been up that way in a while so if you have any must-see suggestions for in and around Portland, particularly on the sustainable design/architecture and lobster roll fronts, I'm all ears ... just send me a tweet.

Design Milk digs a series of deck and patio-ready fold-out chairs made from reclaimed wooden pallets. The chairs are made by Gas & Air Studios in Wimbleton, London, and come in 14 different color choices. That's one pictured above. 

Salon.com publishes a great essay from Madeline Holler who chronicles her time spent as a "Radical Homemaker failure." Holler admits that the back-to-basics Radical Homemakers movement, one that revolves around "home-grown food, old-timey skills and a willingness to help the neighbors," isn't ultimately her cup o' tea. 

Inhabitat takes a gander at the first dwelling to receive Passivhaus Ile de France certification. It's a true looker thanks to a remarkable bamboo skin shutter system that covers the home's facade.

The Los Angeles Times spotlights another home with a unique exterior skin: a residence outside of Salt Lake City — it's the first LEED-H certified home in Utah — clad with "interlocking recycled steel shingles in a harlequin pattern" on three sides. 

USATODAY welcomes a recently completed home that's "powered by batteries and solar panels and equipped with a smog-eating roof" in West Lancaster, Calif. The home is open for pubic tours and will eventually enter the market in the low $200,000 range. 

Jetson Green eyes a fabulous summer rental property in the Finger Lakes region of New York: the green prefab weeHouse designed by Alchemy Architects. 

New York Magazine admires (via slideshow) Gregory and Victoria Masi Prior's stunning, sustainable second home in Montauk, New York. I certainly wouldn't mind it as a first home. 

TreeHugger marvels at an "almost invisible" mirrored glass-clad treehouse in Sweden. A special film applied to the glass prevents unfortunate avian collisions. 

Re-nest gives props to a recently remodeled home in Berkeley, Calif. that not only incorporates salvaged building materials but salvaged auto parts like doors, windows, and rear-view mirrors.

The Independent wonders: "Today's communes are a far cry from the free-loving, dope-smoking hippy havens of the Sixties. But can they really solve the problems of the modern world?"

The New York Times goes shopping with Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge, the breakout stars of Planet Green's The Fabulous Beekman Boys

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.