October 7, 2011

Tiny Home Obsession

A couple weeks ago, I went through a re-invigorated obsession with tiny homes. I have always loved the idea of living in a tiny home since before we lived on Feather (10 ft wide at it's widest by 38 ft long).

When I was 18, I lived in an RV for a few months with my boyfriend at the time. Amazingly, it was a step up from most of the living accommodations of most of my friends, since we were all full-time climbers, and they were all camping in tents while Erick and I were cozy and shielded from the winds of Nevada's winter. We'd have 'dinner parties' for like 8 people in the Chinook.
Then, after my house burned down and I had the opportunity to gather only what I needed, I felt like a free vagabond for a short bit. It's amazing how fast the stuff builds up again, but I try to purge on a fairly regular basis, selling stuff on ebay or giving it away on craigslist. Still, there's plenty I could do without, I'm sure.

The urge to look into tiny home living was in full force again after I saw this video on an apartment in Japan that is sort of like a transformer:
Then a couple days after that, I saw pictures of these awesome "Idaho sheep wagons". You can buy one for just over $8000, definitely the cheapest tiny home I've seen yet. But it has a canvas roof, which is not the most durable separation between you and the elements.

I have a whole board dedicated on Pinterest to places I wouldn't mind living, or architecture that strikes my fancy, and probably the most common thread is small spaces. Here are some of my favorites from over there.
"The greatest innovation anywhere for space is boats. Even more than spaceships and submarines."

Airstream Trailer Renovation by Hofmann Architecture

Swedish designer Torsten Ottesjö's Hus.Ett

Tumbleweed Tiny House Company

This latter one I first saw on treehugger.com, but it's where I first started my obsession a couple weeks ago, delving through all the plans of their tiny homes, and watching videos of people showing me around their Tumbleweeds. What I like about them is that they are very liveable, and many of them are built on a trailer bed, so you can park your home wherever someone is kind enough to let you park. And it's much less wasteful (to build) than a similarly moveable (in theory, anyway) mobile home. Those

I really like this video, of a family of 3 who lives in a 320sq foot home, because you really get a sense for how it is to live with them. They don't concentrate on the square footage, but on what they really felt they needed. Thus, they have a full size washer and dryer, as well as a full size refrigerator whereas most tiny home livers chose not to have either, or else only a small dorm-sized refrigerator. I also like that they have a cat.

Similarly, this guy insists, it's not about minimum space, but having the minimum that works for you. He really wanted to have a full sized couch in his place, so it's a bit larger than some of the Tumbleweeds. I like how conversational and philosophical he is about the sort of living you undertake when you make a decision to live this way:

I like how bright and open this one is

I like how big the windows are here, I bet if feels much larger inside than it looks from the outside. I'm not sold on this exact design, but I do like how it doesn't look just like all the others. I mean, if I'm going to build my own house, thinking about design is interesting to me too, not just function.

This one appeals to me some

In all, I gorged on these sorts of images and videos. And then looked around and decided I live in a pretty small apartment already, even though it's not portable or tiny, and I like the open space that I have in the front room. I think I would like putting the bed in a loft and thereby not having to use as much space. But otherwise things are pretty good as they are. I think there's a ton of clothes and craft stuff that I could purge, but right now living in a tiny home is a dream. And I'm working on one dream at a time. Currently, finishing school. There's time for this tiny home dream later.

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