Tiny House, Tiny Living, The Tiny Life.

Archive for September 2009

Mini Mobile Made It!

I wanted to let you all know that the folks over at Mini Mobile blog have finally made it!  They have finished building their tiny house.

minimobile

Here is what they said:

On level ground, from the peak to the ground, we are 13′ 4″. If you see an over pass that says 13′ 4″, find another rout. They generally mean it. We didn’t have any problems because we took a truck rout to Ballard (the neighborhood in Seattle where we settled).

So here we are. We still need to put trim on the door, hook up a shower, paint inside and out, along with many other tasks. But we feel like in a way, one adventure has been completed and another is starting.

Check them out here

15 Easy Ways to Cut Consumption

Found this over at Green Planet, some great ideas.  Many of us are already doing things in our lives to reduce our impact, but you  might still learn something :)

Reprinted: Green Planet 9/09 Sara Novak

Consumption costs us money and the more simply we choose to live the more money we can save. The thing is, no matter how eco-friendly the products that we buy may be, they still come with packaging, they still take energy to make, and they are nearly always still trucked from somewhere. My biggest/most obvious eco-friendly tip of the year is consuming less (energy, water, “stuff,”) is better for the planet.

Easy ways to cut your consumption:

1. Bring a reusable bag wherever you go. Excess bags just add to the landfill and you don’t need them in the first place. There’s no reason not to do this. Try an easy Chico bag you can carry with you.

2. Ditch the processed food. It takes unnecessary energy to produce it, as well as tons of packaging.

3. Make your own cleaning products. Cleaning products (even eco-friendly varieties) often come in plastic bottles and they are trucked in from who knows where wasting tons of fossil fuels.

4. Calculate your water footprint. How can you know where you need to cut water usage if you don’t know how much you’re using and where you’re using it?

5. Don’t drink milk. Livestock consumes much of the land on the planet, whether for meat or dairy, and creates literally tons and tons of pollution, estimates are in the 1/5th of all greenhouse gases range.

6. Wear less makeup. Using less makeup will save us on resources and money, and you’ll look better too.

7. Drink less bottled water, try to drink none. The U.S. sends two million tons of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottled water packaging to the landfill each year. Just drink the tap.

8. Wash your clothes in cold water. About 90 percent of the energy used for washing clothes is for heating the water.

9. Pass up the fast food joint, bring your own grub. Let me count the reasons why. There’s the immense shipping programs emitting harmful gases, the millions of tons of waste generated annually, and not to mention the total lack of nutritional value in fast food restaurant’s most popular menu items.

10. Skip Starbucks and brew your own coffee. Once we factor in the cost of the gourmet coffee and the cost of driving there, each time we brew a cup at home, we save about the equivalent of a gallon of gas.

11. Shut down your PC. If every American worker remembers to turn off their computer at night, the nation’s companies would prevent the release of 39,452 tons of carbon-dioxide emissions, save $4.7 million in utility costs, and reduce energy consumption by 54.3 million kilowatt-hours per day.

12. Skip the store bought cereal and make your own granola instead. Cereal usually comes in a plastic bag within a cardboard box that all gets thrown away at least once a week if not more.

13. Become a weekday vegetarian. By cutting meat out of your diet entirely you save 5,000 lbs of carbon emissions per year, so even reducing your meat intake to two out of seven days will still make a big difference.

14. Grow some of your own food. This way you don’t have to buy it and it’s about as local as possible.

15. Add insulation to your attic. The Rocky Mountain Institute estimates it will save you 2,142 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions–through the heat your home retains in winter and doesn’t gain in the summer–and hundreds of dollars in lower energy bills.

Pot House

Here is a really interesting idea, a pot house.  Its a gigantic vase that has been configured to have a table and bench, that can convert to a bed.

pothouse

Here is what Shedworking says about it:

The genuinely unique African Pot House from Dingley Dell (featured earlier today on the BBC’s Working Lunch) is a shedworking atmosphere with a difference: it measure 3.5m x 2.5m and is made from light but sturdy Fibrostone. Though designed to seat half a dozen people for dinner or cocktails, it would make a fine garden office – I can see Shedworking’s own Garden Show Editor Emma Townshend for example using it as a writing studio.

The table can be recessed into the bench, while the basic model has a tented ceiling, rustic matching cushions and curtains and a suspended candelabra. Window positions can be altered to suit the buyer’s tastes. The Deluxe model comes with full electrics including warm up under floor heating built into the walls, thermostat control, and light fitting in the roof.

pothouse2

House Of Straw

strawjeted

Here is an interesting machine that takes waste stalks from hay, corn etc. and outputs these beams that can be used as structural pieces.

Reprinted: Treehugger 9/2009 Trey Framer

StrawJet, of Ashland, Oregon, has developed a unique process for the creation of structural building components from a variety of waste agricultural stalks. Essentially, they have created a machine that takes waste stalks and creates a tightly wrapped beam which can then be applied to many different facets of construction. The cables are made and wrapped without glues, resins or chemicals and are made completely from waste material. As long as we are growing food there will be straw, so why not use it creatively?

Buildings made from straw are beautiful, insulating and can be found all over the world, but they are typically made of straw bales or straw panels. This new application of straw is sure to push the boundaries further and may help with the many bureaucratic issues that come with natural building in areas under the jurisdiction of archaic building codes. StrawJet recently began working with CASBA (California Straw Building Association) and SOAIA (Southern Oregon American Institute of Architects) on interior infill wall applications for homes and commercial spaces and is sure to be a prominent player in the future of straw building.

One major component of StrawJet is that they really are serious about sustainability across the board. One of their first implementations of the technology was in the West African country of Malawi. StrawJet was able to create tobacco drying sheds from waste stalks of the tobacco plants, eliminating the need for the illegal deforestation that has decimated the local forests (to the tune of 33,000 hectares annually).

The use of StrawJet has the potential to curb carbon usage from deforestation by upwards of 10% as well as eliminate the current practice of burning waste stalks. In an area that is so dependent on its natural resources, it is important that environmental problems be addressed responsibly. They have even created a version of their multi-wrapper machine that can be powered by pedal for operation away from the grid.

Check out the StrawJet system here, or how it can be used as infill in a curved wall.

Rocker Couch / Bed

Found this at Macros Media, which is a design students website.  I couldn’t figure out his last name, but he is Marcos, a Argentinian Designer.  I like this Couch because not only is it stylish, but converts to a bed.  See the photos of it and some of His other designs.   Source: here

rockercouch

LAMINAS2

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