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Archive for the Tiny House Category

Barcelona House

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I like allot of the styling of this house, but I am not a fan of the weird angles and I am usually a fan of the weird modern stuff.  However, I do light the really pallet and the accent lighting is a really great touch in this 500 square foot apartment. Whats really interesting is how they have some several areas of exposed ceiling, which looks like an old mill. I could sit here and try to rationalize the sharp angles, so here is what the site said:

Design of this 49 sqm apartment in Barcelona gets its inspiration from Japanese origami art. One wall which separate all functions of the apartment made with this style in mind and that is enough. When the designer create the wall the apartment already had a shell of simple concrete walls. Some parts of ceiling are still uncovered so futuristic design also has rustic elements.

The presence of the separation wall can be felt from the entrance to the apartment. Although all benefits could be seen just from the inside of the apartment. It adds feeling of movement and hidden spaces because of its diagonal form. The furniture in the apartment correspond to futuristic design. It is simple with straight lines. The same could be said about colors in use. Black and white is always part of futuristic interiors. In the end, the apartment design with all its experiments made small space look much more bigger than it is.

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More here

Cage Homes

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I found this story over at CNN, its about cage homes in Hong Kong.  If you haven’t heard about these, they are essentially bunkbeds that are sealed off with cage wire so that people can lock them when they aren’t there.  They are the size of a single bed and are about 4 feet tall for each “unit”.   You have to share a bathroom with everyone, but the kicker is this, guess how much it costs for one of these in Hong Kong?  $167 a month!

There has been recent outcry about the deplorable living conditions which a large number of people live in.  Above is a photo of one of these cage homes that was used in an art exhibit to raise awareness of the growing trend.  Among the cage homes, cubical farms have been cropping up where people pay to live in, about the same rate.  In a city where houses have sold as much as $9,200 per square foot, no wonder why people go to these extremes.  The questions is, what is the solution?  With such densely populated urban centers, space is getting less and less accessible.

Read more about it at Reuters

EXO HOUSE

Last week I wrote about the Katrina Cottages, which where used to help address the need for housing after Hurricane Katrina. I then found this designer who talks about how FEMA addressed housing need before these where built. We used camper trailers, according to this article:

102,000 travel trailers and mobile homes that FEMA purchased after Hurricane Katrina. The price tag for the trailers was more than $2.6 billion, according to FEMA. Despite their cost of about $15,000 each

FEMA later sold those trailers for $1-$2, yes, one to two dollars each!  Anyway, this designer thought there had to be a better way and putting aside the fact that FEMA should have thought of this before, here is what he came up with.

The EXO House is a temporary structure used to house refugees and disaster victims quickly for much less than $15k.  I was thinking what could we achieve with these for homeless folks?!?!

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House Trucks

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We have had several readers write in about house trucks, which isn’t a new concept by any means, but perhaps a precursor to tiny houses?  They have a certain charm to them that RV’s lack and makes me think of gypsies for some reason.  Anyway, there is some romantic appeal to them that I can’t put my finger on but regardless they represent a subculture in the Tiny House Community.

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Reprinted: Here

The Morisons exhibited their self-sufficient wooden house-truck, customized from a decommissioned fire engine and containing, next to a stove and pot plants, a library of apocalypse-themed fiction. Tales of Space and Time, as it was called, embodied a jauntily over-optimistic attitude to surviving the end of the world, simultaneously mocking the ‘art will save us all’ attitude of some contemporary civic reformists. Art won’t save Folkestone. I hope something does though – something real, something solid.
Jonathan Griffin, Folkestone Triennial, Frieze, Issue 117 September 2008

Ivan Morison: What made you build your first truck?


Roger Beck: The first one I call my escape vehicle! I grew up in LA, a metropolitan, screwy city. And so it just got to the point where I just had to get out. So I left a whole bunch of stuff I didn’t want to get rid of at my parent’s house and got into my first house car and headed north. I couldn’t head south ’cause I had long hair and didn’t want to cross the Mexican border; I couldn’t go any further west; the east coast was nothing more than big cities to me and so I decided to go to Canada!


So, it was my escape route. I got to Oregon and then I did a stupid thing. Me and a friend ripped a tape deck out of a logging truck and I was arrested the same day and I was put on five-years probation. And in those five years I built my second house-truck that had a lot of problems. I drove it to California again to see my parents and my father and I built my third truck. He really helped me build a house on the back of a truck. I travelled most of my travels in that one.


I had the idiosyncrasy of trying to distinguish myself as a New Age American Gypsy and not a hippy living in a school bus with a bunch of mattresses in the back. That’s not a house-truck, that’s because you’re homeless and you can’t afford to live in an apartment, which you’d prefer to do. I had no desire to live in a house. I had my house; it was just on wheels.

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Ivan: Was there anyone doing this before you in America?


Roger: For me, when you think about house trucks you’ve got to go back to the depression. People were living in rigs because they couldn’t afford to live anywhere else.

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Katrina House

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I have seen these around, they are sort of similar to shot-gun style houses, which I have toyed with as an option.  This model is 308 square feet and can be built very quickly.  They were used in Katrina to rebuild or simply start from scratch,  some neighborhoods.   I like the simplicity of it and yet they are very attractive looking.  Here is what Lowe’s has to say about them:

Originally designed as a dignified alternative to the FEMA trailer, the Katrina Cottage has evolved into a nationwide sensation that is finding popularity as affordable housing, guesthouses, resorts and camps. Marianne Cusato and a team of designer have partnered with Lowe’s to bring the Katrina Cottages to market at plans and material packages. Cottages in the Lowe’s series range from 308 ft. up to 1800 sq. ft. Several of the cottages have grow options that allow the smaller cottages to be expanded over time.

The construction time of a Katrina Cottage is dependant on the style and type of cottage being built. A cottage can be done in as little as 6 weeks, but variables, such as weather, may come into play. Always talk with your contractor when working out build timelines.

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check it out here

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