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Posts Tagged Design

Kittie’s Tiny Triumph

This Couch Folds Out To A Bed

This Couch Folds Out To A Bed

Kittie and her husband started out with a minimal renovation. They pulled out the original murphy bed and the original pullman kitchen in order to create a small office nook and a modern kitchen counter, bar and sink area, respectively.

Kittie spends one week a month with her husband in Texas and her husband spends one week a month with Kittie in Tudor City. Before the full-scale renovation, Kittie recalls that she and her husband would “draw straws to see who would pull down the bits of ceiling that had peeled off that day.”

View When Walking In The Door

Kittie enjoyed the challenge of making small seem big so much that she decided to offer her services to all of Tudor City. In the past six months, she has fully renovated her bathroom and closet, and added a dining bar and cooking island, and has done the same for many of her neighbors.

As an up and coming interior designer of small spaces, Kittie’s alacrity for organization is as important as her sense of style. Here, she has managed to carve out space for a fully functioning kitchen, bedroom, and office space to run her business, as well as storage space for both her and her husband’s clothing, shoes, hats, cleaning supplies, bedding and pet accouterments!

Style: Serene, simple (and organized!)

Inspiration: My inspiration is this quote from William Morris in 1882: “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or consider to be beautiful”.

Biggest Challenge: Creating a gracious home with everything I need, including running my interior design business, in a 10′ x 17′ space.

What Friends Say: “I can’t believe how spacious it feels” and “I love the wall color”

Biggest Embarrassment: Anyone who knows me will not be surprised that the upholstery on my armchair is still held together by pins at the back. Sigh.

Proudest DIY: Proudest D-I-Me-and-a-cabinetmaker — my “Stealth Desk” — a complete office hidden out of sight. Proudest DIY: the lampshades I made out of real burl maple veneer for less than $10 each.

Biggest Indulgence: My porcelain tea set, and fresh flowers every week.

Best Advice: Take the William Morris quote above to heart, and donate everything in your home that doesn’t meet those 2 criteria. You will be amazed at how graciously you can live in a tiny space!

kittiehousetour17_rect640

More photos Click the link

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Cape Russell Retreat

front overview

Architects: Sanders Pace Architecture
Location: Tennessee, USA
Project Team: Brandon F. Pace, John L. Sanders, Michael A. Davis
Client: Suzanne Shelton & Corinne Nicolas
Project Area: 16.3 sqm
Budget: $47,200.00
Project Year: 2009

The owners commissioned the architect to design and coordinate construction of an off-the-grid lakeside pavilion with integrated water reclamation and photovoltaic technology for weekend use. A lightweight steel structure was chosen for durability and ease of fabrication. This structure was shop fitted with tabs to allow for the attachment of a secondary skin. In developing this skin the desire for transparency coupled with a passive cooling approach led to a shop fabricated structural screen of 2×4 vertical cedar boards backed with insect screen. Structural blocking located between the vertical structure lends a delicate pattern to the structural skin camouflaging the structure within its densely wooded setting. Towards the water view the cedar skin dissolves and becomes a series of screen panels allowing unobstructed views to the water and mountains beyond. A single 8’x8’ sliding screen panel provides direct access to the water.

Cape Russell Pavilion

Cape Russell Pavilion

layout

assembly

elevationVia

A Dialogue Of Hope

So the other night I had just went to see a movie and soon afterwards ran into some other folks from my high school years.  We started talking about what everyone was doing when one of my friends chimed in that he was writing a thesis about New Urbanism.   We started talking about all these issues surrounding this topic: gentrification, neighborhood schools, the need for anchors in the community and how Charlotte, NC has approached the issues surrounding new urbanism.

two houses and shared space

Later we talked about how the Tiny House Movement fits into this notion of urbanism.  My friend noted that when he reads this site, he gets the notion of building the Tiny House in the woods, away from it all.  It’s true, I tend to focus on this, which I am at odds with.  The fact is to truly maximize sustainability in the highly populated world we live in today, we must come together and live in a more dense area.  I know that to truly usher in my way of living, one that is green and ecofriendly, one that is sustainable, one that focuses on local, one that focuses on community I must live in an area that is more densely packed.  The issues of course is how do you live in close proximity to others, while still having room to roam, to connect with nature and ensure a high quality of life.

Today’s urban centers are as my favorite author/speaker  James Kunstler “the greatest misallocation of resources in the history of the world, you can call it a technosis externality clusterfuck and it’s a tremendous problem for us, the outstanding problem is that there are places no one cares about”.  And that’s the rub, the urban manifestation is a place that no one cares about, that pushes out the poor, the minorities or if that isn’t possible, we turn to the phenomenon of “white flight”.  We talked about how we need to create places that are local, have your anchors (schools, stores, grocery, churches, living, office space and a non-salient parking plan for double the intended capacity), how these need to be with in walking distance to each other, but where you can go to other centers via mass transit that people actually want to ride.  Preferably we want a place where cars aren’t allowed in the main pedestrian areas, so long as you have lots of parking underground that allows the area to be permeable.

Main Street Spring2

As we discussed all these huge issues I realized that this was a really extraordinary event happening, I was in awe!  Each person standing in that circle, talking about these huge issues, these progressive issues, these ideas that I feel will change the world in an impactful way, we were from such wildly different backgrounds.  I am the only self described “eco friendly” person, the others were not a polar opposite, but represented many different sects of society.  I was astonished, not that I think of them as stupid, but that they don’t have a logical reason to know this much about new urbanism and surrounding issues.  That essentially regular people had their finger on the pulse of such progressive and important issues was amazing.

It gave me a glimmer of hope that this dialogue that we were having about new urbanism, environmental issues, sustainability and community/local focus might be happening as a whole with people my age, that this generation, which has been sometimes labeled as useless, might be growing to inspire a new age of responsible and progressive thinking.

ScreenHunter_02 Nov. 21 11.38

Now before I get too excited I took a step back to really look at the group and who we were.  I am seeking a PhD, working for Americorp and running a Tiny House blog, my other friend is a researcher at Duke University, the next girl is a social psychologist pursing her masters at Columbia, finally my friend who is a politician/going to Davidson College, who lost while running for a major office in Charlotte by only 3% at the age of 22 with no money.  These are admittedly not normal people.  But I hope that this dialogue is happening outside of these circles.  That my generation is talking about these issues with their friends, so that when we start taking hold as the baby boomers slip into retirement, that we can usher in a new age of socially and environmentally responsible corporatism in all areas of our lives.

small houses close to each other

Awesome Concept Hotel / Tiny House

hotel-in-tree

Found this awesome concept for a hotel that would translate nicely to a Tiny House.  The really neat thing about this is that the skin of the structure is highly reflective so when placed in a forest it reflects the forest and almost blends in.  The skin more specifically is mirrored so it reflects outside, but you can see through it from the inside.  This affords a 360 degree view of the natural surroundings.  The architect says it would be “hung” from the tree, which seems both unrealistic and very high impact on the tree even if it could hold it.  None the less its a great idea!  Check the architect’s firm out here

camouflage-tree-hotel

tree-hotel-design-drawing

Space Saving Toilet

sink toilet

If you asked me a year ago if I would ever be blogging about toilets, well I most likely would have laughed at you.

I have seen these before, but they are most often conversion kits and a never looked quite as nice.  The Caroma Profile Smart is a Small profile toilet that has an integrated sink that uses the water before it goes into the toilet.  I have told folks about these before and often get this disgusted look, if you have never had to fix one you might not know how they work.  First the water fills a reservoir tank, that tank empties down into the bow through small holes at the top, the water collects in the bowl and well you know the rest.   The water that goes into the reservoir is 100% clean water, same stuff you drink from the tap.

If you are in another country this may not be the case as they sometimes use grey water, which I hope catches on here, but here in the US of A we use the regular water to fill the bowl.  What is more many folks put what are essentially chlorine tablets in the reservoir which creates a barrier if you will.  In fact if you read any disaster preparedness guide they talk about if push comes to shove, you can drink from the reservoir (best to boil).

sink toilet 2

So what’s so great about this toilet first it actually looks somewhat attractive, the second is that it is a very narrow profile, perfect for tiny houses.

  • High efficiency dual flush toilet – 1.28/0.8 gallons (4.8/3 liters) per flush
  • Integrated sink for enhanced water savings
  • After flushing, fresh cold water is directed through the faucet for hand washing and drains into the tank to be used for the next flush
  • Unique water and space saving design
  • Chrome buttons built-in to tapware design
  • Easy installation
  • Large trapway virtually eliminates blockages
  • 12″ rough-in

more here

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