Tiny House, Tiny Living, The Tiny Life.

Posts Tagged Outdoors

Happy Halloween!

I normally only post Monday to Friday, but since its a holiday I decided to do a quick post.

Check out Green Costumes for kids over at Inhabitat

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Living Big Outdoors

One thing about The Tiny Life is that having a small hool4me encourages you to spend for time outside.  This has a huge appeal to me because I love being outside and enjoying various activities such as gardening, backpacking, grilling etc.  I plan to extend my Tiny Home’s square footage with the use of Outdoor Living areas.  I am sure most people can figure out what I mean by this, but essentially it is an outdoor space which uses natural elements to create a room like feel.

The advantages of an outdoor space is huge because it’s very cheap and can be done without permits or inspections (with exception of larger decks and electrical).  You can have a rather large area for very cheap and allows you to spend more of the year outdoors or handle having a large dinner party or cook out.  These things come in all flavors from a picnic table to 40 square feet of granite counter tops with a full on stainless steel kitchen.ol2

I have often thought of owning two or three separate plots of land where I build these outdoor spaces and just tow my house from one to the next.  This allows me to migrate with the seasons (job permitting) so I can go North for the summer, down South for the winter etc.  This way I could maximize my use of these rooms and have the outdoor spaces’ plants geared to bloom when I will be there.

So here are so design ideas and photos for some inspiration in your spaces.

Encourage the winter sun, block it out in summer

With a tree canopy or a pergola with vines, in the summer the leaves will grow to block the sun and in the winter the leaves will die to allow more sun to warm the space.ol3

Outdoor garden screens

To add privacy, define the space or block winds use hedges and boarder plants which are taller than your eye level.  This lets you establish where the space starts and ends, can give the area a bit more “room” like quality and block wind if you are in a windy areas where in others you might want the breeze for warmer climates.

Use vegetation to shelter outdoor living space

The Use of trees to create a ceiling is a great way to soften light and provide cover for when it rains.  A large tree can block allot of rain.  In addition it prevents the need for building an actual roof, which costs more and needs to be permitted.

Consider shade and shelter fabrics

Kent over at the Tiny House Blog did a great post about keeping cool with Shade Sails.  These are simply a triangle of fabric that blocks the sun, are really inexpensive and work really well.  When I traveled to Australia these where everywhere and if you have ever been in the outback, you know it’s really hot and sunny there.

Log Home

I stumbled across this from our friends over at Materialicious,log1 It’s a “Log Home”  haha get it? Ba-Da-Psssh – Clicky Okay corny jokes aside, the aesthetic of this is a really interesting collision of rustic extreme meats modern extreme.  With all walls except the one being entirely made of logs, I love the look!

It also brings about an interesting point.  Many of us want to take our tiny homes to a wilderness setting, an area that is untouched, that hasn’t been ruined by McMansions.  With the logs being on most of the sides, the house can easily blend into the natural surrounds.  This idea is interesting because you are minimizing the impact, not as we normally think of it as in renewable resources or recycled products, but in terms of Nature’s aesthetics. log2 You are essentially able to keep what we find so great about a forest intact even with placing a house in it.

The Designers website is in French, but here is what it roughly says when I ran it through a translator:

Flake House, house wandering with the road gauge, is conceived to equip the places where it fails and to thus transpose them in strange vision. A “madness” which Marie skilfully “low tech” and “high tech”. The treatment of this poetic shelter is connected more with one object found than with an artifact. The madness is presented in the form of a cast solid building, monomatière (natural wood) broken in her center. This definite irregular break the sequence of entry and delimits space serving as been useful space. The interior treatment of the madness contrasts with the irregularity of the made exterior facade of logs. This space is punctuated random openings arranged between the logs of the walls.

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Urban Assault Vehicle, Dump Truck or Mobile House?

If you where to see this thing rolling down the street, you might pass it off as a dump truck, but when you see an arm extend and ATV drop down, you might be wondering “what the hell?!?”6-24-09unicat1_rect540

That pretty much what I did, but when you see this Truck’s interior, it’s amazing!  I am not quite sure who the intended market is for this, but whatever market requires a mobile home with bullet proof glass and espresso machine, yeah that’s the one…. What!?!?  Regardless, this truck has tons of great design Ideas, its put together well and it certainly embodies the adventurers/outdoor spirit.

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The vehicle comes with:

  • Double bed in living area
  • U-shaped seating unit converts into additional double bed
  • Separate shower and toilet room with doors
  • Usable dry storage with radiator drying
  • 3-flame stove
  • Conventional oven with steamer
  • Dishwasher
  • Espresso maker
  • 26 gallon fridge with freezer
  • 3 wardrobes
  • Aluminum exterior storage boxes
  • Solar system
  • Water cooled 7.2 kW diesel generator with water cooled muffler
  • Music system throughout with DVD player, satellite TV
  • Low voltage XELOGEN lights throughout
  • Lights in outside storage compartment
  • 177 freeze proof drinking water tanks with built in water filtration system
  • 8.8 gallon hot water-heat exchanger
  • 52 gallon freeze proof waste water tank
  • Removable sprayers on bath and kitchen faucets
  • 18 kW central heating system
  • 5 kW integrated air conditioner
  • Integrated storage compartment for ATV in the back