Tiny House on Blocks

Chris is an ex van and box truck dweller who is currently building a tiny house for himself, his girlfriend Kristin and her small dog, Daisy. Influenced and inspired by Deek Diedrickson’s , Lloyd Khan’s and Jay Shafer’s books, Chris has decided to chuck a “normal” life and live in the 8 foot by 12 foot structure on his parent’s wooded suburban land.

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In a humorous and grating way, Chris is documenting the trial and error he goes through while building his  abode. He knew that he didn’t have any prior skills before starting the project, so he doesn’t sugarcoat it and describes both the progression and the frustration in frank terms.

“Whenever something seems pretty straightforward, my brain translates that to “quick” and/or “easy.” I bet there are carpenters who could have gotten this job done in a couple hours. Maybe quicker. That’s not a realistic goal for me. What I need to focus on is staying sane and not ramming a screw through my eyeballs with an impact driver. Today was a success because I made progress. Let’s not talk about how much progress, but rather reflect on the fact that I’m a reasonably sane man with vision in both eyes.” Continue reading

Tiny House Fair

The Yestermorrow Design/Build School in Vermont will be hosting the first ever Tiny House Fair June 14-16, 2013. The fair will include presentations on tiny houses from Jay Shafer of Tumbleweed and Four Lights Tiny House Company and Deek Diedrickson of Relaxshacks as well as workshops on how to design and build a tiny house, finish carpentry, using recycled materials, alternative power, composting toilets and creating a community.

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Registration is open to the first 100 people who sign up and the $300 cost will include all workshops, presentations and meals. Cabin lodging on the Yestermorrow campus will also be available for $50 for two nights. Participants may also camp on-site for $20 for two nights and the lodging will be free if you bring your own tiny house or camper. Off-campus lodging includes a hostel and several hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Yestermorrow offers over 150 hands-on courses per year in design, construction, woodworking, and architectural craft including a variety of courses concentrating in sustainable design and green building. Operating as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization since 1980, Yestermorrow is one of the only design/build schools in the country, teaching both design and construction skills. Our 1-day to 3-week hands-on courses are taught by top architects, builders, and craftspeople from across the country.

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Photos by Yestermorrow Design/Build School and George Soules with David Cain.

Concession Trailers as Tiny Houses

On a fall trip to Oregon, I saw what looked like a tiny brown house parked in a truck and trailer rental lot in Klamath Falls. The owner told me that it was a summer concession trailer built specifically for serving coffee and sweets. It is 8×15 and about 3,500 lbs. and looked so much like a tiny house that I was wondering if other concession stands could also be turned into a small house on wheels.

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Concession trailers are created specifically for serving food or beverages on the road or in parking areas. They range from mobile food trucks to trailers towed by larger vehicles. The design of concession trailers will sometimes reflect what they sell and will be decorated with a tropical theme for Thai food or a classic 50′s theme for hot dogs and corn dogs. Most concession trailers are equipped with industrial and public food-grade equipment or sometimes they are stripped so you can install your own equipment. Many of them already contain the necessary plumbing for water, propane and electricity. Concession trailers can range in price from about $40,000 to about $6,000. Continue reading