Outbuilding Turned into a Little House

by Donna Corley

My name is Donna Corley and I am from West Virginia. I had an idea to turn an outbuilding into a house for when I had company and they would have somewhere private to stay. It is a 12×34 outbuilding. We are not all the way done yet, we are going to add cedar siding later, but these photos show the progress. On the inside it looks like a cabin.

outbuilding

We started in February 2013 and got done with it in April 2013. I love it. We are going to put cedar siding on in the future to make it look like a little cabin on the outside. It already looks like a cabin on the inside. I have to say, this building has come a long way!

Before

1565 1669 1848

1759 1149155_632874500058138_631268029_o

After

1146975_632881096724145_138259987_o 1097823_632879020057686_333445299_o 1011562_632883266723928_243338667_n 64323_632883133390608_1352484228_n 1963 1948 1893

Appalachian Trail Shelters

In an initial armchair approach to preparing for some longer and tougher hiking trails (I’m starting to train for Mount Whitney), I’ve been reading some great books on people tackling the Pacific Crest Trail and the Appalachian Trail. The popular book “Wild” was fun, but I am really enjoying “Awol on the Appalachian Trail” by David Miller.

william-penn-shelter

David’s 2003 hike is documented in this beautifully written story that really brings the trail to life. He also goes into details about his “homes” along the trail since he rarely used a tent: the AT shelters that dot the 2,172 mile long passage across the mountain range. There are around 250 backcountry shelters along the trail where both section and thru-hikers can stay for free. Most of them are basic and open to the elements, but some are actually beautifully constructed and take advantage of views, light and airflow. Most of the shelters are near a creek or a stream and some have a privy or basic toilet nearby. They are kept clean and in shape by hikers and trail volunteers.

Long-Branch-Shelter

The Long Branch Shelter in North Carolina. Photo by Hikinginthesmokys.com.

Most of the shelters have basic sleeping platforms, but no cots or beds. Food is either kept away from bears and other critters in boxes or hung from strings on the ceilings. Some shelters have picnic tables and food prep areas and most of them do not allow open campfires.

icewater-spring-shelter

The Icewater Spring shelter in North Carolina. Photo by Deep Creek Cabin Rental.

AT-shelter-Ottawa

A shelter in the Matane Wildlife Reserve, an extension of the International Appalachian Trail. Photo by the Ottawa Rambling Club.

AT-Shelter-Rangeley-Lakes

A shelter in Rangeley Lakes, Maine. Photo by Rangeley-Maine.

IM000060.JPG

The Derrick Knob shelter in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Photo by Wikipedia.

johnsspringshelter

The John Springs shelter in Virginia. Photo by Virginia Places.

Chestnut_Knob_Shelter_Oct_2010

The Chestnut Knob Shelter in Virginia. Photo by Barbara Council and path-at.org.

 

Top photo: William Penn Shelter. Photo by White Blaze.net.

By Christina Nellemann for the [Tiny House Blog]

Cowboy Cottage

by Cheryl Preston

I am new to the world of living “small” and just joined your group last night. In the next four months, I will be downsizing from a 2000 sq foot farmhouse I’m renting into a 440-sq foot 2-room cottage that I call the Cowboy Cottage.

This little cottage started out as a shed built by its original owner who had a small vineyard and needed a place to make the wine. The second owner decided to build out from the shed and add a living/sleeping space for his visiting grandkids as a playhouse.

Cowboy cottage

I purchased the property (a total of 10 acres with the main house I keep rented out) with my husband in 2005. After he died the following year, I decided to rent the main house out and turn the playhouse into another cabin to rent out. I used the original 1940’s stove (a castoff from the main house) as the inspiration piece and created a vintage western theme and named the guest cottage “The Cowboy Cottage.”

living room

I have some success renting out this little cottage as a vacation getaway, but have now decided to downsize and move into the charming Cowboy Cottage. The drive will be an additional 30 minutes to work, but at last I will be able to enjoy the fruits of my labor.

living room 2

I took out the closet and had a full-size Murphy bed installed. I had the plywood countertop taken off and had a nice piece of molded countertop added; updated the fixtures, laid down 5″ T&G yellow pine flooring throughout, added a wood stove, and western touches including a 5′ longhorn rack I picked up in Texas. I put in a hot water tank, small septic tank and insulated and sealed off the attic crawlspace over the living area. I also had 2 stables built under the part of the shed that originally housed a tractor.

bathroom

Unfortunately, I cannot get a CO from the county to put in a separate electric meter because the shed does not have a 3′ required crawlspace so the power and water come through lines connected directly to the main house, 125′ feet away. Since I will be moving out there full time, I’m looking at having a new well drilled and looking into solar power as an option.

kitchen

I was out there today taking measurements and trying to figure out how I am going to “fit” into it, but I’ve stayed in it many nights while out there for a weekend retreat; very different than actually moving in. But I am bound and determined to be out at my property at last.

kitchen

Here is what it looked like when I first moved in, before the deck and stables were added (circa 2007) and a couple of before and afters the inside remodel in kitchen. Reduced the double bifold doors that lead into the bathroom down to 1 bifold door and added a new wall where the other bifold door was.

before

before kitchen