Allotment Sheds

The British concept of allotments might be foreign to most Americans. These small garden plots are temporary, but that doesn’t stop many gardeners from building their own creative allotment sheds—many of which could become a tiny house, as it happened to this man a few years ago.

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An allotment garden, or just allotment, is a small plot in a community garden given to a group or individual for growing food plants. The gardens are granted for a short amount of time and are rotated through different paid memberships. The term victory garden, coined in World War I and II, can also be used for these small (usually between 500-5,000 square feet) plots of land. Allotments are utilized in many countries including Denmark and Sweden, the Czech Republic, Russia and Greece.

While allotments and their sheds are not for residential purposes, many sheds built to house tools and other garden implements become temporary homes for gardeners as they work on their land. These sheds will sometimes have small wood stoves to keep gardeners warm in some of the rainy, cold weather that plagues Northern Europe. Other sheds have seating and tables, cots for napping and small camping stoves or a storm kettle to stir up some fresh garden fare. What is also fun and unusual is how creative some people can get with their sheds by using recycled materials or whatever is lying around the allotment.

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The lovely Katie Lane gardens, cooks and eats at her allotment with a storm kettle and a small gas stove and oven. She writes about her adventures on Plot 15c on her blog, Lavender and Leeks. She even gives us a peak into her “girly” shed on YouTube.

 

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This allotment shed is made from recycled pallets. This website gives you tips on how to build an allotment shed.

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Skansens koloniträdgård

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Photos by Wikimedia, The Telegraph, Mary Ellen Garden, Democracy Street, Rule Brittania

 

By Christina Nellemann for the [Tiny House Blog]

Cedarshed Industries

Cedarshed Industries in British Columbia has been designing and building shed and small structures for backyard use since 1992 and several of their designs could be used as tiny houses—or combined to be a tiny house community—without taking up too much space.

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All the Cedarshed Industries kits are made with Western Red Cedar for its endurance, dimensional stability, beauty and distinct aroma. The kits come as either precut kits that take 2-4 days to assemble with a professional carpenter or as panelized kits that take about a day to assemble. Each kit comes with all pieces including floors, cedar shingles and hardware. A level foundation will need to be installed before the kit is placed.

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The Cedarshed designs that could make potential tiny houses are the Ranchhouse, the Cookhouse, the Farmhouse, the Cedarhouse and the Haida Cabin. The Ranchhouse includes a 5′ wide double door and is available in four prefab kit sizes from 12 ‘x 12′ to 16′ x 14′. It includes a 4′ deep porch, two windows and decorative shutters and planter box. The Cookhouse is available in three sizes from 12′ x 10′ to 16′ x 14′ and has an enclosed gable porch. The Farmhouse has four sizes available from 16′ x 12′ to 20′ x 14′. It also has a double door and a porch. The Cedarhouse is available in five sizes from 10′ x 8′ to 10′ x 20′ and includes a Dutch door. The Haida Cabin is a panelized kit that requires no cutting and is available in 12′ x 8′, 16′ x 8′ and 20′ x 8′ sizes.

Another smaller kit that could be used as a tiny house is the darling Clubhouse. It’s available in six sizes from 8′ x 12′ to 10′ x 20′ and includes a Dutch door, three windows and a drop down window. The Clubhouse could be used in conjunction with another kit to create a tiny house compound.

Prices for the kits range from $2,884 for an 8′ x 12′ Clubhouse to $6,384 for a 20′ x 14′ Farmhouse. Shipping costs will vary by distance and take about 3-4 weeks. The company has a free online catalog where you can view their different designs.

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Photos by Cedarshed Industries

 

By Christina Nellemann for the [Tiny House Blog]

Collaborative Vardo

If you are thinking of building your own vardo as a tiny house or for camping, Instructables recently featured a collaborative wagon built by Paleotool (author of Building a Gypsy Wagon), PaleoPunk and a friend of theirs, AmericanPikey. The instructions for this tiny, wooden wagon are available as a free download. AmericanPikey recently retired and wanted a mobile retirement home, but not an RV. He also wanted the utility and towing cost to be small. The total cost to build the wagon (including the trailer) was $2,400.

 

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The wagon is built on a 10×5 foot flatbed utility trailer. PaleoPunk mentions that flatbed trailers, while expensive ($1,000 for this one) are much easier to work with than a re-purposed trailer which sometimes have to be dismantled and prepared for building. This particular trailer had metal side rails to support the wagon’s walls. The overall length of the wagon is approximately 10 feet long and is 7 feet wide. The floor on the inside is about 5 feet across with one-foot ledges extending over the wheels.
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The wagon has a Dutch door,  the 20 inch porthole windows are made from actual ship portholes, and a Lexan window was placed in the front of the wagon. The bed is about four feet off the floor and has storage space underneath. There is a trap door under the storage area that opens to an enclosed space underneath. Several benches by the bed also serve as steps up into the bed. The wagon also contains a small wood stove made by Marine Stove and a portable propane stove for cooking. The wagon does not have electricity or plumbing.
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Photos by PaleoPunk