Anyone who’s a fan of Etsy knows you can spend too many hours browsing the wonderful stores and handmade items on the online crafter’s marketplace. One such item is large enough to live inside. Tom in Canaan, NY owns the Etsy shop pinecountry and is selling custom build Vardo wagons to be used as campers, retreats, hideaways or a tiny house.
The Vardo featured above is 8′ 6″ long, 6′ 5″ inches wide and 5′ 5″ tall. It only weighs 1,100 lbs empty and is made of lightweight pine laminated and bonded to plywood. It is going for $7,000. Tom said this adds strength which allows for fewer braces and less weight. Tom has 15 years of experience building with wood and usually builds country style tables. He started building the Vardo as an alternative to camping in a tent.
“We first thought we would build a teardrop trailer, but then we fell in love with the Vardo design,” Tom said. “Our take is a more country than the traditional gypsy wagon. To us it combines the best of the Vardo design and a simple rustic cabin into one.”
Tom finds the building process interesting and definitely different from a pine table and enjoys the complexity of this type of build.
“All of the compound angles make the build a challenge,” he said. “Part of the charm I think of my Vardos is the multiple angles.”
Tom is available to build any custom feature a client may want. From the start to finish the build typically takes about six to eight weeks since he only builds one at a time.
“Sleeping in the Vardo is wonderful,” Tom said. “It is insulated and tight. So it is pretty quiet inside. We climb in at night while at a campground and once we close the door we don’t hear the noises outside.”
Photos by pinecountry
For anyone who has dreamed of having a real log cabin in the woods, but still wants to keep it small, Washington based Mr. Cabin, Inc. builds substantial and very affordable log cabins that stay under 200 square feet. Rhett Conner and Robert Burrington of Mr. Cabin also claim that you don’t need level land to have one of these cabins. Many of them have been built on hillsides that still have beautiful views.
Rhett and Robert are childhood friends with over 45 years of exterior and interior construction experience and build tiny cabins and other structures like garages and sheds out of real four-inch milled logs. To them, real logs add more value to your home as well as beauty and warmth. The logs are protected with metal or cedar roofing with an eight-inch to one-foot overhang and some even include dormer windows. After construction and when the logs have had time to dry, each of the cabins are chinked to close up small gaps and add insulation quality.
The largest cabin is the Grizzly (show below). It’s 10×20 feet with a loft, a nine-foot sidewall and measures 14 feet at the peak. The Grizzly sells for around $11,600 if built on site and $9,600 for the milled kit which you put together yourself. This price does not include the dormers. The smaller MaMa Bear cabin (shown above) also has a sleeping loft and runs about $6,600 for a built cabin to $4,800 for the milled kit. The kit is not available for purchase in Washington and Oregon. Final costs of the cabins will also depend on the types of windows, doors and roofing. Please contact Mr. Cabin for questions on cost, building services and kit delivery.
Photos by Mr. Cabin, Inc.
Inhabitat (one of my favorite sites) recently featured this rustic, but beautiful gypsy wagon (one of my favorite tiny houses) which sits in the forest near Kootenay Lake in British Columbia. The 8 foot by 20 foot wagon was built on a $100 salvaged 5 ton chassis, with 2×4 construction and curved rafters. It cost about $8,000 to build and took several years.
Most of the building materials for the wagon were recycled. The floor is locally milled hemlock tongue and groove and the windows were second hand finds from the local classifieds. The exterior shingles were cedar “seconds” split with a hatchet. The round window was ingeniously made from a 1970′s picnic table and is framed with rope for a natty, nautical style. The curved roof is covered with flexible metal sheeting and has two, curved Lexan skylights. The interior of the wagon is covered with stretched canvas, stapled into place and painted with white wash. Under the wagon is space for the storage of supplies and firewood. Continue Reading »
The theme of this year’s Burning Man was Metropolis, and the event’s temporary home of Black Rock City was buzzing with urban energy, wonderful, creative neighbors, and interesting camps.
Many of these camps had their own versions of tiny houses, and like last year’s post, I thought I would feature a few of my favorites.
This year, our neighborhood of 3:30 and Istanbul (see the Black Rock City map) was lucky to have the Neverwas Haul as a corner beacon. This “mutant vehicle” is styled as a steampunk Victorian house that you could actually live in. In Black Rock City, it’s helpful to camp near a larger structure so you can find your way back to your little home in the dark. Continue Reading »