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
by Lynn & Don Ventura
Our “tiny home” isn’t your standard, however, it is a “tiny (temporary) home!” My husband and I built our custom woody teardrop (Benroy model) three years ago and have enjoyed every minute since. We can’t go anywhere without sometimes literally hundreds of folks coming by to check it out! In August we took it, with our 1951 Chevy pickup, from Florida to Michigan, Canada, & New York and even shared it with a bus of Japanese tourists in the Shenandoah National Park on the way home! (Needless to say they’d never seen anything quite like it in their country and had to take pictures of it (and us) to take home.)
While this is based on the original, it has modern upgrades including:
- 5′x8′ base to accommodate a queen size air mattress
- door on both sides for easy ingress/egress
- open/close windows complete with screens
- custom square tube frame for durability
- larger tires than typical with “store-bought” frames
- outlets/lights inside & out
- wired for TV
- A/C (hidden in the trunk on the tongue)
- completely oak wrapped, including fenders (regular metal fenders underneath for durability)
Unfortunately we are now moving on and need to find it a good home with someone who will treasure it the way we have.
We live in Central Florida, just west of Daytona Beach in the little “town” of Barberville.
Check out our blog showing how it was built! http://dlvent-teardropper.blogspot.com/
Oh yes – the price! $6,000 and I’ll cry all the way out the driveway! We really have enjoyed it that much!
by Jay Livesey
I’ve been really impressed with the Tiny Homes book by Lloyd Kahn and Tumbleweed’s DIY Book of Backyard Sheds and Tiny Houses by Jay Shafer and I wanted to tell you about my sheds. Having been in the construction business for 30 years I have become a believer in affordable and efficient house design. I am primarily a remodeler and in recent years have been specializing in finish and tile work. Two years ago I started building high end garden sheds in my converted cabinet shop. I offer a few basic designs plus will build custom. Sizes are from 8 x 10 to 12 x 32. Complete turn-key package or just a shell; with a variety of interior finishes and siding, roofing, window and door options. We can deliver anywhere in Maine and New Brunswick.
This is a 10 x 16. It has a cedar shingle roof. The windows are tilt sashes with crown molding. The siding on the lower half is pine that is back primed with a 3 coat paint finish outside. With natural cedar shingle siding on the upper. There is room for a loft and seating area by the windows. Would make a nice guest house or coastal cabin. The door is a thermal wood door in fir finished in red oak stain and helmsman poly. The deck is pressure treated and so is the 2 x 6 subframe. All framing is 16 oc. The original asking price was $5,800.00
Livesey’s Little Houses
206 Montieth Rd
Bridgewater, Maine 04735
The summer camping season is starting to heat up and for those Tiny House Blog visitors who are lamenting the loss of the tiny Retro Traveler, the Toad Camper is a nice and affordable alternative to the ultra lightweight trailer. Toad Campers are built by hand in North Carolina with the best American-made products and can be towed by most 4-cylinder vehicles. What I thought was a typo, was that the campers start out at $2,999 for a basic streamlined weekend trailer.
The company offers four basic models: the Micro, Micro XL, Tadpole, and 20-foot Bull Frog. Each of these models have very flexible floor plan arrangements including small bathrooms with showers, full or queen beds or bunk beds. They also come with the following features:
- Heavy duty axle with bearing buddies
- Insulated frame
- 13″ Radial tires
- Laminate flooring
- Various color choices
- Microwave, refrigerator, air conditioner and flat-screen TVs
- Wash station or full kitchen
- Central roof vent
- Durable rubber roof
The Toad Camper company also offers their trailers as rentals so you can test drive their different sized options. They also build custom trailers for just about any other kind of use including kayak trailers, refreshment trailers and restroom trailers. Continue Reading »