Whether your house is tiny or whether your house is ten stories tall, a bed is a normal thing you would expect to find in a house. Everyone needs a place to sleep.
Sometimes, you may find normal things in not so normal spaces…
The mattress in my tiny floating home is a convenient *cough* trapezoid shape with three sides against the wall. The short side underneath the fan is exactly 52″ long. I don’t know what Ted Brewer was thinking when he designed this part of the boat. I’m short enough as it is, but at 5’2″ (60″), I’m still too tall to actually fit all the way over to the edge of the bed. I end up sleeping at an angle, or curled up a bit.
The long side is an awkward 100″ from end to end. Lucky for Peter at 6′ tall, he gets to sleep on the outside. It’s hard to tell from the photos but there is a small overhang where I sleep. If I’m not careful or if I try to sit up too fast, I’ll whack my head on the ceiling. I call it ‘the coffin’. It’s actually quite spacious considering I live in a combined total of 360 sf of living space.
The mattress is much too shallow for us to turn and sleep the other way so for now, we’re stuck with the current arrangement.
Sleeping isn’t the only challenge in this funny little space. When I moved aboard the boat, I had to figure out what kind of sheets to buy that would actually fit on this odd-sized custom marine mattress.
I knew I wanted cotton percale sheets. Unlike sateen, percale is a “tightly woven plain-weave” fabric. Sateen weaves result in lustrous, smooth-faced fabric. I like percale best because of the feel. They never pill up and when line-dried, they finish with a tremendously fresh, crisp surface.
I chose a lower thread count of 450 knowing I would be living in the tropics year-round. The higher the thread count, the less air flow through the fabric itself and I wanted to be sure I wouldn’t be trapping in any extra body heat. In fact, I started out with a light comforter covering my sheets, but now my bed only has a fitted bottom sheet and a flat top sheet. Even this is often too hot.
When searching for percale sheets online, I had to search for California King deep-pocket sheets. You get what you pay for, but Tribeca Living had a very affordable price tag on a 4-piece sheet set. The fitted sheet is only 84″ long but with the deep pockets, I can rotate it a bit and get it to cover the odd shaped mattress of mine. The rest of the sides are far too long so I just tuck them all in around the edges.
The flat sheet or the top sheet covers the entire mattress, boasting a massive 112″ in length. Again, I just tuck the extra fabric in underneath the mattress.
Making the bed on a boat is a decent work out. It’s not uncommon to break a sweat while wrangling the mattress on the inside corners and tucking in all the excess fabric. Maybe someday I’ll pattern out some custom fitting sheets!
Until then, I’m happy to use oversized sheets to make sure I cover all of my tiny trapezoid bed in my tiny floating home.
What is the most normal thing you have in a not-so-normal space?