We are Jake & Kiva and we have been building our tiny house on wheels for over two years. Most people are stunned by how long it has taken us, since you often read stories of tiny houses being built in just a few months! But our journey has been anything but straight-forward. Our project began after we quit our jobs and moved away from the city, with dreams of an alternative lifestyle and a simple but comfortable home. We wanted to do everything ourselves, and film the entire process for YouTube. We thought it would take us 6 months…
Welcome to another episode of… Tiny Nest! What started out with a few family and friends following along, has steadily grown to over 17,000 YouTube subscribers and thousands of followers across social media. Thinking back to our first few episodes, it’s hard to believe that it got off the ground at all… but the time was right and there was a huge gap to fill when it came to DIY tiny house resources. Once we started to realize that interest in our YouTube channel was growing, we began to put more time and effort into the quality of our videos, making them as engaging and informative as possible. More time spent on videos meant less time building, which prolonged the process to the point where we felt over-saturated and burnt out… after taking a break, the cycle started over and has resulted in a particularly drawn-out project. But the traction we’ve gained online has ultimately driven us to make even more out of what we have. Since we used Sketchup to design our house from scratch, we’ve created resources for others who might want to follow that same path. We’ve also made video tours of some other tiny houses as well as some features on the company that manufactured our trailer. You can probably start to imagine how distracted we’ve become from our actual build! But we can’t complain. Another product of our online work is the connections we’ve made with many interesting people inside the tiny house world. We’ve attended the Tiny House Jamboree twice as vendors (to promote our channel and resources) and it’s clear that the movement attracts a wide variety of people with different motivations for going tiny and for getting involved in the community. It’s been great to receive encouragement from both our viewers and those within the industry.
Our YouTube channel is meant to be educational for anyone who is considering building their own house, and our building series shows what it’s really like to tackle this kind of project as amateurs with little/no experience. At the time of writing this, we have over 60 building episodes, and over 100 videos total.
We are currently living about 80% in the Tiny Nest. There’s a temporary kitchen set up, but the shower is not operational yet, and we have numerous cabinets and storage pieces to build. It really made a difference to our morale to get what we call the “nerd station” set up in the living room so that we can relax and watch a movie with our goofy golden-rottweiler Ben (who has been allocated half of the L-shaped couch).
When the moon is out, it shines through our loft windows onto our king-sized mattress and the fresh air coming through the open windows is amazing. We feel so close, yet sometimes so far, because there always seems to be something slowing us down… but we’re committed to completing the project (including the YouTube series) so we can move on to the next phase of life, which will be to settle into our home and continue to improve our lifestyle for health and happiness.
You can follow us:
Kiva & Jake