The BIG Idea

This year will be one to remember, one we will want to re-live often, a year where the mundane daily tasks in the tiny house will seem so novel to the ‘future us’ .  I’m sure we will reminisce often about that crazy time we built a tiny house and lived there.  The ‘current us’ – my husband Adam and I – have just moved into our tiny house and so the adventure is just beginning.

Before last Christmas, I had never heard of a tiny house, I was in Powell’s the big daddy of bookstores in Portland, OR.  I was searching for a book on building a tear-drop camping trailer.  We had talked about doing this, and for Christmas I wanted to get Adam a book on it.  No luck; – however I did find a book called Tiny Homes: Simple Shelters, and that was that.  I wrapped it up and requested we open one present early because I couldn’t wait to show Adam how much more sense it made to build a tiny house instead of a tear-drop trailer.

About two months into my new obsession with this tiny house concept, during one of our many brainstorming sessions Adam said “Why not?…We can either look back and talk about that idea we had to build a tiny house, or we can look back and remember that tiny house we built.”

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Fast forward to August 2014 and we have been living in the “Redmond Estate” for about two months.  As you can see, this blog was not created to be a record of our process or of each step in building.  The method behind this madness shall remain somewhat of a mystery, mostly because we were far too focused on just finishing the house throughout the building phase.  Plus, that’s not as much fun to write about.


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Adam can make just about anything from wood but had never built a house.  The closest thing was the chicken coop he built when we tried our hand at urban chicken farming a couple years ago.  I had no building experience either but it seemed manageable; it’s hard to be intimidated by such a tiny little structure, but as with most things it was harder than it looked.  Adam did the majority of the building, getting advice over the phone from his dad who was a contractor. He helped us come up with necessary dimensions and plans for each step. I found a house on Pinterest that I liked the layout of and designed it based off of that. We read books, watched You Tube and learned from frequent mistakes.

I highly recommend creating a to-scale model
I highly recommend creating a to-scale model
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I also highly recommend becoming weirdly obsessed with the accurate details in the model, twisting wire into miniature hangers is a valuable use of anyone’s time.

Why, you ask, would we want to live in a tiny house?  Good question…  Adam and I have always lived our lives by following our hearts, dreaming big and not over-thinking things.  I can’t put my finger on why I felt so strongly about the tiny house.  It was a very quick revelation, like many of mine tend to be.  We care about the environment and it’s a huge bonus that living this way really decreases our impact on the environment; however this was not a driving factor in the decision, nor was the idea of minimalism.  We just envisioned ourselves living in one and thought it sounded pretty great.  It also seemed practical in many ways, and that helped us come to terms with any thoughts that we were doing something completely crazy.  We don’t plan to live here long term, though I am almost surprised at how easy and smooth the last two months have been. Our goal is to experience a year living in the tiny house.  We don’t think we could ever sell this house after all we put into designing and building it, and after living in it a year I know we will be even more attached. The versatility of the house will allow us to use it as an additional space eventually, or as a little cabin somewhere, or a number of other options.img_42244.jpg We have loved the simplicity so far and have enjoyed living here more than we even imagined.  It has been an exciting journey so far and we are looking forward to more adventures to come.

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