Hi again :)
I (Travis) was browsing the internet for some cool hacks or tips on how to maximize space in a tiny house and found a sweet website. It's obviously important to maximize space because we have very little of it! This is what I enjoy most about this challenge; how can you maximize the usage and appearance of every little thing in your home to make it the most comfortable. As opposed to; how can we fill a bunch of space we don't need.
Having tiny house hacks and lifestyles is perfect while living in a tiny house. But these can also be useful for people who find they aren't using their space efficiently.
Kiah and I (we) are lucky. Our trailer is much bigger than 'conventional' tiny houses. Nonetheless, it's still tiny and we need to be as efficient as possible. We've come up with some ideas on our own, such as a bed above the kitchen to conserve energy consumption for heat as well as maximizing space. But for other things we need community ideas.
Kiah here.... I think this is a wonderful idea. I would not of researched hacks on tiny house living on my own. That's why I'm so lucky to be with a guy who thinks of these things :)
Also I wanted to mention, the reason why I haven't been posting much lately is because this whole leveling/foundation and construction part of the tiny house, is more of Travis's thing. I will be posting more later about home decor/ designing. When we post our "blue print" for the tiny house, I will definitely talk about my ideas and why I wanted to design everything the way I did.
Anyway, let's get on with the tiny house hacks!
I (Travis) found out about 31 hacks from a cool website; http://www.buzzfeed.com/morganshanahan/tiny-house-hacks-to-maximize-your-space#.cupdP7j3y.
I'll list some of the ones I thought were worth mentioning here;
1. Keep your window to wall ratio high.
-This is extremely important. Having a high window to wall ratio creates an illusion that you have more space than you actually do. Mirrors have the same effect. We will definitely have a lot of mirrors around our tiny house. I also love the idea of lot's of windows, because 1) to let in as much natural light as possible which adds to the illusion part, 2) to keep the tiny house cool in the summer, we can just open all the windows. There won't be any reason to have a fan that wastes energy.
2. Create outdoor living space to add the feeling of square footage without the cost.
-This is just like the last piece of advice, create the illusion of space. This is practically the same as having the space... except, of course, in our case, we don't actually have that space.
This is funny because the other day I was telling Travis about my idea for what I would like to do out side the tiny house. Because when we have people over, or like our house warming party, the outside space is just as important as the inside, because we want people to feel comfortable and not feel like we all have to stay cramped in the tiny house to have a party :)
3. Opt for fewer walls, more multipurpose rooms.
-This is a must. I'm not sure anyone could have a tiny house and not use rooms in more than one way. In our case, we plan on using the living room as both that and the dining room. The kitchen will be right next to the bathroom (but far away from the toilet, we don't like poop in our food).
4. Add a loft over your kitchen.
-As we mentioned before, we'll definitely be doing this. The reason is two fold, but the impact is phenomenal; 1.) Uses up some extra space. The tallest person in this house will be me, and I am an astounding 5'7", watch out Shaq! This means our bottom floor can reach up to 6' comfortably for us both. 2.) Having the loft above the kitchen helps us conserve heat.
The calculation of how much heat you'll need is a slightly complex equation. You have to literally figure out how much heat everything in your space gives off, even if it seems negligible. The reason for this is because if you, for example, need your space to be 60 degrees before you can be comfortable, everything that helps the temperature in the room rise is worth counting.
5. Utilize space under stairs.
-Duh. Just... duh.
Ya gotta use all available space for SOMETHING. Most design features will also be functional. That's a must for a tiny house!
Yes! most definitely! I want to design something where the table and chairs get tucked away and hidden. Or have the stairs for book shelves, Travis and I have a lot of books :) Or just for design purposes and adding pictures, make it feel like a home.
6. Put a shelf on it.
-Yes yes and yes. For the same reason above. If there's room, use it!!
7. Create the illusion of vertical space by having low sitting furniture.
- I love the idea, not sure I'd like it in practice. Perhaps you would...?
Not sure the lady would like it either ;) You always gotta run it by the lady. If you don't have the lady's approval before doing something, might as well say goodbye now.
Oh you're so sweet! And right, if the lady doesn't like it then, you have to say goodbye. There's no winning if the lady doesn't like it ;) But I'll have to see some pictures and maybe try it out myself. I'll definitely keep this hack in mind for the living room.
8. Utilize retractable pantry drawers for small appliances.
- I think this is genius. The retractable idea is just absolutely creativity. We want to apply this to the dining room table, I think it'd be great to have a table and chairs that fold in and out when needed to add more walking space when we aren't eating. I think this could also apply to the guest bed. Having a multipurpose couch that turns into a twin size bed would be perfect. Or even a bathroom mirror that works as a mirror (obviously), a small bathroom closet, as well as a medicine cabinet. This is the kind of stuff I'm interested in.
Yes the bathroom mirror is a must for doubling as a medicine cabinet! Travis and I have talked about it, and I don't want anything to sit of the counters. I want things to be tucked away and organized. This helps for multiple reasons; helps me stay organized, makes it look decluttered= the illusion of more space, and lastly not having things sitting everywhere helps keeping your space that much cleaner! And let me tell you all, I LOVE to have my space clean and organized :)
That's pretty much all the stuff I was interested in. Hopefully you all liked it as well. There's a lot of resources out there, more importantly; a lot of people out there willing to help.
This is one of the bigger reasons we are building this tiny home; to connect and send the world a message. Yes, we want something to live in. But more importantly, we want to show the world that it can be done. We don't need 3,000sq ft. to live in and we most definitely can have a synergetic relationship with the Earth without being hippies. Hear Hear!
I also want to mention... I wanted to add this in an earlier post, but decided to wait til another good blog opportunity came up, but I feel this post is as good as any. I'm excited for every aspect of this tiny house adventure. But the number one thing I'm most excited about, is making this feel like a home. Our home. This will be our space and I want to make it feel as comfortable for the both of us, as well as when we have guests. I feel like that's the most important thing to me right now. I want to make this feel like a home for Travis. Also sometimes I feel some people don't understand why we're doing this. They may think, "well just go buy a 'regular sized' house, that's a home" but they don't understand. We're doing this for many reasons and one of them is to show people you can have a small house and make it feel and look just like a home. Like Travis mentioned above, we don't need 3,000 sq ft to make it feel like a home. Lastly, Travis always tells me, it doesn't matter where the home is; it can be anywhere, what matters is where each others hearts are. That's where home is.