August 1, 2010

These two tiny house have me thinking a lot about what space we really need for living. Both are roughly the same tiny square footage, but both have dealt with the interior in vastly different ways.

This beautiful little Victorian retreat in the Catskills is a great example of what you can do with a space so tiny, and yet fill it with personality.

Sandra Foster took an old 9' x 14' hunting cabin and hunted throughout upstate NY to find salvaged materials to use in it transformation. Old wavy glass windows, screen doors, and handmade scroll trim were all added to the existing structure to create this sweet little Victorian sanctuary. More amazing is the fact that she did all the work herself, and it cost her a whopping total of $3000.

Crystal chandeliers, billowy white textiles, and stacks of old books and china were the final touches to add that sublime and romantic feel. I'm sure that stepping into this place is like stepping into a fairytale. You can see more at the New York Times.

Or there is the opposite approach.

This 130 square foot cabin called the Signal Shed was designed by architect Ryan Lingard to sit in the wilderness near Joseph, Oregon. It was designed as an affordable and sustainable shelter, to meet all the basic needs of an outdoor adventurer. It can be used year round, and is complete with a wood fired stove and portable toilet.

The house is built on a raised platform, so as to disturb the site as little as possible. It is built of entirely wood, with a cedar siding and shutters to close in all the windows during colder months. Total cost for the shelter itself was only $10,000. Not too bad for a fully functioning home away from home.

The interior of this cabin is very utilitarian, with wood floors and plywood finished walls. Can you see they are even eating off of slices of tree trunks as plates? It's very basic and simple. Sunset has more pictures and info here. You can even buy the plans if you want to build a shelter of your own.

So which would you choose?


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