A project of Just Fine Design/Build

A project of Just Fine Design/Build. If interested in a tiny house commission: matt@justfinedesignbuild.com

Saturday, December 24, 2011



120 sq. feet

fully insulated

full bed

full kitchen

hot water heater

outdoor shower

composting toilet

120V electrical outlets

greywater system

reclaimed redwood siding and maple flooring

materials cost so far: $5,500

Interior Layout

This is the general scheme for the interior layout, though each component is going to be designed with more detail. The staircase also acts as a closet with treads that open up and act as drawers. The couch is in the corner and the desk in front of the picture window. The bathroom is the cantilevered volume projecting from the side.

So, I'm designing and building a tiny house. Last year one of my students showed me a picture of the tumbleweedhouses and said she wanted to build one and wanted me to help out. I laughed and thought it was funny and intriguing, but inside i was like 'are you serious, you're gonna move into one of those?' Okay, so fast forward six months, and the New Yorker article came out and i was reading it in bed. It was a rare moment of epiphany, aided by some lovely company: It was the ideal next step for me.

There were a few considerations: 1) i loved my housemates to death but don't love my basement room, particularly in the winter, 2) I'd been building chicken coops for the past year, something i'm a little tired of, so it was like a giant chicken coop with new challenges 3) I had been trying to buy a house with friends in oakland for over a year and am convinced this is my only way towards home ownership in the bay area, and 4) After finishing the manuscript and seeing my sweetheart leave the country for a long while i had the compulsion to throw myself into a giant project. Some people do drugs, some people drink, i do really ambitious projects i suppose: an attribute and sometime flaw.

So, I designed it in August and started building on August 30th. I am using our advance from the book to finance construction, but being as thrifty as possible. I bought the trailer used, most of the lumber is salvaged, along with all of the doors and windows, and the siding is all reclaimed redwood fencing I am re-milling that were only $1 a piece!
the final design will have a full kitchen, composting toilet, outdoor shower, sleeping loft, living room, fireplace and eventually a porch swing.

The next phase is doing the interior finish work and custom furniture, that part i've been looking forward to most.