I've lived in a tiny apartment. It was about 350 square feet and was my own little piece of Los Angeles. I lived there for several years and was very good at maximizing space and only keeping what I needed. Then I moved to a house over twice that size and then I moved again into a house twice the previous house's size. Each time acquiring more stuff to make my home feel comfortable, lived in and cozy.
As a designer, the thing people want most in their homes is comfort - they want their houses to feel cozy so they fill them with stuff. But perhaps the answer isn't to get more stuff, it is to get less. If you missed my post Tiny Houses: Living Large on Monday, I suggest you start there.
In my tiny house frenzy, I picked up Tiny House Living: Ideas for Building & Living Well in Less than 400 Square Feet by Ryan Mitchell was released last month and has several solid reviews on Amazon. I buy so many design books that I thought I would start sharing one with you a month.
This book is interesting if you're into tiny houses or living small, but probably a little fantastical for others. I can imagine many people reading this book that is supposed to promote tiny house living and simply think, not realistic or I could never do that. In other words, you have to be a bit of a believer or, at minimum, be open to the possibility of tiny house living to enjoy the book.
In my opinion the details and examples that could help turn non-enthusiasts are missing from this book. A glaring omission was not noting how many square feet each tiny house featured contained. It would make sense if you're talking tiny, you tell readers how tiny each home was. With a notation on square footage, the reader could see what 84 square feet looks like versus 400 square feet.
There were also mentions of storage solutions and ideas without showing a photo or going into further explanation. The closest the author came was Chapter 7, which probably won't surprise you was my favorite, Designing a Tiny House. Not only were there practical tips like put money into the roof and mechanical systems, but also psychological ones. For example, putting the front door at the front of your home (rather than the garage door) is a statement of priorities - telling visitors they are more important than your car.
This is a very basic book, too basic for design enthusiasts or those that want specifics about building a tiny house. It's basic in the writing and in (sometimes blurry) photographs. The bottom line? Entertaining if you're into tiny houses, skip it otherwise.
WOULD/ COULD YOU LIVE IN A TINY HOUSE?