A few weeks ago, I presented the idea of a movement happening around the globe known as the tiny house movement. A lot of people expressed serious concerns about space issues or having children in a tiny house. As such, I felt it due diligence to address those concerns, share a video of Graham Hill, founder of treehugger.com, who turned his 420 square-foot SoHo apartment into a “One-Size Fits All” space, and talk about how to maximize the space you have.
“The simple things in life are often the greatest gifts.” – Bryant McGill
1. Living with children in a tiny house. Is it possible?
Yes and no. But the term “tiny house” is relative, as many people have different views on what is tiny and what is not. If we’re talking about a tiny house on wheels, then it may present some difficulty in having a family of three to four live comfortably. If we’re talking about a tiny house on foundation or even a modular tiny house, then I believe living with a family of three to four people is possible. Take for instance this family of four who turned their 540-square-foot early 1940s recycled tiny house into a welcoming and comfortable living space. I encourage you to check out the link provided and see how this family of four is using their tiny space to live comfortably.
“Living in a smaller physical space magnifies whatever dynamics and issues already exist in a family. But with no place to hide from the people you live with, it forces more open communication.” – Jennifer Langston
I absolutely love what Jennifer says here. This family of four (who she is interviewing) has realized that living in a smaller space does not mean they are less happy; rather, it allows them to become closer, spend more time together, communicate openly, and appreciate the value of relationships rather than materialistic items.
2. Graham Hill’s 420-square-foot apartment morphs into 6 rooms.
In 2010, Graham Hill, who had just spent the previous year living in tiny spaces, bought two apartments in SoHo, NY to turn them into “a tiny space that didn't sacrifice function, but instead that would expand to provide a wish list including dinner parties for 12, accommodations for 2 overnight guests, a home office and a home theater with digital projector.” Check out the video to see this amazing innovation!
3. Maximize the space you have!
In this article on Tiny House Talk, Jay Shafer, founder of the tiny house movement, quotes Greg Johnson in regards to living simpler: “It’s not a movement about people claiming to be ‘tinier than thou’ but rather people making their own choices toward simpler and smaller living however they feel best fits their life.” To me this quote says, as I have stated before, consider what is most important to you if you are downsizing into a tiny house.
A. To provide more space in your tiny house, instead of using space coming “out” of the walls, use the space going “up” the walls by installing hanging shelves.
B. If you are considering a tiny house not on wheels, consider installing a fold-down bed like the one shown in the Graham Hill video. This could be installed in the living room above the couch, as to provide another room for guests or children.
C. Choose elements that are multifunctional. Consider finding a table that functions as a desk as well. In a tiny house on wheels, this super affordable drop-leaf table functions as a desk for daily work or a dining table for two or three. For more creative ideas to maximize living space, visit this article here.
“The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less.” - Socrates
At the end of the day, the decision to downsize to a smaller living space comes down to feasibility. Does it work for you and your family? Can it work for you and your family? Will you make it work for you and your family? Share in the comments below your thoughts on the tiny house movement!