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Nonagan Treehouse



I spent the weekend at Mountain View Air B&B building a canted-wall nonagon yurt treehouse! I worked with SunRay Kelley, Bonnie, Bob-O, and Tyler Smith. This was such a fun project. I spent one weekend helping assemble the walls for the kit, SunRay and his team did the rest during the week and last weekend we built the platform and erected the nonagon yurt.

–Travis Skinner

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Eight-Foot-Wide Home in Kobe, Japan

Like Vietnam’s many skinny houses, this 2.5 meter-wide (that’s approximately 8 feet) house in Kobe, Japan, takes advantage of its narrow site and reaches skyward to maximize livable space—and light.

Japanese studio FujiwaraMuro Architects designed the so-called iny House on a 22-square-meter plot (about 237 square feet) to encompass three dynamic floors, a staircase at the rear, and a central void topped with skylights that allows sunlight to filter down through the level.

The 63-square-meter (678 square feet) residence is clad in knotted timber, with the first floor incorporating an opening for a garage, at the rear of which is the main entrance. On this floor are the bathroom (separated into a toilet room, bathtub, shower room, and sink) and sliding-door storage.

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The Temple of Promise Built for Burning Man

Temple of Promise, the unbuilt temple for Burning Man 2014

Lloyd,

Humans’ first large structures were long houses. Simple pit houses with a circle of lengths of branches or trees were expanded for larger groups by taking those same short spans and arranging them along a line: a Long House. These basis structures are indigenous to almost all ancient cultures. I felt that the temple at burning man needed to be a reference to our most ancient structures; well before the rise of organized religions. These were spaces for the first assembly of a tribe. A time when we all knew each other, when we all built the building, and we all shared risks, adventures, celebrations and solemn moments. The Temple of Promise was about simplicity of sharing as a group.

When I was 15 or 16, I found Shelter in the local library on the same shelf as Frank Lloyd Wright. The two sets of images gripped my and never let go. Wright’s work was both art and craft mixed with aspiration, while Shelter was accessible, immediate and endearing. My copy of Shelter was worn at the edges within a year was very quickly pile of loose but revered pages. Thirty years later, after working in the trades, completing architecture school, and working in the East Coast, Europe, Asia and Australia and moving to the West Coast, I opened boxes of old possessions. Shelter greeted me from the pile. You can only imagine my joy when I realized that it was written and published just a few miles from where I now called home. I can never fully express the joy and insight Shelter has given me. It gave me a direction and remains a strong reference in my life.

Thank you, Lloyd Kahn,
–Ross

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School Bus Converted into Incredible Off-Grid Home



This school but to tiny home conversion could easily be one of the most impressive we have seen so far. When standing inside this home, it’s hard to believe that you’re actually in a vehicle! That’s largely thanks to some great design mixed with skillful execution of the conversion, which involved raising the roof by an additional two feet and cleverly shaping it to feel more like a house.

One of the things that I like most about the idea of a bus conversion compared to a traditional tiny house on wheels, is that they are designed to sustain long-term travel and life on the road. This home in particular is fitted with lots of off-the-grid features including ample solar power, water storage and propane to enable the family to live for extended periods while adventuring in remote locations…

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Young Woman Escapes Crazy Rent with a Tiny House



Increasing rent princes in many cities are encouraging young adults to search for housing alternatives. For Jackie Kemp of Denver, Colorado that alternative came in the form of a tiny house on wheels. Now 23 years old, the budding entrepreneur who lives in the tiny house together with her tiny hound (a chihuahua named Darla) is already well on her way to debt-free home ownership.

Jackie’s tiny home fits in perfectly to it’s country surroundings. It’s situated on a large, rural property where she also keeps her horses. The home allows her to be in an ideal position where she can be around her animals, yet also is in close commuting distance to work…

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Cool Shacks in the High Sierra

Hi Lloyd & crew,

I thought you might like these photos for your blog these were taken in the East High Sierras near Big Pine, CA. This group of shacks houses a pack train that carries tourists up to see a glacier, though no animals were present when I walked by.

They have the delightful “architect-less” simplicity you often see in Alpine structures, seated so well within their environment; William Wurster would be delighted. Note the vertical lift door of the hay barn which is opened with a pulley.

Keep up the good work!

–Andy Asp,
Oakland, CA

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Mystery of the Gypsy Vardo Solved

Lloyd posted this post a little over a year ago; we just received a letter from the builder, Cennydd Rees, with a little info about his build:

Hi Lloyd,

Just to solve the lovely little mystery on your blog, ’tis I, Cennydd Rees. It’s my little bowtop hybrid or camping karutsa. I live with my Bulgarian girlfriend and two children in an equally tiny house in northwest Bulgaria. I am a designer/builder and am now making a much tighter version of the karutsa in your blog.

Just had two families staying here. One a surfer/designer friend doing a Euro tour with his family in his converted van. The karutsa is a subtle twist on the standard gypsy-style wagons, and I am hoping to make a small living with the now mk3 version. Just enough.
Read More …

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Tastefully Built Shipping Container Home

…The shipping container, which was on the property when Troy Walker bought it, provides the solid anchor for the house but is in fact less than half the floor area. Troy is a boilermaker by trade so he knows how to work with steel, cut out the side of the shipping container to open it up, and used the pieces to build the bathroom. The rest is welded up from steel to fit around the windows. Everything is found and recycled…

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