The Shelter Blog has been inactive since May, 2019. Too much to do! From this point on, Lloyd’s Blog will have the buildings, vehicles, and home-related posts such as what has previously appeared here. Go to

Gypsy Wagon (24)

Andrew Campbell's Gypsy Wagons


Hi there,

My name is Andrew Campbell. I live in Plain WA, and was staying in my new gypsy wagon in Port Townsend last week when I ran across a copy of your book Tiny Homes on the Move. Lo and behold on the cover was a picture of Steve and Katy’s bus. Steve works with me here in Plain in my wood shop. Anyway he said I ought to send you some pics of my gypsy wagons. The red one I built two years ago and the blue one I built for my oldest son to live in when he goes to college in a couple years. We will camp out in it in the meantime and use it for guests to stay in. Will send more pictures and info, if you are interested. I have no website. Just finished the blue one so no great pictures yet, but that can be arranged any time if you are interested in more.

Love your books, love what people are doing with small spaces. Started my woodworking career building boat interiors, so I love fitting out small spaces.

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Uber, AirBnB, and Tesla Challenge the Status Quo

It was through AirBnB that I discovered the so-called tiny house movement after someone in Seattle listed his hand-built gyspy wagon was available for rent in his backyard for just $40 a night.

Tiny houses are usually under 200 square feet in size, but generally have all the amenities of a home — kitchens, baths, bedrooms, etc. — just less of them. An enterprising person can buy a 20-foot trailer from a local big box store and build a house on it for $30,000 or less. There’s actually nothing illegal about such buildings, or even parking them in your driveway, because they’re considered a temporary structure. They only run afoul of local zoning laws when they’re declared as your legal residence.

Still they’re proliferating across the country as people opt to not burden themselves with a mortgage and reject the trend toward building McMansions with all the attendant resource waste they represent. Tiny houses also offer a low-cost housing solution that’s allowing several Oregon communities to meet the needs of the homeless……

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Toyota Ski Chalet


I thought you might get a kick out of this “Hippy Shack” I built on the back of a 1988 Toyota pickup. I use it as my ski chalet. It has a 7-foot-long ski locker and a heated boot locker. A domed skylight provides passive solar heat, but it also has a propane heater and a wood-burning stove.… Also a sink and a stove with an oven. Read More …

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Paleotool's Vardo

The Vardo

Here is an extremely well-documented build with plans of a beautiful vardo.

“This is my home-built trailer using classic and modern building techniques and style. Based on traveler’s and “gypsy” wagons from Britain and France as well as sheep wagons from the western U.S., I am keeping this to the absolute minimum in size and weight. I don’t plan to live in it full-time so it can be thought of a base camp. I have mulled it over for a very long time and was torn between this style and a teardrop design. Each have advantages but this just seems to suit me better…”

The build can be seen on Paleotool’s blog.

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Zyl Vardos

The Fortune Cookie was featured in Tiny Homes on the Move. Here are more examples of Abel Zimmerman’s wonderful work:

The Fortune CookieFirst: Wood creates its own pathways. I am only following as best I can.

Second: My work is about people. Every time I collaborate with somebody on a little house, some new “flowers” seem to bloom in the world. Despite the newness, I more often intend to build things that feel “magnetic” and familiar. If people appreciate it 50 years later, then I/we have done the right thing. Read More …

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