Off the Grid (119)

Seaside Cabin Built by Bruno Atkey

The wilderness seaside cabin is 43 miles from the nearest road and is on the westernmost point of land on the ocean side of Vancouver Island. It is 20′ × 24′ and framed entirely from beach wood. All the wall and roof sheathing boards are split from cedar on the site, as is the roofing, which is 3′ long. It was built 1987.

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Van Life in Olympia



At just 21 years old, Milla Delphine knows what she wants in life and has a plan on how to get it. Ever since she was little, Milla has dreamed of living on a sailboat. Converting a van to live in full-time was initially just a plan to allow her to save more money in order to manifest her nautical dream; yet in the process, Milla has completely fallen in love with van living…

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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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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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The House-Box

Our home, completely designed, restored and converted by ourselves, is a 7.5-ton 1979 Bedford TK. To the naked eye it looks like a traditional tweedy handmade home, but scratch the surface and there’s enough sustainable technology to enable us to reduce our combined outgoings from £800 (when we lived in our last “house”) to just £20 on LPG!

We have a comprehensive PV solar set-up, powering a 450-amp-hour bank of AGM batteries, on which we run just about anything we want…

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Eat Dog's Driftwood Beach Shack

Photo by Lloyd Kahn

…Eat Dog built a tiny house in a semi-hidden ravine leading down to the same beach. (I walked on this beach many times in those years and never spotted his shack.) He lived there for about two years, until getting to work as a gardener miles away in the “civilized world” got to be a strain, and he abandoned the place. Soon others moved in, notoriety followed, and it too was confined to a fiery ending…

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Beautiful Japanese Tiny House on Wheels



It’s possible that this is one of the smallest homes that we have visited on the show so far and yet without doubt it is one of the most spectacular in its design. Japan is a country already world-famous for its small space designs, and so it should come as no surprise that when Japanese master craftsman Tagami Haruhiko turned his attention towards the tiny house movement, amazing things would happen.

The home is crafted wherever possible from locally sourced and natural materials, predominantly cedar. There is an architectural edge to this tiny house on wheels which seems to draw inspiration from the work of Frank Lloyd Wright, yet which has been given a unique and bewildering touch of Japanese-design…

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Roundhouse Living in Wales

While not included in the print edition of Small Homes, this spread will be included in the ebook edition, and links to a very readable PDF.

Hi folks. I live in West Wales, UK, with my partner Faith in a roundhouse I designed and we built in 1997. It is about 85m2, (850 sq. ft.) in size. It cost £3,000 ($4,500) to make initially, and we have spent another £1000 or so on it in the 18 years we have been living here.

It is based on the type of roundwood frame and turf-roofed houses used by Celtic, Mandan, Miwok, and Pomo peoples, plus some modern things thrown in, like windscreen and double-glazed windows, wood stove, running water (hot and cold), solar PVs on the roof, and a wooden plank floor. We are off grid.

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