When we began discussing a tiny home, we agreed on one thing immediately: that we were not going to simply shrink and compress a traditional looking home onto a trailer, gables, dormers and all. Instead we wanted to lay out some simple parameters of necessity and function and let the form emerge intuitively.

In order to avoid any special permitting requirements when transporting our home, we, like most tiny home builders, chose to design with-in the maximum dimensions of 8’-6” wide and 13’-6” high which provided us with our starting point. The decision to build to the maximum width of 8’-6” for the entire length of the trailer was clear but our uncertainty of how to handle the roof was solved through a simple design exercise.

form process1We prioritized our needs and tried to proportionally represent them in relation to the space we had available to us [both the amount of actual space required as well as the amount of time spent in each space played a role in deciding how much space these tasks needed). Placing the loft over the kitchen made sense based on similar square footages and that decision resulted in the highest point of our tiny home. Spaces like the bathroom and storage areas do not require high ceilings and so a single line drawn from the high point of the loft down to the lower ceiling of the bathroom becomes a longitudinal shed roof that removes the unnecessary weight, construction costs, associated with this 270+ cubic feet of unneeded space. Additionally, the form that emerges becomes much more aerodynamic when transporting it with the lowest portion of the tiny home facing the oncoming wind. The final tweak to the roof line comes from the need to increase the height of the entry point into the loft. The formal result is this modified SHED.

A note on storage: We do not have a lot of “stuff” but the stuff we do have is integral to our lives, health and happiness and a dedicated space for this is a must. That is why we plan to incorporate an externally accessed “gear closet” on one end of our home. This space will contain our outdoor gear including snowboards, snowshoes, inflatable kayak, climbing, mountaineering and camping gear, etc…

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