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The Smallest House in Italy - Down Below

At just 75 square feet this little house, designed by Marco Pierazzi, occupies a tiny spot in an alley near Castel Sant’Angelo and St. Peter’s Square in Rome. While the floorspace was minimal, Marco took advantage of the height and built a loft layer above the kitchen/living area. A tiny bathroom is tucked into the back of the home.

The loft bed turns into a sofa during the day and a trap door, leading to a small staircase, can be lowered to increase the upstairs floorspace. But as you can see from the photos this small space isn’t just about utility, it’s decked out in fine Italian style.

The linked article reports:

“Architect and designer Marco Pierazzi saw the potential in an abandoned, one-room alleyway house just steps from Roman landmarks like the Pantheon and Saint Peter’s Square. He bought it, fixed it up, and lived there with his wife until their child was born. Pierazzi now rents what he calls the “smallest house in Italy” to friends, acquaintances, and tourists, making it a convenient place to stay on a Roman holiday.” – Yahoo Finance

See more of The ‘Smallest House in Italy’. Photos by Matteo Rossi.

Below: Front door, and only side with windows.
The Smallest House in Italy - Looking in Front Door

Below: Main living area with the table folded away. Notice the bathroom in the back.

The Smallest House in Italy - Table Down - Bathroom Door Open

Below: Now the table is out and ready for a meal.

The Smallest House in Italy - Kitchen Dining

Below: A peek down below through the loft’s trap door.

The Smallest House in Italy - Down the Stairs

Below: The loft in bed mode.

The Smallest House in Italy - Bed Loft

Below: The loft in sofa mode.

The Smallest House in Italy - Sofabed Loft

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YesterTec Complete Mini Kitchen

Building a tiny house kitchen can be time consuming depending on your carpentry skills and what you choose to put into it. Costs can skyrocket if you have expensive tastes and hire professionals to help. One option is to get a complete prebuilt kitchen unit – although even these range in price from several hundred dollars to several thousand dollars.

For example the Kitchen Armoire pictured here costs about $8,000, and it’s probably a best in class example. When not in use it hides away behind elegant cabinetry and contains a sink, refrigerator, convection oven/microwave, and ceramic cooktop. The cooktop and oven are also setup to shut down when the cabinet doors are closed as a safety precaution. As you scroll down the page you’ll find less expensive options.

The benefit of an all-in-one kitchen for a tiny house is that your cost is fixed and the time to install is shorter. The disadvantage is that you won’t have as many choices as a kitchen you build yourself. At the end of the day it is something to consider designing into your tiny house project.

YesterTec Complete Mini Kitchen - open 2


Above: YesterTec Kitchen Armoire


gallery kitchen design micro kitchen


Above: Micro Modular Kitchen

Johns Strand Hideaway Kitchen


Above: Hideaway Kitchen

Avanti Compact Kitchen

Above: Avanti Compact Kitchen

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Pinterest is a great tool for creating photo collections. I’ve made some topic specific boards for things like bedrooms, bathrooms, and interiors. When noodling through future design ideas it’s nice to be able to see what other people have done. You can find all my Tiny House Design boards on Pinterest.

If you’d like to play with your own floor plan layout ideas give my free Print & Cut Worksheet a try. You just print it out with your own printer or have it printed at Kinkos on cardstock like I did. Then cut out the shapes and play with floor plan ideas.

Top photo by Ziggy from Small-Scale.net. Below are more examples from the tiny house kitchens board on Pinterest.

shabby chic tiny retreat

Photo above by Shabby Chic Tiny Retreat.

Tennessee Tiny Homes Pawaws Cabin

Photo above by Tennessee Tiny Homes. This might win the award for the smallest kitchen.

Mendy's Tiny House Kitchen

Photo above by Tennessee Tiny Homes.


tiny texas

Photo above of a kitchen by Tiny Texas Houses. Photo credit to Mother Earth Living.


Photo above of an Airsteam kitchen.


Photo above of a small house kitchen in Berkeley. Love the ships ladder.

ikea kitchen

Photo above is an IKEA inspired kitchen.

See more examples from the tiny house kitchens board on Pinterest.


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Moschata Rolling Bungalow

This tiny house was built by Shawn and Jamie Dehner, the folks at THE small HOUSE CATALOG. It’s a 20-foot mobile tiny house with two lofts – one for sleeping and one for storage. The total square footage is 160 square feet and it has a bathroom (with a flush toilet!), kitchen, and high ceilings. The attention to details and level of craftsmanship is very high as you can see.

The plans for this design are available on their website as well as several other designs for small homes ranging from 480 to 856 square feet. They are in the process of building one of their own designs now, the Bee Keeper’s Bungalow. You can follow the progress on that small home on their blog.

To see all their designs visit THE small HOUSE CATALOG. Photo credit to THE small HOUSE CATALOG.

Moschata Rolling Bungalow - Porch Sitting

Moschata Rolling Bungalow - Entry Moschata Rolling Bungalow - Kitchen Moschata Rolling Bungalow - View from Kitchen Shawn and Jamie Dehner - Toilet

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Christopher & Merete - Living Room

You might be familiar with the movie called TINY. It was produced by Christopher Smith & Merete Mueller – but you may not have seen photos of their tiny home. It’s just 127 square feet and located in Colorado. They’d never built anything like it before, so the whole project was quite an adventure. Christopher and Merete shared their biggest challenges with the folks at Apartment Therapy:

Christopher – “Every step of building the house was a challenge — mostly because I didn’t know what the heck I was doing. But I think if I had to choose one part, I think the electrical system was most intimidating.”

Merete – “Driving the house from the building site in Boulder up to the land here in Hartsel, which is about 125 miles away, was a bit challenging. We didn’t move the house until that morning, so we had no idea if it would fall off! Luckily, everything went smoothly. The drive from Boulder to Hartsel usually takes about 2.5 hours, but took us about 8 hours that day, since we were stopping constantly to film shots of driving the house down the highway for our documentary.”

Right now they are busy making the rounds of all the local film festivals sharing their film. They even recently moved the house up to Telluride while attending the festival there. You can track their progress on their Tiny Facebook Page and on Twitter.

See more photos at Apartment Therapy. Photo credits to Ashley Poskin

Here’s a preview of the movie. Keep scrolling to see more photos of their home.

TINY: A Story About Living Small (Teaser Trailer) from TINY on Vimeo.

Christopher & Merete Interior Christopher & Merete - Kitchen from Living Room Christopher & Merete - Kitchen 2 Christopher & Merete - Kitchen Christopher & Merete - Bed Christopher & Merete - Bathroom Christopher & Merete - Desk Christopher & Merete

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Three Tent House - Exterior and Arbor

Recently Kirsten Dirksen visited Glen and Gerry at their unusual home in northern California. It’s a tiny tent cluster of three tents they  connected with a series of decks and paths. Mostly they live outside, cook outside, and bathe outside. The temperate climate of California makes that possible.

When they first bought the land their intention was to build a home, but first they wanted to experience the property to help inform the future home’s placement and design. But something about outdoor simple living must have convinced them that their tents were the way to go.

They bought the tents from a company called Sweetwater Bungalows and made some careful customizations. The main tent measures 14′ by 20′. The master bedroom tent and guest room tent are smaller. An old shed left by the previous owner serves as the bathroom but the shower is outside.

Everything was done on a frugal budget – but their careful attention to detail shows clearly in the style and presentation of the place. It’s really amazing that so much could be done so well with so little. My kudos to Glen & Gerry!

Three Tent House - Bedroom Three Tent House - Beroom Tent by Koi Pond  Three Tent House - Exterior View Three Tent House - Exterior Three Tent House - Interior of Living Tent 2 Three Tent House - Interior of Living Tent Three Tent House - Kitchen View Three Tent House - Outdoor Kitchen Three Tent House - Path to Bedroom Tent Three Tent House - Shower Three Tent House - Steps down to Living Tent Three Tent House - View onto Deck

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One of my readers, Richard, sent me these photos of a tiny house he built from a set of my free tiny house plans. But you’ve probably noticed there’s something a little odd about his house. Truth be told it’s a 1/9 scale model built using basswood, balsa wood and polystyrene. Richard likes to build scale models, mostly radio controlled trucks, and wanted a tiny house for his backyard rock garden. The 8×12 tiny house plans were just what he was looking for and after some careful craftsmanship he had his tiny scale dream house. Nice work Richard, thanks for sharing!

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The following is a guest post from Speak.Thunder Films

How It All Began

When Christopher decided to buy a desolate piece of land in the Colorado mountains, he was hesitant to tell me at first.

It was a frigid day last February. I had sent him a short text message from work, “What are you doing?” and it took him a while to reply. “Nothing much. Work,” he said. And then, “Might go up to the mountains.”

It wasn’t until that evening when he told what he’d really been up. That he’d skipped work and called some mountain real estate agents on a whim, then drove up to meet one, and found a piece of land that seemed just right. There was a pause. He looked up towards the ceiling. “I put down an offer,” he said with a hopeful grin.

I didn’t have to ask why or what he would do with it. I knew this land was the most important piece of a dream he’d been constructing for years: a small cabin in the mountains, a porch with two rocking chairs, a pick-up truck, a dog, and possibly a banjo. It was just 4 months before his 30th birthday and this dream was starting to feel urgent. “If I don’t do it now, when will it happen?”

So maybe it surprised him when I matched his scheme with an even crazier notion.

“Let’s make a documentary film about it,” I said.

The Film

Nine months later, Christopher’s 130-square foot tiny house is half-way finished and our film is underway.

In addition to following Christopher’s attempt to build his own tiny house from scratch, teaching himself the necessary skills as he goes, we’ve also been interviewing other tiny house builders and dwellers across the country.

We’ve spoken with Jay Shafer in Sonoma County, with Karen Chapple, a professor of urban planning at Berkeley, who sees tiny houses as a solution for low-income housing in cities, and a wide spectrum of other tiny house owners, and people who have built homes with their own two hands.

We’re interested in questions about home and place: What makes us feel at home, and what makes a life full? We’re interested in the ways that other people have chosen to simplify their lives, paying attention to quality over quantity—and how these choices have helped to them to feel more satisfied, more at home.

Christopher’s tiny house project is as much about building a life for himself that feels right, as it is about learning how to frame or roof a house.

If you or someone you know lives in or has built a tiny house from scratch, shoot us an email and tell us about your story. We would love to meet you and hear about how you have made a home, and what makes your life well-lived.

If you’re interested in the project, you can follow us on facebook, visit our website.

The film is scheduled to be released in Spring of 2012. In the meantime, take a sneak peek at our teaser trailer:

TINY: A Story About Living Small (Teaser Trailer) from TINY on Vimeo.

Photo credit for “Window Tape” and “Roof Trim” is Kevin Hoth, “Christopher Merete Window” and “Behind the Scenes 1″ is Avy Harris, and “Behind the Scenes 1 & 2″ is Merete Mueller.