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Micro-Living. Who’s Coming With?

Victor Papanek stated, “We have learned to think of large cars as gas-guzzlers; similarly we must learn to see our homes as the space guzzlers they are,” in his book, “Design for the Real World.”

While space has become an issue as populations increase in a non-linear fashion, other driving factors such as increased mobility, ownership without the mortgage, semi-permanent camping and tourism, and last but not least, the displacement of ‘the material’ for the benefit of simplicity, savings, and a reconnection with others and environment.XO.2.2 2014-09-04 16255400000

“We are designing these homes to empower the owner and offer abundance through a more sustainable lifestyle,” says President and Principal Designer at Modern&TINY, Rob Irwin. “Foresight plays a huge factor in designing for the people, for the future. As the older demographics find themselves at the psychological cliff of retirement and the connotations that come with it, they find themselves in a position of choice and most of the time they want solace, simplicity and the opportunity to maintain a high quality of living without the overhead of a mortgage, or the maintenance that comes with owning a large home.”

In addition to the allure of micro-homes with the aging population, younger professionals are too finding themselves in a position to maintain a high quality of life, be near their place of employment while being near the progressive bustle that a city brings without the high costs of renting.

These ‘coming of age’ professionals also have a very distinct outlook on life and their place in it. No longer is the world seen as an immense sphere of endless resource offerings, clean air and crystal clear water. To many, living in a micro-home is a statement about who they are and a physical externalization of their beliefs about wanting to live in a clean, safe and sustainable way.XO.2.2 2014-09-07 18322700000

Modern&TINY understands the implication of continuing to spread into nature with our meandering communities of cul-de-sacs and pavement and believe that micro-living could just well be another tool in the toolbox of progress and a chapter in the book of shifting paradigms.

Top 5 Tiny Floor Plan Designs Considerations

There are innumerable ways to assess how your tiny can best suit your living needs. I could go on personally waxing poetically about aesthetics, or finishes, or architectural provenance, but I’ll spare you for now on this one. Instead, I will do what I do best and wax in strategic technicolor…

Below, I have put together my top 5 topics to help get you started. There are for certain many more obstacles, and personal slings and arrows to address, but this’ll get ya started. Note: You’ll want to grab a pen and paper for this little exercise.

 1. Lifestyle – Do you have an active lifestyle? Do you like to chill after work watching Breaking Bad? In to ripping down a mountain at breakneck speed on your full suspension custom mountain bike? Have pets? Or do you appreciate the finer things in life like cooking and entertaining friends?

Think about who you are, who you will be  in the future and then think about how each of the activities you love to do or will do coincide with needing specific designated spaces and storage. One other thing is to think about how you’re lifestyle shifts throughout the seasons, as your needs/wants will too. Make a list and break it down by season!

cool-interior-design-ideas-with-long-table_Cool-Interior-Design-Ideas-With-Long-Table2. Personality – We all have a pretty good idea of our particular personality traits. If you’re a little foggy on this, just ask a good friend, they’ll tell ya. 😉

Your personality fits into the design and layout mix in an aesthetic way. People like to have their space reflect who they are, whether this might be crazy pillow covers, art, or cottage furniture. Have fun with this one, as it doesn’t relate particularly close to the physical layout so much as the finishing touches and accents. I’d suggest making a Pinterest board for this one.

crazy reading nook3. Hobbies – Are you a tinkerer? Do you like to snowboard? Ride you road bike everywhere? Do you sew, or knit? Acro-yoga fanatic?

Each hobby requires a certain ‘space’ to practice. Think about your hobbies and write them all down. See if you can’t create a space that acts in a multifunctional/modular to accommodate multiple hobbies. Other than that, keep in mind that your hobby most likely requires storage! Make a list of these and if you are coming up a number of them requiring more space than you need, think about numbering them from least to most engaging/fun and go from there to create your space. Remember, you can always take it outside if you need to.

deskE4. Career – This may not effect too many people when it comes to the design of their tiny, but if you’re like me and work the majority of the time from home, you’ll want a nice office.

Take stock of your current needs for work, or the possible near-term score on that dream career! Do you need a large desk to draw on? Using only a laptop. Keep in mind that many times, because this space is not utilized a lot you can create a drop-leaf desk, or build it in to another existing table, instead of designating an entire space to this.

5. Geographic / Locale – Location is a big one. The allure of living in a tiny is of course being able to be mobile whenever you want. The downside of this is that depending on the original climate the home was built in you may find that the vapor barrier has been placed on the wrong side of the walls and will not accommodate your next move. To avoid this, I suggest staying in relatively the same climate type that the house was built in.

Will you be living in a ‘cooling climate’, or a ‘heating climate’? Is it arid, or is it humid, or even tropical? What are the DOT size constraints on trailer sizes (these vary from state to state)? Will you be mostly bouncing around from park to park, or will you be hooked up to utilities and therefore not need to worry about electrical, water, and heating/ac needs?

I could go on about geography, climate and energy needs, but hopefully above thoughts will get you thinking from a productive and analytical perspective.

 

starboundhouse_zps2be52f8cIn closing, this is a very personal project offering you opportunity to tailor your surroundings toYOU, and who YOU are! Remember, have fun with it and don’t be afraid to make mistakes!

If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original…or COOL!

 

A Small Case for the Tiny Home Movement

Victor Papanek stated, “We have learned to think of large cars as gas-guzzlers; similarly we must learn to see our homes as the space guzzlers they are,” in his book, “Design for the Real World.”

This is the back deck show with outdoor furniture and pergola sunshade
This is the back deck show with outdoor furniture and pergola sunshade

 While space has become an issue as populations increase in a non-linear fashion, other driving factors such as increased mobility, ownership without the mortgage, semi-permanent camping and tourism, and last but not least, the displacement of ‘the material’ for the benefit of simplicity, savings, and a reconnection with others and environment.

“We are designing these homes to empower the owner and offer abundance through a more sustainable lifestyle,” says President and Principal Designer at Phi Logic, Rob Irwin. “Foresight plays a huge factor in designing for the people, for the future. As the older demographics find themselves at the psychological cliff of retirement and the connotations that come with it, they find themselves in a position of choice and most of the time they want solace, simplicity and the opportunity to maintain a high quality of living without the overhead of a mortgage, or the maintenance that comes with owning a large home.”

In addition to the allure of tiny homes with the aging population, younger professionals are too finding themselves in a position to maintain a high quality of life, be near their place of employment while being near the progressive bustle that a city brings without the high costs of renting.

These ‘coming of age’ professionals also have a very distinct outlook on life and their place in it. No longer is the world seen as an immense sphere of endless resource offerings, clean air and crystal clear water. To many, living in a tiny-home is a statement about who they are and a physical externalization of their beliefs about wanting to live in a clean, safe and sustainable way.

The implications of continuing the malignant spread of cities and meandering communities of pavement cul-de-sacs into the very biodiversity we rely upon is certain disaster. While there are other overarching systems in place that top the loss of habitat, this is at least one thing you can take a stand and do something about.