Tiny in the Media!

Well, it’s been two weeks since Nicky Duenkel and Judy Pratt moved into Tiny, and they are settling in splendidly. There continues to be much interest in Tiny, and yesterday and today, Tiny was featured on two television segments for CTV Atlantic and CBC TV. It’s exciting to see Tiny in action, and so well loved and used.

Tiny is every bit the dream home that Nicky and Judy imagined, and as is said in the CTV Atlantic interview, they are “living small and loving it!”

Click here for the CTV interview.

Click here for the CBC interview.

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Moving Day: Tiny Home on the Highway!

Well, we all know that all good things come to an end… but they also get hitched up to a tow truck and move down the highway to their new home! And that’s what happened with Tiny!

The official moving day went swimmingly. The winds were low, which is always a bonus when trying to move a home down the highway. Tiny was hitched up to a tow truck, hired for his experience in towing mobile homes.

The first challenge was getting Tiny out of the driveway, past some trees and under some power lines. But, it ended up clearing everything with no problem. Just a short drive up the road, and onto the highway, and Tiny was flying.

On the highway, we had to make a detour up and over a bridge, because the tow truck driver knew it was one of the lowest bridges in Nova Scotia, and it was likely Tiny would not have fit! Thank goodness for hiring a professional, or the results of that bridge meeting could have been disastrous!

Tiny did wonderfully on the highway. She rode smoothly, with little movement. She even got weighed along the journey. Matt was nervous about how everything would add up, given the trailer was only rated for 18,000 lbs — but, she came in at 14,300, which was a relief to all.

The last hurdle was getting Tiny up a fairly steep driveway and into her new home, but with some skilled manoeuvring, she made it and got settled right away. And as an added bonus, when we opened the doors, everything was still in tact and nothing had bounced around. Whew!

It was sad to have Tiny leave the driveway and the family, but so lovely to see her in her new home.

Favourite Feature #5: The Doggie Elevator!

This may be the only Tiny Home out there right now with a doggie elevator! That’s right — a doggie elevator!

This particular feature arose out of the need to transport the clients’ Corgie from the bottom floor to the top floor, because the stairs are too steep and too hard on his back. With need, comes innovation, and so Matt innovated the idea to have a doggie elevator that moves up and down via a winch system.

As with everything in Tiny, this was completely custom made. One of the main challenges was actually finding the space where this dog-evator could drop down in between the stairs, the cupboard, and counter — all the measurements had to be precise!

The end result is a one-of-a-kind Tiny Home feature, that has the Corgie and his owners happy at the outcome! And as you can see, it has the smallest Howling Dog Construction crew member excited to try it out!

 

Favourite Feature #4: Crafty Cupboards

Cupboards are essential for any home; but in a Tiny Home, they are even more essential. Matt and the clients wanted to find ways to maximize every available space in the kitchen, creating a kitchen area that is not only spacious, but stores a surprising amount of items.

All the cupboards were handmade and custom built to space, out of plywood with a maple face, and finished with varathane to give a smooth, durable, and natural finish. Some of the interesting features of these cupboards are drawers at the bottom of each cupboard where the toe kick normally is, avoiding 4 inches of wasted space. The drawers feature full extension sliders, to easily access all parts of the storage space. The drawers were also specifically designed to accommodate all their kitchen appliances and pots and pans, ensuring that every item had its place.

The bank of drawers next to the desk function as office supply storage, with the top drawer containing an inner charging station to avoid unnecessary clutter from electronics.

Finally, to allow two people to easily work together in the kitchen, a custom fold-up countertop was designed, maximizing the working and chopping space in the kitchen.

Favourite Feature #3: The Stairs

Next up on Matt’s Favourite Features of Tiny: the stairs!

The stairs are a central part of the overall design of Tiny and, like everything else, have to incorporate maximum storage, functionality, and aesthetics. These stairs took a lot of planning and consideration, and were one of the first things designed in the planning process because of their importance, their centrality in the home, and the space they take up.

The treads are made from maple, and the base is made from high-grade plywood. The handrails and trim pieces are reclaimed and repurposed wood, salvaged from various places and sources. The stairs have been finished with oil, followed by two coats of varathane for a smooth and durable finish.

Since the stairs go up to the sleeping loft, which, due to the height, requires you to be on your hands and knees to enter, the last tread before the loft is extra deep. This allows for a comfortable transition from the stairs to the sleeping area.

Favourite Feature #2: The Ladder

Our next featured design from Tiny is the Ash ladder leading up to the second loft above the bathroom.

The final ladder design emerged after testing out several different prototypes. In the original plan, the ladder was incorporated into the shelving unit itself. But, as the building progressed, and different designs were tested, it was decided that this was too complicated, and the desire to have a simplified design led to the current version.

As you can see from the pictures, the ladder is designed to slide behind the shelving unit, in a space between the bathroom wall and the shelf. The ladder has wheels on the bottom that are only engaged when it is in the upright position to facilitate sliding back and forth. At the top is a simple hook and eye system, allowing the ladder to be slid out; when pulled into position, the hooks automatically engage, holding the ladder securely in place.

The ladder itself is made out of Ash, from Windhorse Farms‘ sustainable woodlot on the mainland of Nova Scotia. We love how it turned out!

Favourite Feature #1: Integrated Couch, Desk & Table

As promised, here is the first installment of Matthew’s favourite features of Tiny. First up, the integrated couch, desk, and table set that was designed specifically for the needs of the owners and for the space.

This unit is a big part of the central house design, and is not only a main decorative feature, but is also a critical piece of the living space. This unit incorporates multiple storage spaces, a shelving unit, a permanent desk and foldaway table, and a comfy couch.

The whole design was a challenge, given the space requirements and the multiple uses and functions the unit had to perform. A lot of thought and prototypes went into this design, and we are so pleased with the results.

The shelf unit functions not only as a needed storage unit, but also as a way to hide the sliding ladder leading up to one of the lofts, and cover the sliding door to the bathroom.

It was important to maximize the storage capacity of the couch unit, by building in storage units under the sitting space. These units also add a great accent of colour and can also function as extra seats when guests are over.

One of the hardest parts was the design of the desk and table unit. The challenge: the desk needed to be a permanent fixture, but the table needed to be able to be stowed when not in use, freeing up the couch space. This design enables the table to be pulled out, while the desk is in use. Matt went through multiple designs and prototypes of the leaf system, finally settling on the one you see in the pictures, both for strength, durability, and ease of motion and use.

The custom-made upholstery adds the final finishing touch to this unit, and creates a very comfy couch and extra bed. It also adds a bright pop of colour to the unit, creating a warm and welcoming space. Overall, this has become one of the most eye-catching and innovative parts of Tiny!