Monthly Archives: August 2013
I’ve quickly come to the conclusion since moving to my small house that one of the things that drew me to the small house movement is something I won’t attain: great decorating skills.
Face it. Those pictures of quaint cabins in the woods in all their natural beauty, the interior photos of open loft spaces, beautiful woodwork and wonderful paint selections are attractive. But not everyone has the skills necessary to achieve or maintain those ideals.
My tiny house doesn’t and will never look like one of those beautiful places. There are benefits to me of living smaller, but the aesthetics I love aren’t attainable in any space. I just don’t have that vision, talent or skill.
One of the reasons I needed to downsize and live smaller is that I can walk into a room and step right over a pile of laundry without noticing it, paying attention instead to the interesting light fixture or the family pet on the other side of the room. Putting that ability to work in 300 square feet intensifies it. Half my house is filled with OSB board and studs right now. I have to really concentrate to recognize that. Detail isn’t my strength.
Tiny house photographers are good at focusing on the strengths of a small house design and enhancing those strengths. But my ability to focus is completely different. They notice before taking the picture what they need to omit. I notice after the picture is taken. Sometimes long after.
I don’t really want to give up the aesthetic qualities. Sooner or later (probably sooner) I will move to town and buy a “small” house that’s around twice the size of the one I now live in. But being able to walk to work or the store, being around other people, having access to internet and cell service regularly, saving on gas and time all appeal to me too much for me to stay in the country.
Will I have a garden on the two acres instead? Almost definitely. And I would be more than happy to rent the small house to those curious about downsizing or smaller living.
I doubt I’ll ever see things the same as I did before downsizing and living smaller. Small has had a huge influence on me. I am not interested in buying what I don’t need. I love simplicity and minimalistic living. I don’t need or want a lot of space. But I’d rather do that in community, and for me that means city living in a larger space. Just with a smaller house mindset.
Since moving to the cabin, I’ve learned more about why I’d prefer a tiny house community. A community would potentially offer encouragement, information, and expertise.
There are certain parts of tiny house building that I am not good at. I dropped a 2×10 on my foot this past week trying to unload by myself. Plumbing is definitely not my forte, and by the looks of the pipe I nailed into, neither are certain types of carpentry. I can now admit that as much as I value independence, I also sometimes need others who share an interest who I can assist and who can assist me on jobs that take more than one person.
Living small is, for me, best done in community. As is any part of living, really. Especially if that community values independence, as well.