House, meet readers, readers…this is our House. The 550 sq.ft cottage below has been home since late 2011 and there is an interesting story of how we came to meet.
We’d logged five years (and one Design on a Dime episode) in our previous small (or so we thought at the time) 1000 sq.ft Silverlake house. It was our first shared home as a couple, and then as a married couple. Everything was nice, comfortable, and predictable – the perfect petri dish for urges to shake things up. Tired of the Los Angeles grind and craving an epic experience, a plan eventually hatched to spend two months traveling New Zealand in the tightest of quarters, a campervan. NZ’s open spaces, nourishing air, and unbounded beauty seemed like the perfect antidote to the hassles of L.A. and soon the necessary pieces were easily falling into place…until (duh duh duh) our longtime landlord refused to let us sublet.
Designed and Dimed – the big reveal.
The kind of tedious and time-crunched house hunt that can only happen in a big city ensued. Luckily, a rental just one mile outside of our desired neighborhood surfaced on Craigslist and, after receiving the above floor plan with an additional size warning (“feedback has been the bedrooms are too small to accommodate peoples’ furniture, if you’re still interested…” ), I did some quick calculations regarding our king bed and scheduled a viewing. Soon after, we were signing a new lease on a sunny back house with (literally) half the square footage at (almost) half the price. Two months later, I left my job and we were jumping a plane for what will probably always be the greatest travel adventure of our lives- but that is a post for another day.
Back to the business of introductions. The timing of this post happens to coincide with Apartment Therapy’s Small, Cool Contest, its annual hunt for stylish homes under 1000 sq.ft. When we returned from New Zealand, I submitted our own pint-sized place and, to my surprise, it was selected by editors to compete. We steadily climbed the ranks and, shockingly, ended up winning the division and going on to the finals, where we ultimately came in third. It was all pretty darn exciting and an affirming bonus to this new less-is-more lifestyle we’d adopted.
So it seems like the perfect jumping off point (for blogging purposes) to show the initial blank canvas photos contrasted with where things ended up by SmallCool2012. Then we can move forward on here talking about the projects and products, tips and tweaks, that has made living little possible.
THE LIVING ROOM:
LOOKING TOWARD THE KITCHEN:
THE BEDROOM (the smaller one on the floor plan):
THE OFFICE (larger ‘bedroom’ on the floor plan):
There have been many design rumblings, and a few tectonic shifts, over the last two years since these pictures (especially in this back room). Considering our previous 1000 sq.ft. house seemed pretty small at the time and now 550 sq.ft. is totally manageable, I find myself wondering what square footage qualifies as truly tiny. Our place probably seems like a mansion to some Manhattanites and practically a shed to many of my friends in the Midwest.
I’m curious, where is the ultimate boundary of itty bitty for you?