Small Home, Big Life: An Interview with Tiny r(E)volution

Small Home, Big Life An Interview with Tiny r(E)volution

One of the best things about blogging is connecting with amazing people I wouldn’t normally meet.

Andrew Odom, of Tiny r(E)volution is one of those people. We met (virtually) a couple of years ago, and can’t quite remember how, actually. One thing I do know, is that I’m so glad we met.

According to Andrew, he and his wife, Crystal, are just normal people with normal ideas. But sustainability and stewardship in the home and around the land is of the utmost importance to them. They live it. They write about it. And they always want to talk about it.

Which would explain why they, along with their adorable daughter, Tilly Madison, recently built and are now living in a (really) tiny house.

Inspired by Jay Shafer and the Tumbleweed Tiny Houses, they built their own home on a heavy-duty trailer that features sustainable building supplies and techniques, solar power, a modern kitchen (which I love) and their own sense of style.

Did I mention they did this for less than $12,000 by recycling, upcycling, repurposing, enlisting the help of family and friends, and doing the work themselves?

Andrew agreed to answer a few questions about the process of living in a tiny space and what he’s doing now that it’s all done.

1. Have you always been interested in living in a tiny house? If not, what prompted it?

No. I haven’t always been interested in living in a tiny house. In fact, growing up we did live in a tiny house. I just didn’t know it.

It was just over 900 sq.ft. and there were – at times – 6 of us. I have always been drawn to “a place for everything and everything in its place,” though, so I think to a large extent I have been wired for tiny living.

What prompted our decision was a severe need for priority change in 2007 and 2008 when my business suffered from the recession, my personal debts rose, and I had a desire to start a family with my wife.

Things just didn’t add up.

2. What were the 1st steps in the transition to smaller living?

The very first step was quite frankly learning the difference between need and want. Without that basic understanding you will revert to old habits every time.

3. What was the process like, waiting for your house to be done?

LOOOOOOOOOOONG. We had originally set a timeline and budget. Both were changed at least 6 times.

In fact, the house we live in now is the 7th iteration of our original plan.

We built outside so we had a number of weather delays that caused our calendar to be turned upside down. And because we built cash-on-the-barrel, there were many times we had to save money just to buy a few pieces of lumber.

It built patience for sure.

4. Can you give us a tour of your tiny house?

I can. Do you need my address to come over? HA! I am currently working on a video walkthrough. It should go live soon.

However, to give a teaser, we live in 240 sq.ft.

Tiny r(E)volution Interior

There are no interior walls, so it is an open floor concept with a maximum ceiling height of 10.4″. Our bed is situated in the back of the house just feet away from our 22-month old daughter’s bed.

We have a spacious common area and a spacious kitchen. In fact, we like to say we have the world’s first gourmet, tiny house kitchen.

Photos can be found on our Google+ page and our Facebook page.

5. Now that the house is done, what’s your next project? How can we help?

We are currently planning phase 2 of our building which is the ANNEX.

We designed our home to grow with the needs of our family so in the next year we will be adding another 8′ x 30′ tiny house trailer that will be the “master” bedroom, our daughter’s bedroom, and an indoor bathroom. It will be connected to our current area by a covered breezeway.

In the meantime, though, we are pleased to have recently launched The Advocate.

Conceived by the team at Tiny r(E)volution and led by me, Andrew Odom, The Advocate tiny house project was birthed during the course of three years in architecting and building our own tiny house.

During that adventure I realized that there is a greater desire from the general public to see what the modern tiny house movement is all about.

Together with sponsor companies, builders, and the outstanding tiny house community, we are planning to build a [length TBD by vote] foot, tandem axle, tiny house, to travel the Southeast region during 2014.

It will truly be “for the people, by the people…that you can live in!”

Unlike other projects, The Advocate will not be relying on an IndieGoGo campaign or some other slick crowd-sourced funding platform.

Instead, donations are being solicited in return for a vote.

Loosely based on the idea behind the DIY show, Blog Cabin, donors will get to vote on everything from trailer size to window placement to countertops. It is a team effort.

All donors will receive billing on the TEAM page on www.advocatetinyhouse.com.

Thanks, Andrew! I am so excited to see how The Advocate unfolds and can’t wait to see your tiny house in person … from our bus. ;)

Enrollment is now open for 2nd term of their Small Home. Big Life. e-Cours(E). I took the course last semester and learned a lot about building a tiny home (someday …). I highly recommend it! To read more about the course and register, visit the Tiny r(E)volution e-course page.

Are you intrigued by the Tiny House movement?

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