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BleakHausTruck: Box Truck Converted Into An Art & Recording Studio, Using 99% Recycled/Reclaimed Materials

Tena lives and works out of her BleakHausTruk, an art & recording studio constructed with hand tools & 99% recycled/repurposed materials found mostly for free on the street or in the trash in San Francisco!

She has about 100 square feet in her 14-foot-long 1997 Isuzu FRR 14 foot that she’s put more than 8,000 miles on traveling around America. The space is completely off-grid, with solar electricity, gravity fed sink & stainless steel bath tub, propane stove top & wood burning stove and compost toilet.

“. I never knew I could feel such peace in a roommateless creative space to call my own. Sadie, my sweet pit mix, was also found on the streets & was similarly suffering from PTSD, so we have been healing happily together,” Tena wrote us.

She spent $13,000 on the truck purchase,  conversion and engine maintenance since 2015. How amazing! Check out the photo tour of her bus below.

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Tena’s Housetruck and Recording Studio

BleakHausTruk 4

Images via Tena Lethe

When her house is closed, she has some cool graffiti on the back


Images via Tena Lethe

Here’s the view of the inside of the truck.

BleakHausTruk 9

Images via Tena Lethe

Here’s her kitchen and the stainless steel tub in the corner.

BleakHausTruk 12

Images via Tena Lethe

Here’s her art desk area.

BleakHausTruk 6

Images via Tena Lethe

Here’s her sound and recording equipment

BleakHausTruk 5

Images via Tena Lethe

She has some really cool lighting in here! And a skylight.

BleakHausTruk 3

Images via Tena Lethe

Love the stained glass on this skylight.

BleakHausTruk 8

Images via Tena Lethe

This skylight has a cool twig wreath around it.

BleakHausTruk 7

Images via Tena Lethe

A very organized towel set-up!

BleakHausTruk 14

Images via Tena Lethe

Here’s her tiny kitchen with gravity-fed sink.

BleakHausTruk 15

Images via Tena Lethe

Her red piano is awesome!

BleakHausTruk 16

Images via Tena Lethe

She’s made this a happy home for herself since 2015.

BleakHausTruk 17

Images via Tena Lethe

The trunk under the piano is awesome, too.

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Images via Tena Lethe

Such clever clothing storage!

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Images via Tena Lethe

So many cute details here.

BleakHausTruk 14

Images via Tena Lethe

Love the look behind the garage door.

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Images via Tena Lethe

Little window boxes make this place look like home.

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Images via Tena Lethe

House at night.

BleakHausTruk 1

Images via Tena Lethe


  • Solid state PA system
  • Acoustic panel
  • Skylights
  • Internal solar lighting
  • A loft bed
  • Several electronic music gadgets & effects pedals
  • A cello
  • An oboe & a bright red upright piano
  • Small garden boxes outside
  • Cuckoo clock doorbell
  • Lots of extra storage both inside & out
  • Off-grid
  • Gravity-fed sink
  • Stainless steel tub
  • Solar powered

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Our big thanks to Tena for sharing! 🙏

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Natalie C. McKee

Natalie C. McKee is a contributor for Tiny House Talk and the Tiny House Newsletter. She's a wife, and mama of three little kids. She and her family are homesteaders with sheep, goats, chickens, ducks and quail on their happy little acre.

Latest posts by Natalie C. McKee (see all)

{ 11 comments… add one }
  • Joanna Huskey
    October 3, 2020, 6:59 am

    Very creative, love it.

  • Sheila
    October 3, 2020, 3:58 pm

    My career was music. Been in many Recording Studio’s. This is very nice. Creative.

  • John Osborne
    October 4, 2020, 12:08 am

    Such an amazing small and huge space for expansive thought and unfettered creativity. If you ever come to London, Ontario Canada I would love to host some events or no events whichever comes first.

    • October 5, 2020, 12:18 pm

      Funny you should mention that John cuz i was just thinking about doing another north-east-south-west circle thru Canada this time! Keep in touch🤘😇🤘

    • Danielle DiLisio
      April 3, 2022, 6:08 pm

      I think it’s great! She has the best of both worlds. I might have missed it, but wondering where she sleeps?

  • thomas cirillo
    October 4, 2020, 8:55 am

    very inspirational !! wow, what a creative mind can accomplish is most wonderful !! i tried to listen to your music but got stuck at the site (not really smart about computers & sites & stuff like that ),but i play my keyboards & drums & kalimba & dream about people like me that bravely struck out on there own !!kudos to you tena you rock the house p.s. make it easier to get to your music id buy an album just on principle your new fan thomas cirillo a new york \ player

  • Theresa Perdue
    October 5, 2020, 9:23 am

    Very industrious. There’s so many wonderful things to look at I will probably be going back and forth through the pictures for a while. The only thing I question is where does she sleep?

    • October 5, 2020, 12:07 pm

      The loft bed is against the wall opposite the piano. Hard to see it from the door but i made it that way for extra privacy so that no one can see me unless i poke my head out. 😹

  • October 5, 2020, 12:27 pm

    P.S. it’s all about turning the totally devastating catastrophy of losing everything into an opportunity to explore your newfound liberation. It does take time though….usually about 3x longer than you initially think it’s going to take, but it is completely worth it. And when you reach the scary jumping off point and are pooping bricks in yer britches, it helps to remind yourself that “courage is not the absence of fear but the willingness to stand up and face it.” You got this. Especially for survivors of c-ptsd + any form of abuse = you’ve already made it through way worse things in life. All you have to do is learn how to trust yourself & the universe at large then grab the steering wheel of your most authentic you. 🖤

  • Patricia Kafton
    February 22, 2022, 7:29 pm

    ONE wonderful AMAZINGLY talented lady! I have trouble tuning in a clear playing RADIO STATION. FORGET making the music or singing!

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