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Video: The ‘Willy Wonka’ of Reclaimed Tiny Housing

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Right now I’m thrilled to share this free documentary on the ‘Willy Wonka’ of reclaimed tiny housing thanks to Faircompanies.

This movie is on Brad Kittel of Tiny Texas Houses. When he came to Texas 30 years ago, he was living in a school bus converted into a home.

And he started buying boarded-up houses and fixing them up using repurposed materials salvaged from barns, old houses, and other buildings.

Today all of his toxic-free, all organic, little homes are built using 99% recycled materials. Please watch, enjoy, talk about it in the comments, and re-share below.

Tiny Texas Houses: The ‘Willy Wonka’ of Salvaged Tiny Homes


Image © Faircompanies

Video: Brad Kittel and his 99% Salvaged Tiny Texas Houses

Learn more: Tiny Texas Houses

Credit: Faircompanies.com

If you enjoyed this free tiny house documentary on the ‘Willy Wonka’ of salvaged tiny homes you’ll LOVE our free daily tiny house newsletter with even more! Thank you!

This post contains affiliate links.

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Alex is a contributor and editor for TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too. Thank you!
{ 31 comments… add one }
  • Aldene
    October 3, 2014, 1:09 pm

    Lots of amazing ideas; I’d want to slap a good coat of paint on these, inside and out. Some elegance here, but diamonds in the rough.

    • Alex
      October 3, 2014, 3:26 pm

      Thanks Aldene!

    • 2BarA
      October 3, 2014, 3:47 pm

      Aldene, I totally agree with you. Either strip down to bare wood, or paint, and either way, everything would be beautiful. There are many good ideas here–more than one person could implement in a lifetime. Brad is taking an important step and I hope he will have many followers.

    • fafa
      November 23, 2014, 11:39 pm

      He wants to paint it but the only brand he will accept is very expensive and not important enough to his budget.

    • Nani
      September 16, 2015, 9:49 am

      Some of us like the chippy, distressed look. Besides, if all those wonderful old boards were painted, how could they tell the same story? thingswithcharacter are hard to come by.

  • Luis A. Contreras
    October 3, 2014, 2:21 pm

    What about Extremely MAN?

    • Alex
      October 3, 2014, 3:26 pm

      He’s awesome.

      • mountaingypsy
        January 1, 2015, 9:04 pm

        Alex, Saw this guy on TV lately. I love the use of salvaged wood and materials. Store bought is not creative or repurposed! There are several interesting TV shows, using salvage stuff, that may give people here ideas for their tiny or small home. I hope there are regular tiny home builders that will work with clients that want salvage stuff, or less new wood? TX is farther than most of us can travel. We need a hope of tiny homes LESS expensive to build. (options) I notice that is a problem with a lot of commenters, and takes away our dream! Most tinies are gorgeous, but are asininely expensive McMansions on wheels!! thanks! 🙂

  • Janet
    October 3, 2014, 11:54 pm

    That was a very interesting video.
    Quite amazing. I really enjoyed listening to and learning
    from everything he told. Thank you for sharing all this info.

  • Boudicca
    October 5, 2014, 9:08 pm

    I have actually watched this man’s video on youtube. I also receive emails from livingvintage.com. Both of these individuals use “reclaimed wood” in their projects. The most immediate concern that came to mind was the reclaimed wood was coming from homes built back in the late 1800s and in the 1900s when lead paint was in use. I am not sure just how good an investment of time and $$ it is to buy this kind of wood.

    • Terry
      September 28, 2015, 4:41 pm

      He goes to great pains to insure that the existing paint has no lead in it. I have been following him for a couple of years now and let me say that he is an invigorating person, to say the least, and a walking wealth of information. He has a million ideas that he will unfortunately not be able to put into motion in his lifetime but it may spur many others to do so.

  • Denise
    October 6, 2014, 1:15 am

    Wowser’s, so much inspiration here! Each house he makes is an original, in two ways. Each one holds visual interest along with being practical. The man has visual interest also when one looks at his arms, ha ha!

  • Rob Power
    October 8, 2014, 5:09 am

    This guy is a legend and a true inspiration, may you continue for many more years sir.

  • Glema
    November 1, 2014, 4:56 pm

    Sand it and glaze it all. Leave the differing colors from wear, it’s interestingly beautiful that way. Just my opinion of course. God bless and happy trails!

    • mountaingypsy
      January 1, 2015, 8:54 pm

      Glema, I saw this guy on a TV show, love his creations. I love the idea of salvage, old wood and repurpose, creative rather than store bought. There are too many land fill dumps, for a throw away society. I had a antique/junk/collectible place, and had a lot of salvage stuff, that we sold. Loved it. ( Salvage Dawgs, and several TV shows use only old salvage for decor) This guy and some others only use salvage for tiny homes. I like the old look, unpainted (shabby chic, old term), and with character. Too much is too much, like wood cabins on all 4 walls, floor (IMO). I like a blend of old/new/modern/shiny….etc. in décor. Several people glaze or seal the old painted stuff, to prevent chipping, lead, and to preserve the look. 🙂

  • Russell
    December 16, 2014, 12:41 am

    Hi Brad Kittle, you are my father of scrapping for small houses. Please contact me of things you know for scrapping of my own small house on wheels. I would like to meet you in person but I am homeless trying to get my life together. I live in Calif. Please contact me at [email protected] or (805)861-6647 Thank You So Much For Reading My EMAIL PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE

  • January 3, 2015, 5:45 pm

    I adore this man! I even want to name my tiny house Temple Tantra!!!! Cant wait to someday visit him and have him look over my tiny place 🙂

  • William Crockett
    January 9, 2015, 12:19 pm

    This is genius and fantastic with so much common sense. Sending you all the positive energy you obviously already possess. Namaste, William

  • Kristen C
    January 26, 2015, 2:14 pm

    This guy is amazing! I live in Ontario Canada and I wish we had something like this village. The canadian government would never allow it, well as far as i know. I will be starting my tiny house on wheels soon its the only way to live in a tiny house in Canada without buying land and going through hell getting approval to build. I can’t wait to start building it.

  • Susanne
    March 1, 2015, 7:00 pm

    I did not watch the entire video-notice how he mentioned the house would cost 30-40,000 because of tearing the old structures down? That is what I was afraid of-recycling materials costing more, not less. I’d rather have the modern looking, better floor plans, and more footage of the tiny houses we typically see. I do not want those older materials if they cost more; could not afford it…
    Anyone agree with me?

  • Max
    July 4, 2015, 6:57 pm

    sure wish I could access the video controls on this website. Can’t fast forward, rewind or watch in high speed. I was a lot of youtube videos in 2x speed. I’m too impatient and annoyed when I can’t rewind something.

  • Olivia
    September 14, 2015, 2:17 pm

    I was wondering when you’d mention Brad Kittel. He makes houses that are like sculptures, with an incredible sensitivity for materials, and patinas. The shapes resolve from different angles and the spaces feel right. I don’t know how practical they’d be up north as they are not insulated, but they are quirkily beautiful. Kind of like outsider art for the housing set. Even the more conventional among us TH people can appreciate that. I think if we could combine the salvaging genius of Deek Diedricksen and the vision of Brad Kittel and the balanced pragmatism of Jay Shaffer we could get somewhere really cool.

    • Marsha Cowan
      February 24, 2018, 8:52 pm

      You just mentioned my three Tiny House Heros!

  • Valerie Pruett
    September 14, 2015, 4:43 pm

    Unfortunately, he is done building tiny houses. He is currently trying to raise money for a book on his methods, to be free to whoever needs it. Look him up on Kickstarter. He also wants to build a tiny village, with one or each of his house designs.

  • Kathy P
    September 14, 2015, 5:50 pm

    I have watch a few of his videos and I am very interested in his style, knowledge, and visions. Very Smart Indeed. Im interested in a small home as well.

  • Kat
    September 16, 2015, 4:06 pm

    I like Brad’s outlook. He makes sense of all the underused resources and creates such sweet buildings. While I like rustic, his designs are a little too much for me; but, I respect that our likes are different.
    I am curious who is buying his creations.

  • Jenni
    November 6, 2016, 4:00 pm

    Where is Brad’s ranch? We are in TX and attempting to do something similar, building a tiny home community. We would love to go visit.

    • Natalie
      November 7, 2016, 9:17 am

      Hi Jenni — I think you could contact him through their building website and ask. I don’t know myself! — Tiny House Talk Team

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