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Simple Living in a Tiny Cabin on an Island

Have you ever dreamed of simple living in a tiny cabin?

If you prefer tiny houses on foundations instead of on trailers I think you’ll enjoy this.

From the outside it looks like it might just be a shed. But it’s a little more than just that.

The only thing it’s missing is an indoor bathroom. So I imagine there’s an outhouse nearby.


I encourage you to see more- including the video tour- below:

Foundation Tiny Cabin Interior


To me this is like a modern day Thoreau cabin. Extreme simplicity? Maybe. But why is it so appealing?


Wood Burning Stove


Video Tour

More info and photos available here.

What does your tiny dream house look like? Is it on a foundation or on a trailer? How tiny is it? What’s unique about it?

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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!
{ 17 comments… add one }
  • Cahow
    August 3, 2013, 1:23 pm

    Bwhahahahaaa. Love how when he pans the camera and says, “Well, here’s a look at the walls,” he literally means a.look.at.the.walls., and nuttin’ BUT da walls! LOL

    Wish he would have taken slightly less time focused on the pronounciation of his African Pot and more on the What For’s of this charmer. From the set up, I’m guessing it’s simply a retreat from the main home that guests can stay at. This is based on a photo tripod and a feeding station directly sited outside the window. He probably is really into photography and birding (A++ on that score) and comes here to shoot, sip tea and chill; not a bad combination.

    If this was my creation, the only thing that I’d do fifferently, would be to make ‘floor to ceiling’ windows with crank-out casements at the top, rather then the standard windows currently in place. Then, I’d plant a Butterfly/Hummingbird garden directly outside those windows with the feeding station amidst the posies. It would make for amazing viewing while sitting/lying down on that comfy looking futon and also make the wee space less claustrophic for those of us that suffer from feeling trapped in small spaces. Perhaps a couple of octagonal windows or nice stained glass windows added to the top of the peaked walls on both sides would complete a more airy look, which I need.

    I’d be interested to find out if ANYONE who uses solar panels knows if they create enough power for radiant heated floors? We installed them at the cottage and it makes a VAST difference in being comfortable and heating bills, since the furniture/rugs soak up all that nice warm heat. An unnecessary expense, to be sure, for a part time house but a nice one if you planned on months/years of occupancy.

    All in all, cute-sweet-cozy. Good job, Mate! Oh, and I’ve never worn a watch, either! Carry my Granpa’s pocket watch that he got from working on the railroad before he turned to dairy farming. (Love you, Granpa!)

    • jerryd
      August 3, 2013, 2:53 pm

      What it really needs is a wall of shelves 1′ deep on the couch side maybe with table, etc folding out of it.

      As it is now just the tiny amount of things there fill it up. Where are you going to put the things you really need to live?

      • Cahow
        August 3, 2013, 3:00 pm

        jerryd: he may not LIVE here, it may be just for fun. I tried on two different browsers to access his blog but the pages refused to load. I don’t know what the chap has downloaded on his site, but after Safari and I.E. refused to budge, I gave up.

        I agree, however, that if this is a permanent dwelling, at least ONE shelf (hey, for birding books at least!) would be nice. But, on youtube I’ve seen some exceptionally spartan dwellings so who knows? As long as they don’t force me to get rid of my Gran’s creamer/sugar bowl collection, I won’t bug them about lack of possessions. ~wink~

    • August 3, 2013, 5:09 pm

      Cahow, if you are asking about PV panels, you would need a huge number of them to produce enough electric power for space heating, plus a very large battery bank to save the power for nighttime use. It is much more feasible to use a solar water heater and store it in an insulated tank, then have a small electric pump circulate the hot water through your floors. Back to PV, you can use it for a low-power sleeping pad to keep you warm at night….the kind you lie on top of, not an electric blanket.

      • Cahow
        August 3, 2013, 6:21 pm

        Thank YOU, Mili. I appreciate your knowledge in an area I’m lacking.

      • jerryd
        August 3, 2013, 11:18 pm

        Milli, nice point about the E blankets/pads.

        I’m building them into both my bed and seating all run on 12vdc. They can be found at trucker, RV supply at about $30 IIRC though I’ll be using mine on my sailboat.

        Having heat come up from under you and a blanket on top will keep you toasty on little electricity.

        They use about 5 amps and likely have weak controllers so I’ll make a 12vdc variable power supply and just adjust the voltage for heat adjustment.

        Another is take 120vac e blankets and rewire their heating wires to get the most from 12vdc. It’ll only put out 20-30% of what was from 120vac but with it under you that should be enough. You could just hook 12dc straight and it might be enough.

        Anyone with E knowledge can help do these mods if needed.

        • August 4, 2013, 2:00 am

          5amps at 12V is 60 watts. An electric throw with 60 watts of heat won’t keep the chill off a warm cup of tea. All you would achieve overnight is depleting 600 watts of stored power from your deep cycle batteries. Better to spend the money used to solar generate that energy and install extra insulation allowing the tiny home to stay warmer.
          Solar cells and battery storage for heat generation are a loosing battle even on a small scale heating blanket.

        • Jerryd
          August 4, 2013, 11:11 am

          Hi Robert and All,

          Thanks for telling me that as I’ve spend the last 15 yrs doing just that and all the time I though I was toasty when apparently you say I was actually freezing ;^P

          How could I have been so wrong!!

          Seriously I had to put a voltage control to cut the power to around 2 amps so not to overheat when it is under you.

          If you are not put on another top blanket. I use almost no heat in winter keeping things at 50 night-60F day and just E blankets, sheet on top when really cold around 30f outside and stay quite warm.

          My e bill runs $30 average.

          So I suggest you put a 60 watt set e blanket under you and let use and let us know what happens. You’ll be surprised I bet.

        • Cahow
          August 4, 2013, 11:55 am

          Oh, JerryD…thanks for the free laugh, this morning! 😀 I chuckled all through your response and had to add my own .02 cents.

          I guess if an original Easy Bake Oven could BAKE cakes and cookies using JUST 2-light bulbs, Jerry can heat his place on a light bulb’s worth of energy. LOL

        • alice h
          August 4, 2013, 8:54 pm

          Watch out for condensation if you have a heated bed in a less heated space. As long as you have air circulation underneath the bed it should be OK but I used to run into a lot of problems in my Boler trailer with the mattress sitting directly on a fibreglass base. I replaced that with a wooden slat open front platform and it fixed it. Just body heat alone in a fairly cool trailer overnight caused a lot of moisture buildup.

        • jerryd
          August 4, 2013, 9:44 pm

          Hi Alice, I’ve lived aboard for yrs earlier in life and the only condensation we get in Fla and likely most places that don’t burn fuel inside, comes from one’s breath.

          Others are cooking, stove flames, oil lamp which many boaters use as a heater in Fla. Because the water is usually fairly warm, over 60F even in winter, it takes a real cold night to ever get any condensation. Mostly around the alum window frames first but as temp drops the FG hull starts getting wet.

          Only thing to do is dress warm and open up and let the moisture out. Permanent ventilation isn’t a bad idea especially in wood boats, homes.

          Another is calcium carbonate in air flowing bags over the sink. The moisture condenses on it and drips down the drain. Great for longer term storage, for trailers, homes too to keep dampness out. Damp Rid from stores is the same thing.

  • alice h
    August 5, 2013, 12:00 pm

    I do live in the (usually) damp Pacific NW but it’s specifically the condensation under a mattress set on a cooler surface without air circulation that was a problem, not general condensation. There are solutions available in marine catalogs so it must be a fairly common issue. Also mentioned on some RV forums. I already use calcium chloride, that’s great stuff. I don’t have a sink but use the self-contained drip catcher type. The dollar store also had some little tiny ones that would be useless anywhere else but are perfect in the pantry.

    I’m only able to get over here a couple of times a month right now so the place is unheated most of the time. I got rid of the cotton items in the place, that stuff is like a sponge. Microfleece sheets are great, they always feel dry and those plastic bags you roll or vacuum the air out of are fantastic at keeping clothing dry. Books are all bagged in plastic too so they don’t get all wobbly paged. I save all those little dehydrator packets from pill bottles to tuck in there with the books. My friends all know I can use them and save them for me too. At least I don’t have to worry about stuff freezing.

  • Duke
    July 14, 2014, 6:09 pm

    I suggest that some regulars on this forum who seem to think they know pretty well everything there is to know, allow themselves some time in order to listen to the input of those who use common sense while applying their knowledge in specific areas in regard to the practical use of electricity for heating purposes and controlling the nuisance of humidity and condensation in smaller spaces and in different climates.

  • Alberto
    July 14, 2014, 10:57 pm


    In a place that small, maybe this could be considered.

  • Comet
    July 14, 2014, 11:29 pm

    That is cute but a bit—Spartan!

    The stove flue is a bit too close to the firebox for me—having used wood to heat with exclusively for 20+ years this would tend to build up too much creosote on the pipe by making the pipe cooler than it should be at that height/ relative to the body of the stove. Maybe this is some different kind of damper that I am not familiar with.

    Nice little retreat/guest cottage tho!

  • Glema
    July 15, 2014, 8:12 pm

    Might place the avanti kitchen where the table is and a small corner round glass table in the corner by the window. Get a couple folding wooden chairs for dinner for two. Hang them on the ceiling or upper wall when not in use? A sawdust compost toilet next to the couch. and solar shower set up with a galvanized tub when you want a shower. Or use the tub when you want a bath, simple hooks from the ceiling, bent wire clothes hangers and a hula hoop will hold your shower curtain. 🙂 Just some suggestions. Very cute, so far. 🙂 God bless.

  • Glema
    July 15, 2014, 8:18 pm

    Of course you would need a bit of solar to run the kitchenette. or use your creativity and make some small changes. 🙂

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