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Tiny House as Smart & Affordable Student Housing

Tengbom architects designed and built this smart student flat.

It’s a tiny cabin designed to house students affordably. And it’s environmentally friendly too.

The 107 sq. ft. design features a:

  • kitchen,
  • table,
  • desk,
  • sleeping loft,
  • and a private bathroom.

Most of the storage is in the form of built-in shelving throughout the cabin.

Tengbom architects student tiny house

Photos by Bertil Hertzberg

I encourage you to enjoy the rest of the article and tour below:

View of Kitchen with Shelving and Dining Table

Tengbom architects student tiny house

Do you like it or do you think it’s too much wood? I think it’s nice but yeah, it might be too much of one thing.

Also be sure to notice how the table flips up into the window when you’re not using it. I think that’s pretty awesome.

Tengbom architects student tiny house

I’m not sure how the appliances and all of that work but everything blends in seamlessly, doesn’t it?

View of Sleeping Loft in the Tiny House & the Desk

Tengbom architects student tiny house

Notice how parts of the ladder/staircase double as shelving/storage.

Up in the sleeping loft, you can see that there’s plenty of storage shelves to put away your clothes, etc.

And finally, the bathroom is right through the door across from the desk.

View Looking Down from the Sleeping Loft

Tengbom architects student tiny house

Photos by Bertil Hertzberg

Tengbom architects worked with Martisons and AF bostäder to create the Smart Student Unit.

So What’s Next for the Smart Student Unit Tiny House?

A model will be on display at the Virserum Art Museum until December 8, 2013.

And in 2014, 22 units will be available for students to rent and live in.

More Info

Read the original article and see the blueprint drawings at Design Boom. More information is also available on it here.

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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!
{ 30 comments… add one }
  • Shirley Ross
    September 11, 2013, 5:55 pm

    Absolutely adorable. Can’t have too much wood for me especially in excellent taste as this tiny student cabin.

    • Paul
      March 20, 2014, 6:52 am

      Sorry, I disagree… totally mega fugly!

  • Shiley Ross
    September 11, 2013, 5:58 pm

    Gorgeous tiny house! Can I buy the plans?

  • Cahow
    September 11, 2013, 6:18 pm

    How’s that phrase go…”Everything OLD is NEW, again?”

    Seeing this Swedish designed pod made me smile. SOMEONE young must have gotten hold of their Hippie Parent’s 1960’s-1970’s Interior Design books. And yes, I was and am a hippie, still, and have those books from my youth. LOL The design is SO retro and evocative of the Scandinavian design-Marimekko school of organic architecture and product design from those decades. They were really into stained woods, using white plastic in interesting shapes for folding panels and hanging light fixtures; Crate & Barrel sold a ton of this stuff when it first opened, back in 1962 and through the early 80’s.

    As to the amount of wood that Alex pointed out: hey, I’ve seen more tiny houses that have an obsession with wood surfaces than you can shake a stick at! I can’t stand those homes because the wood is usually a darker tone; the white-wash finish to the wood on this unit is much lighter and brighter.

    At the official website, there’s not many fans of this pod, which is sad. Most are knocking the organically shaped windows and doors, and the amount of displayed wood. The ONLY problem that I have (as a builder) is the outrageously under-sized stairs that go up to the loft…just HOW small in stature and weight do you have to be to safely reach that loft? No hand-railing or anything to grab onto if you misstep and nothing to break your fall except furniture! Oooops!

    I guess I like this structure so much because it reminds me of my happy youth and how innovative the designs were back then. 😀

    • Alex
      September 12, 2013, 8:13 am

      I agree on the loft.. Definitely could use some hand rails to make safer/easier to get up and down from there. And about the wood, yeah, I think I take it back. I’d probably love being in there. I also liked Paul’s idea of installing built in speakers with Bluetooth for music listening 🙂

  • TomLeeM
    September 11, 2013, 9:53 pm

    I think that is really nice. I like light the interior is. I like how open it is.

    • Alex
      September 12, 2013, 8:09 am

      Glad you liked it Tom 😀

  • Frank
    September 13, 2013, 10:22 am

    Somebody got their money’s worth out of their router on this job! Very nice!

  • Denise
    September 15, 2013, 1:10 pm

    I LOVE this and think it is a great idea for students! It is a lot of wood, but it will tone down once someone loads it with books and stuff. Sure beats the dorm rooms I have seen!

  • di
    September 15, 2013, 4:25 pm

    Those images remind me of the fact that a hammock would be very appropriate for a small space.

  • di
    September 15, 2013, 4:30 pm

    And the loft is the same shape as the kitchen table – more narrow at one end?

  • Julie K.
    September 16, 2013, 6:28 am

    Very cute! Oh, and the hammock – I haven´t sit in one of those for ages! Have to get one for my garden:) There´s a lot of wood, for sure, but given the fact that it´s so light and combined with that fresh green color, I think it´s ok. Not too overwhelming. Maybe I would bring more color to the interior to make it less homogeneous. I think it would help to draw the focus away from all the wood a bit.

  • Dominick Bundy
    September 25, 2013, 10:12 am

    I like the concept and layout of it. But would prefer a more traditional house type look. Rather than the it came from another planet design..

  • Carol
    October 1, 2013, 11:21 pm

    Cute, but what a bummer to have to wear only lime green clothes.

  • Cheryl
    May 23, 2014, 5:21 pm

    Love the light wood and green, but my big concern is wind/storms. I live in Texas and this would end up in another state if it wasn’t really anchored down. If they were some how connected, without losing light, it might help. Just my thought!

  • DFallis
    June 12, 2014, 11:17 am

    It’s perfect for a student. I can see using the Nuwave appliances in this one. They’re a lot more energy efficient, self-contained, and they don’t create heat. If we ever get all our demo-ing done and start to rebuild, we will make circular holes for our Nuwave cooktops. I actually use ours in our house because it’s way-cheaper on the electric and doesn’t create the heat of a regular stove.

  • Marsha Cowan
    July 30, 2014, 8:10 pm

    I think it is really ingenious and if it was filled with actual personal belongings, and not just a few green things, you would not see so much wood and it would be rather cool! It looks so easy to clean and easy to maneuver in the spaces. I like it!

    • Alex
      October 7, 2014, 2:45 pm

      Good point Marsha!

  • Princess Mom
    July 30, 2014, 9:43 pm

    I like the organic shapes in the windows, but the fact that the table flips up into the window is a non-starter for me. What if I need the floor space but want to see out the window? What if I’m working at the table at night and want privacy?

  • Cosy
    July 30, 2014, 10:00 pm

    I love this. What a great idea for students to have their own little place. When I was in college, the dorms had cinder lock was & a community bathroom, then later in order to afford off-campus living, we would rent an old house & have 4 roommates. What a great to have your own little space. The stairs at their age is probably not even an issue. At that age, you fall, you get up & keep going with maybe a bruise or two. Oh & I’m loving the lime green & light wood. By the time the renter has put her/his stuff in you won’t notice either. I say this as my daughter & friends are making things for her dorm room as I type this. And I won’t show her this because she will want to transfer so she can live in one of these.

    • Alex
      October 7, 2014, 2:47 pm

      Thanks Cosy. Great points! I’d love this as a student instead of a dorm for sure. Probably wouldn’t want to move out after graduation either.

  • Comet
    July 30, 2014, 11:05 pm


    Let me ask—do you ALWAYS dress to —match—your–HOUSE???

    I would have to wear a whole lot of different colors and patterns to “match” MY house!

  • Lindy
    August 16, 2014, 1:09 am

    I would love to see a loft that could lower on a pulley down to the desk level so you could just get into bed. And yes I think a ladder would be easier than those stairs! Otherwise, seems like a great student room!

    • Alex
      October 7, 2014, 2:46 pm

      Thanks Lindy! Wow, cool, never thought of that idea before!

  • Dee
    October 7, 2014, 2:03 pm

    Love the light/bright interior. This could be adapted to the needs of low income seniors if the back were extended a few feet and the loft eliminated. I could see a small Murphy-bed over sofa against that back wall, instead of desk area (or put a bed on an electric pulley system to raise/lower, as LINDY suggested). Glass-front cabinets over counter would make better use of kitchen space, plus a DEEP kitchen sink and an upright refrigerator. If table was a bit longer and narrower, 2 chairs could slide under it, perhaps blinds or a curtain on window for occasional privacy. Maybe fit a small stacked washer/dryer in bathroom. I’ll bet a senior village of these would be a delightful eyeful.

    • Alex
      October 7, 2014, 2:45 pm

      Great ideas here Dee, thank you!

  • Marsha Cowan
    October 7, 2014, 3:04 pm

    I like it! I think the table closes up more for protection at night than to be out of the way, I mean, the table is the hub of the living space and the work place, so it would probably stay out most of the time. I love wood, but I think I would grow tired of the light tone after a while. It gives a temporary or office sort of feel whereas darker hewes feel more permanent and homey, like a cottage. I miss the trim, too, as I am a bit old fashioned, but as contemporary goes, this house is adorable.

  • veronica
    October 7, 2014, 8:24 pm

    Love the concept but it looks unfinished. A ladder up to the loft would allow more room for storage. Lime green is not my favorite but that is an easy fix.
    How is it heated? Does it come with water and electric hook ups. A group of these could share communal bathrooms and laundry facilities. As some one else said a loveseat would be a better choice than the hamock and could double as a pull out bed. Needs to be used for a while to work out the best features

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