Thursday, June 21, 2012


When you think of Italy, you might think of large places like the Roman Colosseum, the leaning tower of Pisa, and San Marco Plaza in Venice. But for the past month, as I spent time with the people of Italy traveling from Rome north through Tuscany and on to the French border near Bobbio Pellice, I was reminded again how small space is in Italy. The farms are small, most homes are small, some apartments are downright tiny, and of course most cars are small because the parking places are always too small and far between.

In the middle of my trip, near Florence, we visited some friends who live in the most tiny homes. They are part of a mobile ministry, using about 85 "containers" for living quarters, offices, the kitchen, laundry, and even showers and restrooms. They're used to tiny spaces and being efficient in every way. (Amazing the delicious meals we enjoyed around huge outdoor tables!)
One of the team members, a Crocodile Dundee look-alike from France, made a great impression on me with a tiny house he built from trash. Dominic collected wood scraps from wood pallets and discarded windows to build an amazingly creative and beautiful cabin.  The most impressive part of his story is that he not only built once, but that he disassembles and rebuilds it every time the team moves to a different city. (The other container "homes" are transported by truck intact.)
The front of the cabin.

The cabin is heated with wood via this nice heat/cook stove.



 Handmade furniture throughout. Notice the use of bark-on logs for the legs of the bed.
 The cabin includes cubbies for artsy but useful objects.



 Off-the-grid lighting.


 The terrace with handmade dining furniture





The water supply.

I love the three little windows set high in the back side of the cabin.

Amazing use of boards that are too short and too small to create a sufficient structural support.

4 comments:

Ruca said...

Very cool little abode. Thanks for sharing it!

Anthrostudent said...

What is the make of that cute little heating/cook stove?

Unknown said...

Probably the nicest pallet building I've seen (and I've been looking all morning).
Some great details. Thanks for sharing!

burghgrl said...

TRUE resourcefulness and ingenuity...a most rare combination these days especially. Congratulations on such spirit!!