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Lauren O'Mally Living Tiny Home

Posted on July 1, 2014 at 7:55 AM


This contest was a no brainer as far as which category I was going to choose. I have been planning/researching tiny house idea plans for a while and a design contest was just what I needed to get it going. As far as design, I wanted to do something that was different in terms of a small house layout. I wanted to maximize every ounce of 160 sq feet of living space as I could as well as create multifunctional rooms for living. The structure has a flat roof taking advantage of maximum road height requirements of 10' 6", and it also has a custom made low boy trailer letting occupants gain extra inches in head space.

The first thing I did before I deciding on a design was browse the endless amounts of Pins and photos online, and found inspiration in some of the micro sized apartments you see in New York and overseas. What striked me as the most important elements of good (small) design were: Multifunctional spaces. use of both under and overhead space, and transforming furniture. Since this home would also be designed for myself and my son (as well as family and friends visiting) I wanted this space to feel bright, open and spacious. I also wanted more storage space for clothing, shoes, etc, so I made sure to utilize every ounce of space imaginable. People who don't want to climb ladders but want additional living space for loved ones will appreciate the converting queen sized bed. In addition to spacial needs, the home is very multfunctional, as evidenced in the way of a pull out wardrobe which also serves as a room divider, and first floor couch that transforms into a queen sized bed at night, a closet that also serves as an office and dressing room, and a roof that becomes a mini yard, compete with a low growing garden. Outside walls create a space for a vertical garden which is perfect for growing vining vegetation, and indoors were left for growing herbs. Since the plant life didnt stop at the outdoors, the space is flooded with light from windows reaching almost every inch of the space inside. The home is also animal friendly in that it features a cat observation deck at the rear of the structure which is contained underneath the kitchen appliances, accessible by feline entry through a cat door, and accessible by human entry from the outside. In a space so small, this was necessary in maintaining a fresh home. Litter cleaning duties are kept outdoors which is also a great advantage. Since this contest also required the use of off-grid/low-cost/sustainable living, I incorporated many important features including solar power which is attained by a solar panel on the roof, a solar hot water heater, a rain water collection system, a living roof which vegetates low lying vegetables with vining vegetation of the outside kitchen wall, and more.


Categories: 2014 Contest Submissions

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Reply Knot-Kupid
11:39 AM on July 26, 2014 
Thanks for your reply and your blog link, I checked out the rest of your images and love the whole concept. You have a good eye for texture, detail and color palettes. Great use of transformative furniture in your design and the multifunctional spaces in your tiny home. I'll check back on your blog every now and then to see your updates and hopefully the finished pixs of your new home. Here's to a better tomorrow and more freedom for you and yours.
Reply Lauren O'Malley
8:15 PM on July 18, 2014 

Hello and thanks for the positive feedback! The pull out wardrobe is in between the wet bath and entertainment unit. It's built on casters so that it can slide out from under the entertainment area without actually moving the unit itself. Sort of the samething for the bed/sofa which is comprised of a unit which the mattress fits on top of, and a pull out storage unit that's built onto casters as well so that the whole thing doesnt have to be pulled out (which is great when you don't want to bother someone who is watching tv or napping). Fortunatley the climbing greenery is safe for exterior walls and pretty as well. The soil is kept in a container near the bottom and the greenery is woven through chicken wire so nothing actually grows onto the siding itself. As for the rooftop deck, it is comprised of lightweight, waterproof material that includes a vapor control layer, waterproof membrane, protection mat drainage layer w(hich sends any excess water to a gutter.rain collection system), and the soil and grass. It's protected the same way a regular roof is protected with the addition of extra waterproofing and a drainage system (although most of the soil and grass absorbs the liquid anyhow) You can find the full post and tons more photos of the design on my blog here:
and follow my design process as well! (We will hopefully begin building in the Fall) :)
Reply Knot-Kupid
12:27 PM on July 15, 2014 
Love the design, a bit off the average fair. Though, I'm not sure exactly where the pullout wardrobe is that divides the room unless its the rectangular unit in front of the euro style, wet-bath. I'm also assuming the queen bed is the couch after pulling the rest of it out from under the kitchen floor space. Good call on the cat business being handled outside, love cats but the lingering scent leaves a need for incense, etc. in small spaces, even those that live big. Lol
Although, I very much like the addition of climbing greenery to the end walls (solar shading?) I'm not sure how those tenacious tendrils will effect the wall cladding. Love the use of the roof for solar lounging but how will you insure a leak-proof topper as I'm assuming, of course, that the green shown isn't AstroTurf? ;) Over all a very nice design Ms. O'Malley, I could honestly live in it myself with just a few minor modifications say a high single book shelf running around the interior perimeter, for one. Good luck in the contest and creating the unit for yourself and son.


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