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Custom tiny home in Portland, Oregon

From OregonLive.com, 29 Oct., 2011, great article with 2 videos by Kelly House:
"Since she moved out of her parents' sprawling Texas home, Michelle Jones has downsized from a 2,100-square-foot residence to a studio apartment to a small house in Tacoma. (I think he must mean "Portland" - -LK)
   Nothing felt like home until Jones moved into an 8-by-14-foot dwelling with a trailer hitch and less square footage than a roll of toilet paper.
   Jones, 35, has lived in one of the Portland area's first custom-built "tiny houses" with her boyfriend, a cat and a 45-pound husky for just more than a year. She says she'll never return to a multi-room existence.…"


I'm off to Hong Kong

Ulp! A 15-hour flight and I can never sleep a wink on airplanes. I get in to HK 7 PM, and next morning at 9, will head out to printers via subway and shuttle. The book will take 3-4 days to print. Once the (Mitsubishi 3000 sheet-fed) press is rolling, I'll be doing press checks every 3 hours or so, probably staying in a room at the plant while it's rolling. I'm really excited to be at this stage, even with the weird sleeping pattern for press checks. I get to see two years' work flying off the press. "Can we up the red in here a bit..." and etc. It always makes a difference to be there.
I've always loved pressmen. I like the smell of ink and the hustle and the atmosphere. It's a highly-sophisticated skill. There's no room for mistakes. There's a definite brotherhood here, centered around putting ink on paper. I've been on the presses for the first run of every one of our color books. In the old days I did press checks on each 1-color book we printed, whether in Massachussets, Virginia, Indiana, or Tennessee.

Since I was going to be in that part of the world, I was  going to go to Borneo, or maybe to Hainan, an island off the coast of China, but a screwed-up shoulder scratched those plans. Seems to be a long healing process, so I need to get back and get it working again. Boy is it frustrating not to be able to paddle or swim. Can't even run. I'm always impatient, but the body (just about always) heals itself, it's always a wonder.

Norcal Beach Graffiti #3 (or is it # 4?)

Bedford motorhome for sale New Zealand $20,000

Hey New Zealanders: Posted Oct 17, 2011. Really nice!! See interior pics.

"1967 Bedford VAS Bus /7.5 Metres long /1993 4.2 Nissan Atlas Diesel Engine /Fully Automatic /Power Steering /All new front brakes

Fully Self Contained/Built for two people /Four Burner Stove & Oven /Fridge Gas/240 Volt /Shower & Marine Toilet …"


Settling into Smalltopia -- Tiny home

"…Making a dream a reality takes longer than expected and I think that’s a good thing. For instance, we’ve spent the last 4 years dreaming, designing, and saving for this little house. I’m glad we didn’t charge the house on our credit card.
   The culture of consumption makes it easy to buy now and pay later. I’ve often bought belongings in the moment because “I had to have it.” That type of process doesn’t offer a whole lot of time for reflection or planning. In the past, I seldom asked myself if an object would contribute to my life over the long-run, instead of just being a drain on my energy.
   Our little house has already brought us an incredible amount of joy and we’ve only been in it for two days! I expect we’ll grow to love it even more in the long-run. Waiting and planning has made this process a whole lot sweeter and saner.…"
   -Tammy Strobel at http://rowdykittens.com/2011/10/settling/
(Tammy has written an article on scaling back that will appear in our Tiny Homes book.)

Low-rent liveaboard life in high-rent San Francisco Bay

Fair Companies from Barcelona has a ton of great videos on tiny homes and other things.

"Fiver Brown is a musician and the kind of guy who has worked as a rodeo clown, a sushi photographer and a pirate, so he couldn’t really afford to buy a home in his current hometown of Sausalito with an average home price of 2.2 million dollars. So he bought a boat.
   Technically, he bought a floating home. It’s a former WWII lifeboat that had been converted into a small home and docked at one of the town’s historic houseboat communities.
   It’s only 13 feet by 37 feet (481 square feet), but the views are unbeatable. He watches stingrays and birds from the galley/kitchen and from his lofted bed he can peer down at his floating neighbors and the hills of Sausalito above.…"

How Occupy has shifted the national debate

Posted on Boing Boing by Cory Doctorow, Oct 28, 2011:
"Prior to Occupy Wall Street, the dominant narrative in US politics was about debt and deficit reduction, and the attendant austerity measures that entailed. A study of keywords from network newscasts shows that the national policy discussion has shifted in the wake of the Occupy demonstrations, with an increased emphasis on unemployment and fairness (this shift is also visible in print media).…"

Nikki on dumpster diving and tiny home living in Germany

There are 2 pages in our forthcoming book Tiny Homes: Simple Shelter on Nikki Stewart and her $1500 tiny home in Germany. I visited Nikki a few weeks ago when I was at the Frankfurt Book Fair. She lives, with husband and coming baby (February) in a wooded site adjacent to a large university in Mainz. She's got a website on "…caravan living, dumpster diving, scavenging, and living the free life…" at www.clickclackgorilla.com  

Elegant tiny prefab house in France

 Christine Durand is our chief correspondent in France.
Bonjour Lloyd!
The creativity of micro-architecture is always amazing. This elegant and movable cabin - named Zenzeyos (''be zen'') - can be put on blocks, on stilts (up to 15 meters high), or on floats. (It takes no) more than a half-day (to put it up).
Designer and builder : Jean-Jacques Lavoine (France)
-red cedar and stainless
-Weight 1650 kilograms
-Price : from 36 000 euros (50 000 dollars)
-Innovations :
•optimum ventilation and breathing walls (no condensation)
•self-rigid box (special system for the distribution of forces)
•eco-design with healthy materials and natural insulation (feathers)
•removable furniture
•wind or solar power.....

Regards and thanks for your blog !


5-cylinder 5-speed diesel Italian cargo van 4 sale in NY

26 Oct 2011
Lloyd -
The post today about the VW bus prompted me to send this link your way.
   Very cool Iveco (Italian commercial truck manufacturer) van on EBAY. 5 cyl diesel engine with 5 speed transmission. Would make for a nice camper conversion.
-- Phil
Phil Miano


Mike's tiny home in the snow

Oct 26, 2011
Hi Lloyd,
Saw the post with the tiny house in Illinois and was inspired to send  you a snow shot of my small home in North Carolina ( 350 sq. ft- 450 counting loft) .

Mike Moore (Michael J.- the micro car enthusiast).

Owner-built tiny home in Illinois

Another one from Kent Griswold's great tinyhouseblog:

"Like an Amish barn raising, Evan and Gabby’s tiny Tarleton house is going up piece by piece with the help of friends and family. The Illinois couple were inspired by the Tumbleweed houses and decided to downsize their already sustainable lifestyle even more. With no prior construction experience, they have been working on their tiny home for just over a year and plan to move in (along with their two cats) soon.…"

1978 VW van with Mercedes hubcaps

Nice rig. In the '60s I had a 1960 van set up like a camper. It had a 40 HP motor and I made one trip cross-country to NYC (in winter and to keep warm we draped sleeping bags over us), and also went into Puerto Vallarta before the bridge (had to drive through the river with a guide walking in front to indicate route). I also carried huge amounts of building materials on it for a house I built in Mill Valley, Calif., and for another house in Big Sur. 40 hp!

Reflecting lagoon

BC mountain bikers are animals!

This sent in by Joanne Laird. She and husband Andrew Dunkerton were in Builders of the Pacific Coast. This is an incredible film of their son Dylan and friends performing only-in-British-Columbia mountain bike maneuvers.

From the Inside Out Trailer from SecondBase Films on Vimeo.
To see it larger on Vimeo: http://vimeo.com/30532901

The true cost of owning a home

This from Ryan Mitchell's The Tiny Life website: http://www.thetinylife.com/tag/home/
"I found this infographic on the true cost of owning a traditional home and thought I would share it with you.
Click image for larger version"

Solar shower last night at 2 AM

In the '90s, I bought a passive solar heater from Dan Conroy in Grass Valley, Calif. basically a big box, triangular in cross-section, with a water tank painted black and double-walled clear polycarbonate glazing. Couldn't be simpler. It's worked flawlessly for 15 years. Every shower I take, I get a hit of both wonder and joy. This warm, sometimes hot water heated by sunshine and not nonrenewable resources. Such a non-brainer.
It's been really warm last few days, like in the '80s. I woke up at 2 last night, went out into the still-warm night, and took an outdoor solar-heated-water shower. The stars were out. Boy!
Getting ready to fly to Hong Kong next week to oversee printing of Tiny Homes: Simple Shelter. We've upped the press run to 15,000 due to early reactions to the book. At the same time we'll be printing 3,000 copies of our mini(1-½" x 2¼") tiny homes book. Is it cute! You can actually see what's going on on the pages at that scale.

Jimmy Reed 's Ain't that lovin' ya baby just came on, SO the real stuff…

The reincarnation of Steve Jobs

Copyright  http://www.mattbors.com/ Dist. by Universal Press
Discovered by Rick Gordon

Sandpiper II, Eco-Cottage manufactured home

Eco-cottages are small manufactured homes from Nationwide Homes. Sent us by John Grissim, author of The Grissim Ratings Guide to Manufactured Homes:: http://grissimguides.com/

Modernistic tiny house (a la Dwell mag)

"…a 220 sq. ft. tiny home that is 'total livability designed for mass production.' It is small and deluxe, with "top of the line appliances, a gourmet kitchen, a full projection screen to watch your favourite movies, and an outdoor patio. This and more comes standard with the L41. 'Versatile and affordable compared to conventionally-sized houses, it was "conceived for a generation that understands small is beautiful, and that believes in the importance of the preservation of our precious resources.'"

300 sq. ft. rustic cabin, solar elec., close to ocean Washington $49,000

Just discovered this site that seems quite active, tiny homes for sale all over the country. It's fun looking through the listings, the same way I like to look at the rural land and homes for sale in The Mother Earth News classifieds. None of these seem cheap compared to build-it-yourself, but compared to a house with mortgage…

"Log cabin with a large living room, 2 bed rooms (or one bedroom upstairs and a study/office), extra loft for sleeping or storage, 2 covered porches (front and back and wrap around on the side) and even a small balcony and a car port!

1971 31' Airstream for sale in Virginia $4000

"1971 Airstream Sovereign 31′ International Land Yacht travel trailer, hard to find original condition, has twin beds and rear bathroom, lots of space. Has not been camped in in several years, so will need some TLC. I know there are a few plumbing leaks, and one of the windows is shattered. The shell itself does not leak.

100 year-old man completes marathon, started running at 89

"The most impressive performance at a Toronto marathon Sunday was turned in by the man who came in last place - and is 100 years old.
   Fauja Singh completed the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon in approximately eight hours, making him the oldest person ever to finish one of the 26.2-mile races.
   It was the eighth marathon for Singh, who was born India in 1911 and did not start running marathons until he was 89, after he moved to England following the death of his wife and son. He says not smoking or drinking alcohol throughout his life, combined with a vegetarian diet and up to 10 miles of walking or running per day are the secrets to his health.…"
Discovered by Rick Gordon

Tiny home on wheels in BC, Canada

"And just like that, after many long days and nights, we are ready for the rainy season,... and not a minute too soon. As we apply the final pieces of siding, on our brow lay the first signs of the autumn rains. This is the true feeling of exultation. In this moment, life is bonded with the 4th dimension,... invisible, yet like the power of the wind, undeniable ... easily missed, rarely found,... this is the way of intimate feeling and experience. …"
Discovered this at: http://www.tinyhouseliving.com/

Building Smalltopia: We’ve got a roof!

Tammy Strobel wrote an essay on downsizing that will appear in our Tiny Homes book. Here's the latest (October 16, 2011)from Tammy:
"{Every week, I post a short essay about the little house we’re building. Enjoy!}

We only have 8 more days until the little house rolls into Portland! It’s hard to believe we’re going to move in so soon! Last weekend we got to hang out with Dee and Katy and while Katy was in town she had a chance to pick up our roof (pictured below) and kitchen counter."

Roadkill his sole diet

"English taxidermist Jonathan McGowan has made roadkill his sole diet for the past 30 years. At the age of 14, he tried a dead adder and while it didn’t taste very good, it made him curious to try other roadkill finds.
The taxidermist lists fox, venison and deer among his favourite meats – but he has eaten everything the countryside has to offer over the years.
With thousands of animals being found dead at the roadside every year, Mr McGowan has varied if – on the face of it – slightly unedifying pickings.
He has eaten mice, moles, hedeghogs, squirrels, rats, foxes, badgers, hares, rabbits, deer, stoats, weasels, polecats, otters, wildcats, pheasants, finches, thrushes, ducks, geese, pigeons, owls, crows, gulls, blackbirds and cormorants.
He says many animals taste much better than people would expect."
Thanks to Kevin Kelly

New video on natural builder SunRay Kelley

Lew discovered this. It stalls periodically, maybe something wrong in the encoding. We found it best to turn off sound and let it load. Once it's in the cache, you can play it straight through. (Seems somehow fitting that that the electronic world gets garbled around SunRay, who is a magician of the natural world.

Inspired By... SunRay Kelley from Shwood Eyewear on Vimeo.
"Growing up in the wild hills of the Pacific Northwest, it seems like SunRay was always building something. His favorite source of inspiration and materials is the woods around him, "God's Hardware Store" as he calls it. When working on a project it is not uncommon to see him pick up a saw and head off into the woods looking for the right piece of wood to present itself. If he says anything, he'll mumble 'I'm going shopping.'
Filmed by Gary Tyler Mcleod & Austin Will; Edited by Gary Tyler Mcleod"

Knock on Wood - Creative works by Jeff Uitto

"Date: Mon, 17 Oct 2011 10:48:25 -0700
To: lloyd@shelterpub.com
From: jeffro uitto 
Subject: my work inspired by your work

I love and appreciate your books, I flip through often for inspiration. I was hoping you would take a moment to check it out some of my stuff. www.jeffrouitto.com


Wow! And he's from Tokeland, Washington!
Info on Jeff: http://is.gd/jeffro

Mark Twain quotes

“I didn't have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.”
  -Mark Twain
Every once in a while I Google this to get the words right. So true. I'm really a slow writer.
Here are a lot of other great MT quotes. A guy after my own heart. http://thinkexist.com/quotation/i_didn-t_have_time_to_write_a_short_letter-so_i/338386.html

Supercharged Japanese 4X4 minivans

Lew just dug this up. Looks almost too good to be true. Sure worth checking out.

Are these cute or what?
"The Bulldog All Terrain Truck is the most versatile off road vehicle on the market.
• At 4.5 x 10 ft and only weighing around 1400 lbs, these mini trucks haul easily to the hunting camp, farm or the trail ride. The truck is around 5 1/2 ft tall so it provides a comfortable ride while being able to ease around the trails and backroads.
• All models are right hand drive. Most models have a powerful 660 cc, 3 cylinder gasoline engine that will get over 40 mpg while running in excess of 55 mph. An 8 gallon gas tank has never provided so much.
• Models come with 4, 5 or 6 speed transmissions, automatics are very rare but available in limited quanitity. We are able to provide you with the best service, all parts and accessories that you would need for these trucks."
We now offer Custom Extended Cab Trucks. Starting at $7300
Shreveport, LA: 318-402-8834

Latest GIMME SHELTER newsletter

Before blogging, these newsletters were my main means of communicating (other than the very occasional book). This one is primarily for book people, mostly about the Frankfurt Book Fair as well as our plans for the future: http://www.shelterpub.com/_gimme/_2011-10-18/gimme_shelter-2011-10-18.html

Stewart Brand on Laura Cunningham's paintings and studies of ancient California ecology

A reconstruction of San Francisco around 1300 A.D. from Nob Hill, looking east across the bay toward Oakland. © Laura Cunningham
"California ecology used to be much more driven by floods and fires, Cunningham said, showing with her paintings how the Great Valley would become a vast inland sea, like a huge vernal pool progressing each year from navigable water to intense flower displays to elk-grazed grassland. Lake Merritt in Oakland was a salt water inlet. On the Albany mudflats grizzly bears would tunnel into a beached humpback whale for food, joined by California condors. Every fall at the Carquinez Strait a million four-foot-long chinook salmon headed inland to spawn.
Only 300 years ago the whole Bay Area was grasslands, routinely burned by the local Indians. There were oaks in the valleys, redwoods in the Berkeley Hills, and extensive oak savannahs inland. The hills were greener more of the year than now, with fire-freshened grass attracting elk, and native perennial grasses drawing moisture with their deep roots.

Love letter to people who comment on this blog

When I got back from Germany (a week at the Frankfurt Book Fair), I reviewed all the comments (on various posts) that I've received recently, and they're quite wonderful. I'm learning a lot. People are amplifying (and correcting) the info in the posts, as well as letting me know when I'm connecting. Inspiration to keep going.

I have about 1000-1500 visitors a day. Not exactly viral, but a nice-sized community. I love doing this, to tell the truth. Blogging is foremost in my mind when I come into the studio each morning, even tho it's non-remunerative. I'm excited about what I see in the world, and want to tell others. It's communication, pure and simple, which has fascinated me since my high school course in journalism. I'd love to work on a newspaper, but I can't write that fast, and my stomach wouldn't handle the deadline pressure. So I publish the (very) occasional book, and now try to get out a blog post each day. I don't have time to respond to many comments, and could never take the time to do Facebook as it's being done. But this, a daily shot or two, works for me. The web allows me to broadcast.

This blog community reminds me a bit of the booklovers in Fahrenheit 451, who were semi-outlaws on the outskirts of the regulated society and dedicated to books and the earth and freedom.

Five-fold symmetry

Three more antique books, pics shot this afternoon

Photos around Bad Homburg tonight

Sunday late afternoon I stepped outside the hotel, for the first time in a week without a heavy backpack, and felt light as a feather. Got my mo-bility workin, was able to move along smartly in the 2-mile walk into the town center, and shot photos. If I haven't mentioned it before (probably have), the Canon Powershot S95 little pocket camera is in a class by itself. I have it with me almost all the time.

A pretty spiffy live-aboard van (Not a VW, couldn't see any indication of maker.)

Electric solar bike at Fair

Literary Agents' Centre

This is the most intense place at the Book Fair. There are about 500 agents from all over the world and the demand (for their services) is way greater than the supply (of willing agents). Luckily, much of it dating back to my Random House days, I have some wonderful agents. But with Japan, for example, I've had very little luck in even getting a meeting with agents. They're already overbooked.
Access to this room is guarded. It helps to walk past the Monitors of the Gateway as if you belong. Agents have meetings every half hour, so you need to move along smartly. It's a very exciting place.

Himmel und erde

Dinner last night at the Kartoffelkuche restaurant in Bad Homburg. Himmel und erde, Heaven and earth: mashed potatoes, chopped liver, bacon und blutwurst, mit apple sauce. The name means, I take it -- couldn't get any better. Delicious and hearty. With two glasses of (dry) apple wine. Felt like I should have spent a day working in the fields to justify this.

So long, Steve

He may have suffered fools badly, but he left us with a legacy of elegance. The photo on the cover of this future blockbuster book included.

Beautiful old books

The above:
1. Printed 1767!
2. Price: 29,500 Euros ($40,000)!

Lovejoy is a character in a series of English mysteries who is a "divvy" of antiques. He can divine authenticity. Sometimes an old object will almost knock him out. I felt something similar with some of these very old, very beautiful books yesterday, almost a ringing in the ears. Another book of drawings of chameleons was 12,000 Euros. There was a 1901 first printing of Eadweard Muybridge's The Human Figure in Motion for 1700 Euros. And in the more reasonable zone for 60 Euros, America by Walker Evans, black and white photos from the depression, a powerful book. (I just ordered a used copy online for $33.00.)
I didn't realize it was the inspiration (totally) for Robert Frank's photo book The Americans from the 1950s. Evans is the photographer who teamed up with writer James Agee to do the classic Let Us Now Praise Famous Men in 1941, a book I idolized in the '60s when I was starting to shoot photos.
When I left the room of rare books, a lady guard asked to look inside my backpack. SOP. Understood. Totally.

Great sketches from American in Deutschland

This just in:
Owl has left a new comment on (the below) post…::

Hope you don't mind Lloyd, I thought I would put a link on here from an American sketch artist who is living and working in Germany, I enjoy his work and he captures the buildings beautifully. Hope you like it.

More old buildings in Bad Homburg

 Check out the slate shingled eyebrows of 2 windows above.

Incredible first day at Book Fair

Kind of a miracle: I really fucked up my shoulder yesterday, couldn't sleep because of pain, was stressing over having 3 full days and 19 appointments, how am I even gonna get thru the first day, etc. No ice, so applied cold bottle of soda, took advil, tried to breathe into the injury,thought about my Mom and her Christian Science (lived to 103, never had a doctor) and how she healed herself and us again and again "…by holding the right thought" and lo and behold dawn broke and I was OK and I went off and had an exciting and wonderful day in the world of books, within which The Frankfurt Buchmesse is the Super Bowl, World Cup and Big Kahuna.

People loved the Tiny Homes book. Just loved it. People that had time went thru the entire book, every page. It feels like we've connected here. Today: meetings with publishers, editors or distributors from Canada, Poland, UK, Germany, South Africa, Australia. There's a buzz. Same reaction. (I'm so proud of the people in this book!) Everyone gets it. Haven't had this feeling since 1973 when we were putting together Shelter and hit the wave of counterculture building. This time it's a wave of doing for oneself (once again), and scaling back.

Lots to tell, including some stunning antique books I saw today (one was 38,000 Euros!), will try to catch up on the weekend.

Model car in store window

It's 55 Euros, about $75.00