Focus: The Tiny House

Over the last few years, the Tiny House has increasingly become a lifestyle goal and design phenomena that seems to grow from strength to strength. Fed up with the mental stress and financial strain of normal living, people have embraced a more self-sufficient approach to their homes and gone for the Tiny House. An ethos otherwise known as ‘compact’ or ‘simple’ living, there is immense creativity and flexibility within this design concept, a concentration on form and function that enables ease in an efficient space.


Just as it sounds a Tiny House is a structure normally no larger than 400 sq. ft, often built either on foundations or wheels making it mobile. The Tiny House can come in all different shapes, sizes and methods but the key principle is modest living. 

Rather than abundance in larger homes and maximalist design, people are choosing to downsize and live with a lot less. There is a freedom and efficiency that comes with tiny house living that can boost your quality of life. 

The Tiny House is not a novelty, rather an intriguing social movement in which people are ecologically aware of their impact on the planet and are unable to maintain a lifestyle based on the traditional financial expectations of society. 

A Tiny House is low cost and energy efficient as well as easier to maintain and they are most suited to those that love to travel, empty nesters or those enjoying retirement.


The Tiny House forces us to live with a lot less, but this is not necessarily a bad thing. Instead, we can focus on items that are high quality, sentimental and that bring us joy. We make room for the things that are important and get rid of anything unnecessary that causes us clutter and chaos in our personal space. What a tiny home lacks in size they make up for in minimalist, stylish interior design.

There are a few design tips when decorating a tiny house:

  • SOFT COLOURS – keep your colour palette neutral with soft and light hues. This guarantees the space will feel bright and spacious. 
  • DUAL PURPOSE – select items that can work in varying ways taking up less literal space but not reducing the functionality of your tiny home, such as a sofa/ bed combination or tables that double up as dining and workspace.
  • MIRRORS – a tried and tested formula within interior design, make your space feel larger by including mirrors on the wall. The best way to produce an illusion of greater sq. footage is to place the mirrors opposite a window, reflecting as much natural light into the tiny home as possible.
  • QUALITY OVER QUANTITY – limiting the number of objects in your tiny house means you can focus on the quality. Go for high end pieces that you love and that will be worth the investment in the long term. 
  • UTILISE YOUR WALLS – all space is valuable in a tiny home including the walls. Wall mounting items can be practical as well as decorative and don’t forget the corners of your home, this can be suitable for shelving storage.


  • Careful zoning of your space
  • Clever storage with hidden compartments
  • Fold away furnishing to claim back floor space
  • Wall mount objects when possible
  • Sliding doors for privacy and spatial convenience
  • Stairs and Ladders for access as well as storing throws, towels etc.


Niliaitta Cabin by Studio Puisto

Located at the Kivijarvi wellness retreat and resort in Finland this tiny black cabin is raised off the ground and features a bed, bathroom and kitchenette. The interior is cosy with timber panelled walls and velvety soft furnishings contrasting with the unpredictable wild nature outdoors.

Base Cabin by Studio Edwards

A combination of the Airstream and a rural hut, this contemporary mobile home is constructed from an aluminium frame and black rubber. Streamlined geometric shapes give the cabin a modern edge inside and out, with the interior featuring a bathroom, living/ dining space, a bedroom as well as wooden panels that lead up to a central skylight.

Tenir Eco Hotels by Levelstudio

These tiny modular cabins in Almaty, Kazakhstan are a calm oasis from the harsh climate that surround them. Within these tiny spaces there is minimalist luxury seen in the rich colour of the natural wood panelling, the sunny yellow sumptuous sofa and the supreme quality in the finishes.

The Whitsett West Tiny Home Village by Lehrer Architects

A Los Angeles architectural studio has designed a hub of tiny homes specifically for the homeless on a previously unused piece of land.  These cheerfully coloured tiny homes are only 8’ x 8’ but there is also shared community space set aside on the lot for eating, pet care, cleaning and washing. There is a sense of individuality and joy within the design that augments the urgency and timely importance of this project.