The Origin Treehouse has an amazing interior that will blow your mind

January 19, 2018 by  
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Paris-based firm Atelier LAVIT just unveiled a beautiful treehouse with a surprisingly sophisticated twist. The octagon-shaped Origin Treehouse wraps around a hundred-year-old oak in a lush canopy of treetops. While some treehouse designers take a more rustic approach to their interiors, the French architects went another route, creating a living space that provides hotel-like comfort – and it even features a heated spa and lounge area. The Origin Treehouse consists of two structure: a platform with a heated spa and a lounge area that sits on a lower level. The second structure is a soaring “birds nest” that’s hidden by the lush foliage. High up in the trees, the 250-square-foot treehouse is accessed via a suspended walkway from the first platform. Related: Microsoft unveils amazing treehouse office where employees can brainstorm in fresh air Two large sliding glass doors open up to the living space, whose sophisticated design is certainly unique in the world of treehouses. The interior was based on the principles of hotel design: it’s simple, elegant and clutter-free. The interior walls are lined with light poplar panels, giving the space a clean, bright feel. Just past the living space lies a small sitting area, a bedroom, the bathroom, and a technical closet. The octagonal shape of the treehouse allowed the architects to install plenty of large windows, which flood the interior with natural light. Those wanting to get even closer to nature can take a wooden ladder from the back deck to a stunning rooftop terrace that provides panoramic views of the forest. According to the architects, the cabin’s unique design was meant to blend into the serene forestscape: “Origin Tree House discreetly stands out among the centenarian oaks of the Château de Raray forest, as if it had always been part of the scenery. Majestic and elegant, it integrates and completes an already impressive landscape, sublimating it by offering a shelter.” + Atelier LAVIT Via Contemporist Photography by Marco Lavit Nicora

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The Origin Treehouse has an amazing interior that will blow your mind

The Droplet is a light-filled teardrop trailer inspired by Scandinavian design

January 9, 2018 by  
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The world of tiny campers just got a lot cuter thanks to the Droplet . The Scandinavian-inspired teardrop trailer fits a queen size mattress and a fully equipped kitchen within a modern insulated shell. Its light size of just 950 lbs can be towed by most medium-sized cars, making the camping pod ideal for traveling the world. The Droplet is the brainchild of Diane and Pascal from Vancouver B.C. After years of hauling their camping gear from their homes to the car, the outdoor lovers came up with the idea for a ready-to-go camping solution . Related: Darling Tinycamper from Lithuania starts at just 7K Although compact, the Droplet trailer is equipped with all of the basics needed to live on the road. Its envelope is insulated with strong laminated foam, which makes it an all-season camper. The interior is built around a comfortable 6″ queen-size mattress. Storage at the bed’s foot provides room for essentials. At the sides of the bed are two large felt pockets for nighttime items like phones and books, and two LED reading lamps. What makes the Droplet especially comfortable are two features normally not found in tiny trailers: large doors and windows. The pod has two large doors on either side of the bed for easy entry. Large windows and a pop-up star-gazing skylight flood the interior with natural light . The camping pod’s backend hides a a fully-equipped kitchen, again with all the basics for living life on the road. The back hatch swings open to reveal the countertop and backsplash. There is a slide-out fridge and a 2 burner propane cooking stove, along with a recessed sink equipped with a hand-pumped closed-loop water system. + Droplet Images via Droplet

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The Droplet is a light-filled teardrop trailer inspired by Scandinavian design

This ultra-chic Paris micro studio is part home, part transformer

December 27, 2017 by  
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The old adage “necessity is the mother of invention” is never more appropriate than when trying to design a beautiful home in an extremely tiny space . Paris-based Batiik Studio managed to create a spectacular home out of just 118 square feet by outfitting the entire space with transforming furniture. Batiik’s Marie Josephine apartment is the epitome of space-saving architecture and design. In the kitchen, most everything of use is hidden behind a minimalist façade. The fridge and oven are hidden behind a retro flexible wall, and the countertops and cabinet doors swivel open to reveal hidden storage. Seating is also covert – a cobalt blue table folds down flat when not in use. Related: Cool micro studio in Budapest makes the most out of 344 square feet The compact studio certainly befits from Batiik’s minimalist design approach . Neutral colors keep the space light and airy, and beautiful archways add character to the apartment while delineating spaces. A loveseat couch doubles as a fold-out bed, and a small table pulls double duty as nightstand and coffee table. An invisible closet is hidden behind another arch. + Batiik Studio Via Apartment Therapy Photography via Batiik Studio

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This ultra-chic Paris micro studio is part home, part transformer

Lightweight suspended tree tent can hold a whopping 700 pounds

December 27, 2017 by  
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For campers who are sick of lugging around bulky old-fashioned tents, the Tentnest is a breath of fresh air. Part hammock and part tent, the lightweight system fits easily in a backpack and can be set up anywhere in just 15 minutes. Even though it is suspended off the ground, the Tentnest is quite sturdy and can withstand some serious weight – more than 700 pounds. The Tentnest, which recently completed a successful Kickstarter campaign, was designed to streamline the adventure process. Thanks to its easy-to-hang system , the tent can be set up in just minutes in virtually any landscape. The only thing it needs is three trees or connection spots for the straps. It’s also very spacious and can sleep a family of three, two full-size adults and a child. Related: This hybrid hammock tent lets you float between the trees The suspended system avoids that bothersome feeling of sleeping on rocks or hard land. And since it’s off the ground, there’s no creepy crawlies around to bite you. It’s also 100% waterproof with zippered entrances, so if you find yourself in the middle of a rain or snow storm, Tentnest has got you covered, literally. + Tentnest Kickstarter

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Lightweight suspended tree tent can hold a whopping 700 pounds

Firefighter’s self-built tiny house is an earthship on wheels

December 19, 2017 by  
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When he’s not putting out fires in Edmonton, Canada, firefighter Steve has managed to find time to build an Earthship-inspired tiny home on wheels. The 140-square-foot home , which can easily go off-grid, has all the comforts of a traditional residence – including a queen size bed, a deck and even a mini vertical herb garden in the kitchen. And of course, it was built to meet building codes for fire safety. Steve built his little shelter after taking a one-year sabbatical, during which time he traveled via campervan , volunteering on many tiny ship builds along the way. Having honed his building skills, he came back to Edmonton to construct his own earthship-inspired tiny home. Located in a the backyard of a home that he rents out, the compact dwelling was recently featured by Living Big in a Tiny House . Related: Architect builds a tiny studio in his backyard to be closer to his child The entrance to Steve’s home is via an open-air wooden deck that’s a perfect space for reading or bbq-ing. The interior living space is bordered with seating and storage cubbies on the wall. This main room doubles as the bedroom when the pull-out queen bed that’s hidden under the kitchen platform is rolled out. The kitchen is definitely designed for someone who has a love of all things culinary. The L-shaped layout makes for an ultra-efficient space and easy movement. A wall of vertical shelving has ample space for basic condiments as well as space to grow herbs , although Steve admit to killing most of them. The floor of the tiny home is brick, which was Steve’s attempt at creating a high thermal mass for passive heating. However, he’s planning to replace the flooring with wooden panels because the brick’s heat isn’t faring well against the cold Canadian winters. However, the home is still well-heated thanks to the three different heating options: woodstove, propane heater or electric patio heater. During the design process, Steve wanted to make the home as off-grid as possible. Now, it sits in the backyard and uses the utilities from the main house, but the idea was to have a roaming independent space. The main structure is built on wheels and hot water is provided by a propane-powered water heater. For extra sustainability, there is an incinerating toilet in the bathroom. When asked about his inspiration to build the tiny home , the firefighter explained it’s all about financial practicality, “For me, it was how the economics of it make sense. I rent the big house out and the tenants pay the mortgage, so by me staying in the small house in the backyard, I’m living a mortgage-free lifestyle right now, immediately, while I’m still collecting equity in the main house. So that makes sense to me and that’s a good situation to be in.” Via Treehugger Video and images via Living Big in a Tiny House

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San Jose city council approves tiny home village for homeless

December 13, 2017 by  
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San Jose has been struggling with homelessness , and think they have an answer: tiny homes . The City Council recently voted nine to two approving a pilot program to construct a 40-unit tiny house village . Architecture firm Gensler unveiled two design concepts created pro-bono for the city earlier this month, with houses designed to be both aesthetically attractive and efficient. San Jose’s city council just approved a year-long tiny home village program. Elected officials must now determine three potential sites for the pilot. The idea was suggested around a year ago, and would offer 80- to 140-square foot shelters in what are called Bridge Housing Communities. San Jose seems to view the housing as an interim solution, referring to the shelters as emergency sleeping cabins . Around 25 people could dwell in each community, and The Mercury News said the city aims to have a village in each of the 10 city council districts. Related: Dutch studio unveils colorful solar-powered village for area homeless Gensler offered two designs, one called Folding Home and the other Better Together. A small bed, locking door, and windows could be features of the tiny homes. The city also said each site could have community bathrooms and showers, a cooking facility, common areas, and case management onsite to help residents. Some elected leaders have criticized the city’s plan for its cost: $73,125 per tiny house for 40 units. Some people have suggested sanctioned encampments as an alternative, but others argued against legal tent cities in Silicon Valley. Nonprofit Destination: Home executive director Jennifer Loving told The Mercury News, “Sleeping in a tent outside is not the best we can do. We have to start somewhere and a home, even temporary, is better than a tent on the ground.” + Gensler Via The Mercury News ( 1 , 2 ) and the City of San Jose ( 1 , 2 ) Images via Gensler/City of San Jose

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San Jose city council approves tiny home village for homeless

Turns out blood-sucking ticks really did plague the dinosaurs

December 13, 2017 by  
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Scientists have found the first solid evidence that prehistoric ticks consumed dinosaur blood. The discovery of a 99-million year old piece of amber in Myanmar offers a rare glimpse into the lives of Cretaceous animals, large and small. Trapped within the fossilized sap, the tick is seen grasping onto a feather presumed to be from a feathered dinosaur. Though Mezozoic-era blood-sucking insects encased in amber have become part of the public’s imagination thanks to the  Jurassic Park films, the fossil record previously lacked clear evidence that dinosaur blood was on the menu. “Ticks are infamous blood-sucking, parasitic organisms, having a tremendous impact on the health of humans, livestock, pets, and even wildlife,” study lead researcher Enrique Peñalver told EurekaAlert , “but until now clear evidence of their role in deep time has been lacking.” Although the tick in life did indeed drink dinosaur blood, it is not possible to extract DNA from an amber-enclosed insect, a la Jurassic Park , because of the short life of complex DNA molecules. Nonetheless, the fossil adds considerably to our understanding of ecology in the age of the dinosaurs. “The fossil record tells us that feathers like the one we have studied were already present on a wide range of theropod dinosaurs, a group which included ground-running forms without flying ability, as well as bird-like dinosaurs capable of powered flight,” said Ricardo Pérez-de la Fuente, researcher at University of Oxford Museum of Natural History. Related: Scientists discover 52-million-year-old tomatillo fossil “So although we can’t be sure what kind of dinosaur the tick was feeding on,” continued Pérez-de la Fuente, “the mid-Cretaceous age of the Burmese amber confirms that the feather certainly did not belong to a modern bird , as these appeared much later in theropod evolution according to current fossil and molecular evidence.” In addition to the dino-centric discovery, researchers also identified a new species of tick, dubbed Deinocroton draculi or “Dracula’s terrible tick,”encased in a separate piece of amber. Via ScienceAlert Images via University of Oxford

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Turns out blood-sucking ticks really did plague the dinosaurs

Green-roofed Viewpoint Granasjen is a modern take on the traditional Norwegian hut

December 1, 2017 by  
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The traditional Norwegian hut got a brilliant update with this modern, sustainable retreat that offers stunning views of the country’s fjords and mountains. Bergersen Arkitekter AS designed Viewpoint Granasjøen as a combination of shelter and summer house that recreates the old Norwegian Gapahuk (English: lean-to) as a multi-functional, flexible space that can be used throughout the year. The structure functions as a  summer house  escape, complete with grill, shed, and bathhouse, and was designed in close collaboration with the client and his specific needs and requirements. It is clad in dark brown stained wood that matches the main cabin on the property. A turf roof provides additional insulation and is angled to blend into the landscape. Related: Coastal cabin in Norway is a perfect indoor retreat for outdoor lovers Large sliding glass panels provide a direct connection to and offer expansive views of the surroundings. The interior is simple, with a custom-built bench for seating and a small built-in fireplace . + Bergersen Arkitekter AS Via Plataforma Arquitectura Photos by Kjetil Nordø

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Green-roofed Viewpoint Granasjen is a modern take on the traditional Norwegian hut

MUJIs $26k prefab huts are finally available for sale

November 7, 2017 by  
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The wait is over— MUJI’s microhomes are now officially on sale to the public. Ever since MUJI debuted their line of tiny prefabricated homes in 2015, fans of the minimalist design brand have eagerly awaited the chance to get their hands on one of their tiny prefabricated homes, called MUJI Huts , starting at a little over $26,000 USD. Per MUJI’s famous minimalist aesthetic, the MUJI Huts are elegant and understated. Timber surfaces and a light-tone color palette creates a cozy and welcoming character. The first MUJI Hut to hit the market is a compact 9-square-meter cabin clad in blackened timber and lined in domestic fir wood. Sliding glass doors let in ample natural light and open up to a small covered patio. The simplicity of the design makes it easy for the microhome to adapt to variety of environments and uses. Related: MUJI to sell eagerly awaited $27k minimalist tiny homes this fall Base pricing for the MUJI Hut starts at 3 million yen (approximately $26,340 USD), tax and construction costs included. Insulation and electrical outlets are optional add-ons. Unfortunately, MUJI Hut is presently only available for sale in Japan—lucky residents can order a microhome from MUJI’s global flagship store at Yurakucho —but fans of the microhome are always welcome to test drive a MUJI Hut at the MUJI Camp in Tsumagoi , about an hour out of Tokyo via bullet train. + MUJI Hut Via SoraNews24

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MUJIs $26k prefab huts are finally available for sale

Skinny micro-apartment can pop up in any city in just one day

October 17, 2017 by  
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The thought of living in an apartment with the footprint of a parking space may seem improbable and uncomfortable, but the chic Tikku micro-apartment shows us that it can be done. In response to pressures of the housing crises, Finnish architect Marco Casagrande of Casagrande Laboratory designed and built a prefabricated mobile micro-apartment that can pop up in as little as a day. The three-story-tall micro-apartment is designed to be mobile so it can go almost anywhere a car can—with enough overhead clearance—and can operate off the grid. Tikku, which means ‘stick’ in Finnish, earns its name from its skinny profile and timber construction assembled from cross-laminated timber modules. The stackable modules occupy the footprint of a parking space measuring 2.5 by 5 meters and require no foundations thanks to a sand box counterweight located at the bottom of the building. Even in Finland’s brutal winters, the architects say that 20-centimeter-thick cross-laminated timber is sufficient to weather the cold without added insulation . The first Tikku prototype was unveiled for the Helsinki Design Week 2017 outside Atheneum in the heart of Helsinki. The 37.5-square-meter micro-apartment includes three floors, one for sleeping, another for working, and the topmost reserved for a light-filled greenhouse. The CLT modules allow for easy customization and the introduction of different living spaces, from a kitchen and sauna to knitting room and workshop. Related: NYC announces opening of its first micro-apartment building, Carmel Place The Tikku is self-sufficient and runs off of solar energy. Composting toilets are installed, however running water is not. Residents are expected to make use of their urban resources for showers, saunas, and laundry machines—a reasonable expectation for cities like Helsinki or Tokyo that have that infrastructure. “Tikku is a safe-house for neo-archaic biourbanism, a contemporary cave for a modern urban nomad,” wrote the architects. “It will offer privacy, safety and comfort. All the rest of the functions can be found in the surrounding city. Tikku is a needle of urban acupuncture, conquering the no-man’s land from the cars and tuning the city towards the organic. Many Tikkus can grow side-by-side like mushrooms and they can fuse into larger organisms.” + Casagrande Laboratory Via ArchDaily Images via Casagrande Laboratory

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