Relaxshax's Blog


Happy New Years Eve/New Years! (a "NEW YEARS" Novelty Shack Design)
December 31, 2011, 1:59 pm
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Happy New Years (or “Eve”) all- I hope you have/had a safe one! As for resolutions, we’ll skip the blather (as I always break them anyway- like the year I told myself I’d give up drinking “Yoohoo”- I mean c’mon, why live?? (kidding- not a fan of it…)) and get right to sketch #28- a goofy, novelty one….

I’m starting to spoof all the holidays with cabin sketches apparently (we’ve done thanksgiving and christmas cabins now)- perhaps it’ll become a pointless, seldomly purchased e-book someday “Holiday-related cabin designs, that really aren’t practical, economical, or even logical” By Zorgog Flibbleglop (I’ll have to use an alter-ego, as the book would be really lousy).

What’s next, an Arbor Day tiny house?? Actually, that one would be too easy by means of some tree house design. Yom Kippur?  Boxing Day (also too easy…).

Anyway, this is sketch #28 (of SIXTY) leading up to the release of the new version of “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks”– which is ALREADY up on amazon.com– reviews and all- and damn cheap- $11.53!

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Again, many of these sketches in this SIXTY SHACK SKETCHES IN SIXTY DAYS series– SUCK. They are merely rough drafts. The one’s in “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks” ROCK!- Well, I dig ’em at least- lol.

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen
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Lloyd Kahn’s New Tiny House Book, A Cool Shed Sighting, and Shipping Container Shack Sketch #27!
December 30, 2011, 6:18 pm
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Try sayin’ THAT blog-post title ten times fast!

A FEW THINGS IN THIS ONE POST (wiser men would make it a separate post or two, but not me….not me….)
     Anyway, its been a KICK-ARSE week of books in the mail, having received an advance print of my own book “Humble Homes Simple Shacks” (below) from The Lyons Press (it looks AMAZING and I don’t have a single complaint!), and just the other day, Lloyd Kahn’s “Tiny Homes, Simple Shelter” from Shelter Publications.

     For starters, as I’ll have a review up down the road, let me just say that its the best damn tiny house book, photographically (I haven’t read the text yet), that I’ve seen. Period. Its a visual tsunami of tiny house offerings. Fans of Kahn’s “Homework”, “Shelter”, and “Builder’s Of The Pacific Coast” won’t be left disappointed.
     I started (foolishly- I don’t know what kind of cheap street crack someone slipped me) this “SIXTY SHACK SKETCHES IN SIXTY DAYS” marathon leading up to the Feb 1st release of “Humble Homes”, and now have an eye twitch goin’ on five days as a result of bustin’ ass with a pen and a pad. Now, Lloyd’s going to be the culprit for my other good eye going into spastic fits from overuse, as I prepare to hole myself up somewhere for the next few days to read, and probably re-read this book. The book just looks incredible. You’d be stupid not to get it (and ten copies of my new book of course! hyuk hyuk (insert game show smile and cgi’d tooth gleam). Actually, Lloyd drops some design advice in one of my new chapters, alongside Jay Shafer, Gregory Johnson, Kent Griswold, Alex Pino, Michael Janzen, Tammy Strobel, and about ten more….so it all ties together here.

 Back on Lloyd’s book, I’m psyched as all hell to be part of it too, as Lloyd gave me and my Vermont cabin, and sketches, a two page spread.

I’ve tossed a link (you can pre-order it (out Feb 15th) to “Tiny Homes, Simple Shelter”.

 Changing Course…
As for this random “anywhere USA” shed sighting, its from my own town of Stoughton, Massachusetts, proving that cool guests houses, shacks, and well, sheds, can be spotted just about anywhere if you keep your eyes peeled. I love the second story approach with this one, and a design like this could very easily be converted into a micro-housing/tiny home design.

AND- SKETCH #27 of “WHY THE HECK DID I PROMISE SIXTY NEW SHACK, SHED, TINY HOUSE, and COTTAGE CONCEPTS IN SIXTY DAYS!!?” (kidding)….

This one is a mere exterior sketch of a what I thought would be a fun looking shipping container/conex box home concept. I’ve dubbed it “The Wooly Bear” (or “not-so Wooly” as it is a cold, hard, steel facade).

CLICK ON THE DRAWING TO ENLARGE IT….

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen


I’m back! (three sketches in our series of SIXTY)- and our new treehouse video…
December 29, 2011, 11:26 am
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First- thanks to Lloyd Kahn over at Lloydkahn.com for posting on my “Top Ten Tiny House Books” list….

And before we get to the new sketches below (part of our “Sixty Shack Sketches In Sixty Days”– leading to the release of that new version of my book “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks” (below)), here’s my latest video for Make Magazine- part of my “Tiny Yellow House” series. Its a how-to/tour on a tree house, dubbed “The Wolfe’s Den” that I built and designed out in the Catskills (NY).

As for the sketches- here are a few new, and lesser seen ones I’ve done- some merely rough ideas, but they convey the point/concepts….these are sketches #24, #25, and #26 (ALMOST half way there!)

Some of you who have been to the far end of Nantucket might recognize this one….its a tiny sideline sketch that actually appears in a text section of the new version of “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks”.
An assortment of stilt-cabin rough sketch ideas….

A mini sketch illustrating the multi-purpose stair set-up in my Vermont Cabin/Tiny House.
Our new book (CLICK HERE)- an expanded version, with added designs/chapters of “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks”

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen



"The Horror Hut"- for lack of a better name- a solar, writer’s shack/tiny retreat house
December 27, 2011, 5:06 pm
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I’m pretty much finished with my latest mini-cabin, a solar greenhouse that also doubles as a backyard office, or in this case a writer’s retreat (for horror fiction author John Grover- www.shadowtales.com). I’m pretty pleased with how it came out, and I’ll have MANY more photos soon (and specs, details, cost wrap ups, etc).


And a lil’ tiny house updating/news….

THANKS to Steven Harrell over at tinyhouselistings.com for posting on my Wolfe’s Den Treehouse Video (which I just released I haven’t even posted on my blog yet! perhaps tomorrow).

Also- Big Thanks to Kent Griswold at tinyhouseblog.com for posting on my Christmas-Tree-Shaped Tiny House concept too- on Christmas Day….

Alex Pino over at tinyhousetalk also has a REALLY cool web event (limited to 100 chatters) happening tomorrow as well- 9pm EST- check out www.tinyhousetalk.com for details…

And….more on it soon, but in February, myself, Dee Williams, Jay Shafer, and Pepper Clark will be gathering in Seattle for something tiny house related- which should be a blast, and a fun chance for quite a few of us tiny housing nuts to get together and swap ideas.

I’ll post TWO new sketches tomorrow too- as part of “Sixty Shack Sketches In Sixty Days”…..I have to run and don’t have time to scan the new stuff right now….

  Only- $11.53- the NEW edition of my book- up now on Amazon.com- 60+ cabin, tiny house, and cottage concepts….CLICK HERE TO CHECK IT OUT!

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen



What’s the smallest room in the world? A "mushROOM"- guffaw, guffaw…..Tiny House Sketch #23
December 26, 2011, 11:03 am
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Hope you all had a great holiday! I had a great time with family- ungodly amounts of really good food, some very thoughtful gifts (one, the book “Atchafalaya Houseboat” I’ve already read, and will have a review on soon), and some good wine- zero complaints.

     Anyway, standing as #23 in our “SIXTY SHACK SKETCHES IN SIXTY DAYS” tiny house/cabin/camp/shanty/fort/tree house-concept series- leading up to the official release of the new “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks” book (already up for ordering on Amazon.com)- here’s a mushroom shaped cabin. This little house could both be used for kids or for adults, just based on its size possibilities. The one shown here uses two full standing sheets of plywood for EACH side- so its 64 square feet within, and eight feet tall- enabling you to possibly add a tiny half loft for sleeping, IF you don’t need a ton of headroom below- or full and total standing room on one side of the structure (ie- if you placed a couch beneath the loft, etc).

 Also- on the way….

-An interview I did with Tammy Strobel of Rowdykittens.com
-Our new TREEHOUSE video episode of “Tiny Yellow House” (you might have seen it already and THANKS TO KENT GRISWOLD for posting on it too- he’s at tinyhouseblog.com
-New photos of out completed writer’s retreat that I built and designed for horror author John Grover- which came out GREAT! Check him out at shadowtales.com
-A couple book reviews…AND THEN SOME….
-Steven Harrell over at tinyhouselistings.com MIGHT also be posting up some unseen “Wolfe’s Den Treehouse” photos of mine at some point too- his site is great, if you haven’t checked it out yet! 

Again, check out our NEW “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks” book/reviews by clicking here! Thanks! 

Derek “Deek” Diedricksen


MERRY EARLY CHRISTMAS! with a Christmas Tree Shaped Micro Hut/Tiny House!
December 24, 2011, 8:52 am
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 -And a Happy Holidays to all else who don’t celebrate Christmas…..  
     I’m crunched for time here, with so many things to do, and family events, so here’s something I LITERALLY sketched (I watched the clock) in six minutes (and I prob will not have a post tomorrow). Its an idea I’ll elaborate on later with a better sketch, perhaps for a future book even. This is something I actually always wanted to build, and I also have a (even worse) sketch of the concept from 2007. Anyway, if someone beats me to building this tiny little tree house (made from trees AND shaped like one), as I’ve now posted the idea worldwide for the most part, please at least give me a concept/design nod, would ya? lol. Send me some photos/video too!

 This is also NEW sketch #22 in our “SIXTY SHACK SKETCHES IN SIXTY DAYS” pen-a-thon. Man, this ain’t easy! Even though these sketches are NOT from the new version of “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks”, this drawing spree is leading up to the release of that book- which is already on amazon.com

Click HERE to check it out! 

Thanks to a great year where I’ve also made many new friends in the tiny housing community! Also- Thanks especially to Kent Griswold, Michael Janzen, Alex Pino, Tammy Strobel, and Lloyd Kahn for being so supportive of my work- and to so many others too! 

Oh yeah- Yesterday, at one point “Humble Homes” it was the #4 bestselling carpentry, and how-to/home improvement book in the WORLD! (which royalty-wise means I just made enough money to buy half of a pencil!). Thank you for your support!

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen



THREE more tiny house concept sketches- Humble Homes, Simple Shacks outtakes… Part two!
December 23, 2011, 2:12 pm
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Well, the scanner’s back up and running, but I’ll be up and running soon too, as I have some holiday company arriving any minute now, so perhaps tomorrow I’ll explain the backstory on these NEVER BEFORE POSTED outtakes from the sketch and design sessions leading up to “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks”- the NEW and EXPANDED EDITION. Click here to check out the reviews (From The NY Times, to The Boston Globe, Jay Shafer, Lester Walker, etc)….

And these stand as sketches #19, #20, and #21 in our “SIXTY SHACK SKETCHES IN SIXTY DAYS” series….. all designs and sketches by myself.

“A swamp hut of the future”. Just for fun….
A quick, rough, shantyboat scene/sketch for possible use (among several others I’ve done) for a Shantyboat/Houseboat book by Bryan Lowe of Shantyboatliving.com
This was one of the sketches for the tiny, tiny, tiny island Dustin and I visited (to buy) in Maine (only $3500!- which was sold from under our feet by a snake of a realtor- a guy was a total jerk who couldn’t even lie well). We shot a video (my first flip video ever and THE reason I bought the camera (an impulse buy) on the way) on it, which is posted below. Little would I know how much use that little $170 camera would see!

I still get ticked off when I watch this video- this pond was among the cleanest I’ve ever seen! The plan was to toss the sketch/cabin, seen above, in a tree on the island, after floating it, pre-built, on a platform to the island. We checked some codes, and so on, and this seemed a loop hole so as to be able to build on such a postage-stamp-sized piece of land. It was to be “delivered” and erected in a matter of hours.

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen