Relaxshax's Blog


A Secret Door in A Small Seattle House!
While sifting through, oh, a few hundred photos I hadn’t posted yet, I now have the urge to incorporate a hidden passageway into the cabin we’re all collectively building in North Carolina at our 3-day Tiny House Workshop- seriously, we just may have to do it! The workshop is April 26th-28th….CLICK HERE for more info….

 I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE secret passageways. Perhaps it was infused in me from movies like “The Goonies” when I was a kid, or the TV show “Webster” (if anyone remembers that), but I just can’t resist clicking on links, videos, articles, and tours of homes with secret passages…..

SO…..I was thrilled to come across one face to face while filming episode of my show “Tiny Yellow House” out in Seattle earlier this year (with Christopher Smith, one of the two (with Merete Mueller) behind the much anticipated “Tiny: The Movie“).
     You might have seen my video tour of Hal Colombo’s 68 square foot tiny guest house (complete with a mechanical, garage-door murphy bed!) this past summer, but Hal’s main house itself was actually twice as wild! Sadly, we didn’t have time to film it, but I hope to return at some point- it was just TOO good of a time. The old video is below- and check out this secret Scooby-Doo-like bathroom door. This bookcase is SOLID, and hung on massive hinges, yet it swings with ease!

The big ole hinges are the giveaway, but its really well designed, and the door gives way to an under-the-staircase bathroom.

Hal’s home, overall, is about 600 or so square feet, from what I remember him telling me. As for the guest house, YES,  you can rent it by the night- over on airbnb.com. Hal also plays in a really cool surf/garage rock band called “The Vacant Stairs”.

Funky Junk! I love it! You could spend a few hours in his living room looking around and never unearth, or ask about, all that you wanted to know and see. 
Filming the show, at like 6am (after that hellish flight), BEFORE heading off to speak at the Tumbleweed Tiny House Workshop.

IF YOU MISSED THE VIDEO TOUR….

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen
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"The Darrington Cabin" Mock Ups- A Tiny Guest House/Office….
Here’s another stab at the cabin design we might be tinkering with (well, ACTUALLY BUILDING!) at our April 26th-28th Tiny House Building Workshop in Wilmington, NC. THREE DAYS of building, designing, networking, guest speakers, demos, and MORE! CLICK HERE if you might want to sign up….while we still have space. Its limited to 25 people total. The list of guest speakers is GREAT too- with MORE to come!
Steven Harrell of Tinyhouselistings.com, Kent Griswold of Tinyhouseblog.com, Alex Pino of Tinyhousetalk.com, Laura LaVoie of 120squarefeet.com, AND MORE- they’ll all be there as speakers!

I’ve never really messed around with Google Sketch-up before, just because I haven’t had the chance, so with a little block of time today I decided to mess around a bit, with some off-shoot ideas (and there will be many other to come) for a micro-cabin I’ll eventually be building, that I’ve named “The Darrington” (a combination of “Deek” and “Harrington” (a nod to Kevin Harrington of www.COZYHOMEPLANS.com, who has been so helpful with my videos, and blog.

The cabin is 8′ by 12′, and 10′ tall at its highest point, and what you see here is a mere rough draft.

Not shown is the work desk, toilet, ladder (or steps) to the loft, gutters (by the entrance), and support legs for the flip-up wall/canopy (IF we decide to incorporate it into the build at all).

Again, these sketch-ups are pretty darn rough, as, well, I’ve used the program for about a total of 2 hours and that’s it. I DO see how people can get addicted though, and heck, its a free program! No complaints here.

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen



A Micro Office Makeover- FLOOR STORAGE ("FLOORAGE") for your tiny house
December 15, 2012, 4:50 pm
Filed under: cabins, cloffic, shedworking, small cabin, space efficiency, storage, tiny house, tiny office
UNDER FLOOR STORAGE IN YOUR TINY HOME OR OFFICE:
Well, with 1000 projects going on, a 3 Day NC Tiny House-Building Workshop coming up (April 26th-28th), two kids, two bands, a hosting gig for the DIY Network, another book contract signed/in the works, and well, all the other things that come with life, my micro closet office, or “Cloffice”, had gotten a little messy as of lately…..SO I figured a lil’ makeover was in order. (Note: The rest of the room to the left is clean….)
BEFORE
AFTER
“No, you can’t have my vintage vhs copy of ‘Tremors’!”
In the photo above, the closet makeover is not 100% complete, but its getting there. The new space acts as a little reading/play nook for my kids, which they love- its very fort-like, and if I have to do any computer work while at home, they’re inches behind me, so that I can keep an eye on them.

HOW? TACTICS….

Basically, I utilized the under-stair shelving I had installed (on stairs I also had built a few years ago, the office too…) for storage of books, magazines, and future giveaway items for the blog, AND…..I built what I call “FLOORAGE”. Floorage is the building of a thin, boxed, floor section, ON TOP of an existing floor. Its almost like building a stage, but one that is hollow, and opens up for access and storage within. Mine was made of a few 2by6’s and some left over tongue and groove cedar I had. Slap an Ikea rug and a pillow or two on top of that, and Whammo!- a simple under-stair-office makeover!

TOTAL BUDGET- $45.00
Naturally, some of the items I parted with, or moved elsewhere, but believe it or not, most everything fit in here, AND there’s a little room to spare… The edge of the storage/floorage box also has a nice stained/trim edge now, which isn’t shown in this photo.

I talk about this a lil’ bit in my book “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks”, but will expand on more of these style ideas in the next book I’ve been working on….
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen


Clever Salvage Siding for Sheds, Outhouses, n’ Cabins….
December 14, 2012, 11:32 am
Filed under: fort, outhouse, playhouse, recycled material building, siding, tiny house

Suzanne St. Pierre and Scott’s Paint Can Lid Outhouse Siding…..
Pretty simple…. a la flattened metal-juice can siding, which I’ve tried- it works well!
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Check Out Details on our HANDS-ON, TINY HOUSE BUILDING WORKSHOP in WILMINGTON, NC= April 26th-28th, 2013= CLICK HERE- build a tiny house, guest speakers, demos….



FIVE tiny houses/off-grid cabins in Vermont- VIDEO TOUR

Here’s another video I pieced together recently, showing FIVE cabins/tiny houses/guest huts (one of them a tree house) that I’ve designed and built up in Northern Vermont. Two of them were built as part of a hands-on workshop I had there over the summer. It was a blast, and I’m sure we’ll have another.

Speaking of which, our next tiny house building workshop, where we’ll all build a tiny guest house TOGETHER, will be April 26th-28th, 2013, in Wilmington, NC- a THREE DAY course, loaded with guest speakers, demos, and more! CLICK HERE FOR INFO.

ALSO, THERE ARE JUST A FEW DAYS LEFT to pick up a signed copy of my book “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks”, get some FREEBIES with it, AND have a ONE in TWENTY chance of winner some other AWESOME TINY HOUSE BOOKS as well! CLICK HERE for that.

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen


A marsh-side TREE HOUSE in Scituate, MA
December 8, 2012, 1:21 pm
Filed under: kids fort, playhouse, shelter, tiny house, tree fort, tree house
This particular treehouse is in Scituate, MA- what a spot!

As many of you know, my Relaxshacks.com blog is pretty eclectic and not just about Tiny Houses- not only does tinyhouseblog, tinyhousedesign, and tinyhousetalk (and many others) kick-butt at that in coverage, but, well, I’ve got tiny shelter, house, cabin, fort, and overall-structure A.D.D.- so I can’t help myself. One look at my “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks” book, and you’ll get the idea- lol.
Anyway, I am ESPECIALLY fond of tree houses and tree forts too! So, I couldn’t resist sharing this one, as I continue to take, and search for photos for my upcoming book on the subject (tiny houses, cabins, tree houses, playhouses, and more!). If you have any photos, as always- kidcedar@gmail.com.


PS- after our April 26th-28th Hands-On Tiny House Building, Three Day Workshop, in Wilmington, NC– I just may schedule a tree house building one in MA- we’ll see….one step at a time.CLICK HERE FOR INFO on that workshop….



A-frame Treehouse/Tiny House/Shed Office Part 2
November 30, 2012, 3:10 pm
Filed under: a-frame, shedworking/shed office, tiny house, tree fort, tree house

This is NOT what we’ll be building in Wilmington, NC- April 26th-28th at our HANDS-ON Tiny House Building Workshop, but I WOULD like to build another one of these up on my Vermont Land, perhaps as a future tree house building workshop, where, in groups, we build a guest hut, OR TWO….. we’ll see….

Anyway, here’s another shot of something I’ve been working on….problem is, here in New England, when it gets cold as all “get out”, outdoor work tends to slow to a crawl, or a complete stop- paints and caulks don’t cure, fingers freeze, and windburn (not fun) is always inevitable.
    Again, this is a simple A-frame, but one that was intended as a small art office, and one that could easily be built in a tree, as a tree house, even a hut for guests, as its so light in weight. As for the rest of it, I can’t really show you for awhile, as its not quite done- what you see is only a third of the whole project.

Eventually, alongside the work of FIFTY or so other builders, and designers, this one will be showcased in yet another book I’ve been working on. kidcedar@gmail.com if you’d like to submit your work.

And, with the Christmas/Hannukah/Kwanzaa/Festivus season around the corner…..check out my “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks” book- MADE and PRINTED IN THE USA– I made sure of it when I signed the book deal- and the book cover proudly displays that fact. I’ll soon be selling signed copies, with a bonus gift to each who order one- more on that soon….

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen