How do we do it? How are we content with living in 280-ish sq ft of space - 2 adults, an 8 year old boy and a dog? The truth is, living in a small space comes pretty natural to us. Our first house we rented together was just about 600 sq ft, and when we moved from that house into a 1,200 sq ft house, it just felt entirely too big. The tv was too far away from us on the couch, haha! We genuinely missed the cozy feeling of having less space. The only thing that has changed from we were living in our larger rentals prior really, is that now we just have one space that is an all-in-one rather than multiple rooms with dividing walls. We can see everything that we own just by moving our head right to left. We see each other all the time; we are always together. If at any given time we were to stretch both of our arms out, we would probably hit something. These might all sound crazy to some people, but it's something that are so used to at this point, it doesn't even cross our minds. This is just the way we live now; this is our home. Although living in a small space is something that comes easy to us, there are a few tips that we have picked up along the way that definitely help to make tiny living less chaotic and more enjoyable.
This one might be obvious, but it is the thing that has the most impact - be organized. If you aren't naturally an organized person (like me), strive to become one. Everything you have needs a home, and every time you use something, you need to put it away. If even a few things are left out throughout the day, it feels as if the whole house is cluttered and a mess. We basically live in one hallway, its not like you can just walk around things left on the floor or just use counter space that doesn't have stuff one it. If something is on the counter, theres no more counter. Trying to remain organized and picking things up as we go are daily tasks for us, but tasks that make life better in our tiny home.
Another thing that helps us preserve a state of minimalist living is just not having many things. By things, I mean clothes, nic-nacs, jewelry, shoes - things that we don't need. We have everything that we need and also everything that we want, and (almost) nothing that we don't need. I still find myself occasionally getting rid of a few articles of clothing that I haven't worn in a mont or two, and it legitimately feels good to have more space in the bin that I store my clothes rather than stuffing it as tight as possible. We all minimized all of our possessions, even David. He has one bin that holds all of his toys. It is crazy to think that he once had an entire bedroom to himself filled with all sorts of toys and clothes and shoes, etc.
Let's talk about multi-purpose furniture real quick. We have two couches in our home and they both lift up to have storage underneath. Our desk is also our dining table - it doesn't transform, but we just use it both for working and work eating. Our bed sits on top of two 8-bin storage cubicles from IKEA, which allows for the space in between to serve as what we have dubbed 'the doggy cave'. It's a little quiet place for our dog to sleep and hide if he is feeling nervous or shy. We crafted all of this furniture with ingenuity and the mindset of utilizing every opportunity to maximize space in our tiny home. With all of the hidden storage that we have, mostly everything fits into their designated places with plenty of room, we aren't packed full.
We feel content in our tiny home. It feels more like home to us than any other house we have lived in prior. I think a big part of it is because we did such an extensive renovation and changed just about everything in here to make it our own. Everything is custom made to fit our needs and our way of life. It's a perfect situation for us, and I couldn't imagine life being any different than it is right now.