Since 1997, Jay Shafer has lived in a 96-square-foot house in Sebastopol that is smaller than some people’s closets. You can see it by clicking here. The house to the left and below is another small house, dubbed “Little Prefab on the Prairie.”
Jay is a co-founder of the Small House Society, which is part of a small-house movement fueled by concerns about the toll big lifestyles have on the planet.
Jay showed off his home on The Oprah Winfrey Show, and was quoted in an Incredible Shrinking Houses in the Christian Science Monitor. The New York Times wrote not long ago about the small-house movement. And, of course, Sarah Susanka has been writing about the Not So Big House for years.
Small houses need not be shacks. They can have bamboo floors and stainless steel counters. I love studying the floor plans to see how I could make it work for myself. My 105-pound Newfoundland mix would be a problem. And I wonder about clothes washing; I would hope Laundromats are not in my future.
Upcoming small-house design workshop: Aug. 17 to 19 in Sonoma County. Cost: $499.
(Photos: Wee Houses)