joshua tree workshop 2018

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

This GORGEOUS houseboat was built on a 1940s TRASH BARGE!

Yes, you read that right, the entire hull of this airbnb houseboat rental once was a trash barge for the Seattle area. Luckily it has now not only been cleaned up, but transformed into a rather elegant and fun "floating tiny house"! This is the SECOND houseboat I've rented in Seattle's Lake Union (loved them both), and the first one was featured in a past video, AND in my third book "MicroLiving"- shown/linked down below....

 Also, if you want to build a cabin with us, camp out, hear from guest speakers, see live demos, and       MORE!- don't miss our May 1-3, 2020 Tiny House Building Workshop in Joshua Tree, CA

And the other houseboat...

                             Deek's Book "Micro Living
                                             CLICK HERE

Sunday, January 12, 2020

LIVE Tiny House Building (with us), Ferrocement, Adobe, and more! Join us!

     You might know by now (you might not), that we're heading back to the desert right outside Joshua Tree, CA to work on yet another cool cabin- one that you'll be building with us as we teach you the ropes. We're keeping this hands on workshop small, and its going to be fun as heck- as we've added MORE demos this time around! Three days of awesomeness! Great for the 101 of tiny house building, networking, and learning many alternative practices in trade- ESPECIALLY when it comes to salvage, reuse, and budget building!

May 1-3, 2020. ALL SKILL levels welcome (and appropriate)- even if you've NEVER built before.

Here's more on it.

Hosted by Deek and Dustin Diedricksen (former hosts/designers of the HGTV tv show "Tiny House Builders")

-You can camp out for free- PLENTY OF SPACE on our 5 acre spread
-You can bring your RV or camper- no fee
-You can bring your (well behaved) pet
-We're in a cool remote area, but a MERE 2 miles from hotels, restaurants, chains, and more....

And if you missed our recent MEGA TREE HOUSE VIDEO.... here goes....

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Check out this Dual Shipping Container Tiny House Set Up...

Well, we are going to have yet another Joshua Tree/Twentynine Palms Tiny House Building Workshop in May (Hosted by The Diedricksen Brothers- former hosts of HGTV's "Tiny House Builders"), and this might be one of the set-ups (among who knows what else) that you can take a look at.

We also will all be building a small cabin together- regardless of your skill level. Even if you've NEVER built before, this workshop will work with you/teach you- that's the whole point.

Also- if you're interested in signing up/want more info?- hit the banner link a little ways above this article.

As for the shipping container house, as you check out this video, here are a few quick pros/cons I immediately thought of in regards to a dual (yet split) shipping container home arrangement.

-Separate living/working spaces for privacy/one's own space if living with another
-The ability to transport these to other locations as they act as two individual units on trailers.
-The two units, by being separated, create an outdoor living space (a large 16' deck in this case).

-Heating- depending on your systems, you might need two individual units.
-Heat loss by wind (more exposed surfaces as opposed to one larger "block-like unit")
-Each container is only a maximum of 8' wide, while the span could be larger inside if they were joined.

And there are plenty of other pros and cons I'm sure....


Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Teenage Woman builds her own Getaway Tiny House

Meet Sarah McClellan, who while in high school decided to build her very own tiny house getaway in the woods of Ohio. This "tree house" (built in and around several trees) cost under $2000 to construct, and is heated, insulated, has a mini kitchen space, AND a second floor bedroom. Check it out in this tour, as well as more from her father Chris McClellan (aka "Uncle Mud") a world-renown mud/cob/earth building teacher- information on his home building techniques (and beyond) can be found at 

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Couple lives in only 50 Square Feet FULL TIME! A tiny house story.

Having attended several tiny house festivals for inspiration, and one of our early hands-on tiny house building workshops (VT's "Tiny House Summer Camp") Emily and Dan Moore set upon designing, building, and eventually making the transition towards living tiny. REALLY tiny. Check out this youtube tour of their cabin on wheels (very vardo/gypsy wagon-like) when they visited my home in the Boston, MA area.

This tiny dwelling, while sparse and incredibly small (especially for a couple) DOES have solutions to their everyday needs, be it showering, going to the bathroom, or cooking. Like many other tiny home owners, the plan on living a transient life (working from the road) and following (or escaping) the weather when need be.

AND remember, early sign-ups for 2020's "Tiny House Summer Camp 8" in Vermont are up and running. You can click on the large banner on the top of this website on every page to bring you to a page with more details.


Tuesday, October 8, 2019

THE WORST! This TINY HOUSE will probably kill you.

Talked to/warned the owners, and more- don't worry- but here's THE VERY WORST TINY HOUSE I've EVER seen- and yes, we spent the night in it. Suffice to say, we didn't sleep all that well.

Check out this video and if you head over to the true link/video on youtube, be sure to enter a comment or two on anything we might have missed. There are SO MANY things done incorrectly here- its just scary!

I have NEVER seen such a poorly built structure. This tiny house video stands as a great lesson in terms of "WHAT NOT TO DO" when building your cabin or small home.

ABSOLUTELY FRIGHTENING. But this tour might be a solid learning tool for some of you.


PS- if you want to learn to do things the right way- we already have a pre-sign up for next year's "Tiny House Summer Camp 8" in Vermont- with live building, camping, live demos, guest speakers, and more!

Hit the banner above (top of the site) for more....


Tuesday, October 1, 2019

This $1600 A-frame Tiny House- Featured in Sunset Magazine

"The Little A That Could" as I'm now calling it, has done it again. This time, its through a feature in Sunset Magazine- a national publication!
This particular article showcased the A-frame weekender-cabin (which can be built for as little as $700!) that is below.
Thanks to Marco Tovar for the heads up and hard work!

I designed this little cabin plan set several years ago and it has really taken off, and so many of these have now been built around the US.

If you are interested in plans, we sell them HERE 

Saturday, July 6, 2019

TINY HOUSE SUMMER CAMP 7! Yes, its happening!

Camping, building (actual building!), guest speakers, and more!

Note: JUST ADDED (and see more below)- Cleveland OH's "Uncle Mudd" to lead Cobb/Mud/Earth building demos- all hands-on. He'll be offering side classes for those interested- all included with your registration! 

"Tiny House Summer Camp"- As featured in the NY Times, NPR, Boston Globe, and

If you've missed out the other years when it sold out- here is your chance! 

Hosted by Deek and Dustin Diedricksen (authors, builders, former hosts of HGTV's "Tiny House Builders")

Where? Orleans, Vermont. 
September 20-22nd (Fri-Sun)- if you can't make Friday we will get you caught up with private instruction. 

This is for ALL skill levels (or for those that have ZERO skills- we'll help you gain some!)

Sign up now before its too late. We'll add more info to this post as we add speakers. (we have SO many already). 

We will ALL be building a backwoods tiny house this year. ACTUALLY building one- not talking about it or looking at powerpoint presentations. 

We have plenty of space for free camping too!
We limit the workshop to 22 students. 

SO many guest builders/hosts!

Chris Strathy- aka "The Capable Carpenter"-Tiny House Builder and Youtube Host from NC

Martin Skrelunas- Tiny House Builder and CT Architect

Palo "The Mad Scientist" Coleman- Repurposing Pro

Chris Schapdick- NJ Tiny House Builder and Author 

Jim Shippey- Builder from HGTV's "Tiny House Builders" Show

Matt Gabriel (back by popular demand)- to lead fun side classes on wilderness survival, backwoods building, and more! Matt is the host of the youtube channel "Animal Man Survivor"

We're working on adding some women too- we've always had some in the past on our teaching roster. 

And more!!! 

Any questions-

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

From Pro Snowboarder to Tiny House VAN CONVERSION builder!

Meet NC's JJ Catlett.
Having worked professionally in the snowboarding industry for years, JJ decided that a move into the world of tiny housing was to be his next move and he has now been working solo on van dwellings (or van conversions) for the past couple of years. More specifically his specialty is in the world of van conversion builds that are fully off grid.
He calls his custom creations "Adventure Mobiles", and you can find out MUCH more about them and his process in this video tour and interview here.

Be sure to subscribe to us and check out our other SIX HUNDRED videos at:

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Joshua Tree/29 Palms- DIY-Salvage-Tiny House-Building Workshop in MAY! Hands-on!

UPDATE- we just ALSO added a VAN DWELLING conversion project to this workshop!!!! 

(above) The vibe/scene of past workshops....

As for California....We loved it so much out there that we bought a 5 acre chunk of land, and we're going back for an intimate, yet awesome workshop! JUST added too- Steven Harrell of Tiny House Listings to talk solar and build with us, and Chris Strathy (from NC- aka "The Capable Carpenter"- a custom tiny house builder).

SIGN UP HERE- (Same info as you see below, but its the actual link to register, etc)


May 4th and 5th, 2019 (Sat and Sun)- with a third day work trade evening if you'd like... (Friday- some MORE building, a talk, a meal...)
Friday evening will have an on-site salvage competition too for the best item found AND the best repurposing idea. 

Note- this workshop has an early-bird discount of $60     if you sign up before April 7th! (price will be $299 instead of $359)
"Deek's Mad-Max-Like Weird Desert Camp Out DIY Thing"
(with a lot of tiny house focus/builders)
(For tiny house fans, salvage nerds, n' thrifty folks that love building stuff) 
This is yet Another Diedricksen Brothers Workshop (always HANDS-ON building and live demos)- This is their NINTH YEAR hosting workshops in the US and beyond! I'm gonna be blunt here too- if its not fun, we're just not interested, so we want to show you a good time while you also learn a heck of a lot. But you don't know us personally, so you'll just have to take our word on that. 

A little getaway cabin/pod we built last time with novices as a framing exercise (29 Palms, CA)

This workshop is "out there n' funky"- so maybe its not right for you. Perhaps you'd rather be at home collecting stamps, not taking chances, and being, well, lame. But if you want to hang out with us on a bizarre patch of desert land (5 acres) that we own, while slowly transforming it into something cool, while eating tacos, drinking beer/cocktails by campfire, seeing live demos, asking questions, building things, and so much more- than this is for you. 
If any of that scared you away- well, we just weeded you out. No love lost/no harm done. 
The land is rough, its a mess (for now- we'll change that!), but you're gonna be in great company and learn a lot. Don't worry, its not in the middle of nowhere, and you can drive right up to the site and park on it. 
This is also going to be one of the smallest and most intimate workshops we do, as we don't want this being a "cattle call" where you won't end up getting individual attention- you WILL. We have a host/teacher for every 4 students. You WILL NOT find that- EVER- with any other workshop! 
Saguaro Cactus- Downtown Joshua Tree, CA
Ideally, we're thinking no more than 12-14 students for this workshop. Any more becomes more a "mob", than an easy-to-manage, fun, group that will get plenty of one on one QnA and build-contact time. 
This will be two days long- with the invite for you to come an evening early (3rd day) on work-study trade to help us set-up (and even build a little)- A "Tacos, beer, and fire evening" for your help. More on that lower below. 
Basically- the quick info first...
-Again, Its two days, hosted by former HGTV host ("Tiny House Builders") Derek "Deek" Diedricksen with Steven Harrell (youtube host/builder for "Tiny House Listings"), and more.... 
-Cost is $299 per person BEFORE APRIL 1st. After April 1st it resumes the regular price of $359.00- so don't snooze! 
-We DO have camping options (space) if you'd like- nothing glamorous, but its merely offered for those that want to rough it and save some money. There is no running water or power- its a desert site, but VERY accessible and close enough to many stores, restaurants, and more. Each day you need to bring a lunch, and we'll disperse early enough for you to get a late dinner (or you can bring whatever). We're not caterers and people's diets are so varied that trying to feed everyone has been a nightmare in the past. 
-Its Sat and Sunday- 10am to 9pm each day. You CAN arrive Friday late afternoon too (details to follow) if you'd like, as part of the work-trade hangout (we WILL put you to work clearing/readying the land- but we'll provide the after-work beverages, a ton of tacos, and we can all hang by a fire (you'll need gloves and good work boots). Plan on working about 3-4 hours or so before we break (4pm to 7/8 pm). We'll then all hang out to hit a local pub to hang out together. 
"Deek, I have no building experience- is this going to be right for me?"
YES, we'll have people of all skills levels, but this is more geared to people like you, and people that want to learn some outside-the-box techniques. We have so many cool things we'll be doing and taking about. 
Every workshop is different. The focus ultimately aims towards cabins, tiny houses, and budget building via small skill projects. While the various things we'll undertake serve as microcosms of many of the things you'll need to know, we'll also dabble with some desert-related approaches, and more. We want you to have FUN, and to learn, and to learn by DOING. 
We will not build a tiny house- there is no way that is possible in 2 days. This workshop is more DIY oriented with skill building projects, talks, QnAs by campfire, framing demos, and through you working alongside us on a few things. We want to give you the know-how and the confidence to tackle a variety of projects. More below...
What if I need to cancel? Please make sure your schedule is free before signing up. There is no refund on this once you have signed up (I even put that in bold font (and this too) so you can't say "I didn't know- I didn't see it") but we WILL give you a credit to ANY future workshop we do (its your job to keep tabs on when we next have them and to contact us to use your credit). 
Again, just check your schedule before you sign up and there will be not problems. This will be fun- we'd love to have you, hang out with you, and build with you! 
Salvage and budget building with the infusion of creativity is our forte too, so there will be a healthy dose of that. 
Things we'll cover in two days:
Passive heating and cooling techniques- desert vs. other locales
Solar Cooking
Roofing and siding methods
Site selection and prep in your building projects 
Solar energy talk/panel w/Steven Harrell
Pouring concrete footings and cabin foundation approaches (piers, helical pilings...)
Pallet building and deconstruction- dos/don'ts 
Salvage selection and techniques- talk with Deek Diedricksen by bonfire
Building desert wind walls
Framing 101, and beyond- Live building 
What NOT to do in a tiny house build…. Deek talk and illustrated demo 
Learn to make adobe blocks
Solar Still Constuction and use
Other possibilities: FIELD TRIP to Noah Purefoy Museum- a haven of WEIRD, WEIRD salvage. 
Building a tiny house on a trailer- and other info-loaded DIY tales w/Chris Strathy (aka "The Capable Carpenter")
Tools of the trade- selection, need, and what is "overrated"
 ANY questions-
If you'd like to be a sponsor for this workshop- in the videos (youtube), on our flyers, in our posts, on our website and more- email the same address above. 
-Deek Diedricksen