joshua tree workshop 2018

Monday, February 28, 2011

A photo of a photo guy taking photos, during a photo shoot for The NY Times on Tiny Houses

Um....title-wise, I just confused myself. Anyhow, when Erik Jacobs (the guy was incredible) of The New York Times came out to shoot four of my little cabins here in Massachusetts for an article titled "The $200 Microhouse (Joyce Wadler), I decide to turn the photo session on HIM, to make him sweat a lil'. No, Erik was cool with me doing this and I shot some video too- as its not everyday that the NY Times is prowlin' in your frontyard, snappin' pictures, as the neighbors look on wondering what the hell is happening....

 What you can't see in this shot are several tripod light/flash rigs set-up throughout my front yard for some mini CSI forensics/crime scene...

-Derek "Deek" Diedricksen

Also, just got word that MAKE Magazine wants us to shoot a new series of videos for them soon....and oh yes, we'll have some real far out, funky, and flobaglooted (yeah, just made that up) stuff in store for ya!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Tiny art of Leah Giberson of tiny/small houses, campers, rvs, and trailer homes

Many of you know that any of the micro-shelters and cabins I build (and usually film for our "Tiny Yellow House" TV show on youtube (Click HERE)), end up being filled with cool, vibrant, funky, and/or weird paintings and pieces of art.
File Leah Giberson's work under "Bad-ass".
She mainly, in the online gallery, focuses on the suburban world, rvs, campers, tear drop trailers, and lawn furniture- all of which she does in a very stylized/sharp manner. I think you'll really enjoy her work...

She's from the Boston area- offers signed prints of her micro-subject art pieces very reasonably, and is incredibly talented. Go check out her indie Etsy shop HERE

-Derek "Deek" Diedricksen

Saturday, February 26, 2011

A video yappin' about our 2011 Tiny Shelter/House Building workshop in New England

First, as we've posted many new videos/Tiny Yellow House TV episodes recently- please check out our channel and new vids here (and we could ALWAYS use sponsors/supports to keep this moving towards bigger and better filming/subjectmatter-projects- Kid cedar at gmail dot com). Here's a link to ALL the videos....

AND....'Thought I'd toss this up (above), as we just posted it on youtube- as so many people keep asking "What does your workshop entail/what guests will be there?". Well, in ONE single 14 hour workshop, in one day, we're going to attempt to cover a pretty insane amount of material, and hands-on experiences- with a very solid roster of guest speakers and demonstrators. Its all going down July 9th, 2011. The video pretty much explains ALL.
     And thanks to all who checked out my feature in the Home And Garden section of The New York Times/NY Times Newspaper- I appreciate the kind words and support. Joyce Wadler did a great job with the article. For those who didn't see it, the link (with info on my mini shetlers/micro cabins/house The Gypsy Junker, The Hickshaw, and The Boxy Lady) are all right here....

I was thrilled to also find that The Seattle Times,,,, Time Magazine's Blog, and so many more also carried the story as well!

Continual thanks to Kent Griswold too- of who has been incredibly supportive from the start- same with Michael Janzen of two great guys, who mean very well- and kick-ass at what they do. Alex Pino too- but I yack about him a bunch in the video above- so stop reading my blather and go watch it!

-Derek "Deek" Diedricksen

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The New York Times- and A WHOLE LOTTA "SCHTUFF" GOING ON with our show/future projects

Note: This is DAY ONE of our new site locale- if any probs- you can still check out all the old posts, and order the book at the OLD SITE/BLOG... we'll slowly be moving hundreds of our posts to this new blog spot.

Our mini-cabins are now for sale (The Hickshaw, The Boxy Lady, and The Gypsy Junker)- scroll wayyyy down for info...and the "why"....(mainly we wanna build more NEW things to film, blow up, push off cliffs, and we're running out of space to store these lil' classics). Don't worry, if they sell, we will have more/other stuff to showcase to attendees at our 2011 Hands-On Tiny Shelter/House Workshop in MA....


To any new readers, esp. those coming from The New York Times feature, out today (Thurs)- WELCOME. And for ALL, here are MANY informational updates on our tiny house videos, micro-shelters, cabins, and my book (which you can order from the side column). Please do- and please be patient if you order one- they're ALL hand assembled- and I am but one guy, (in his pajamas, with a six-pack of PBR, making lots of post office trips when I can (not in my pajamas)).

Aside from that there are TONS of things going on....and I posted some of our archived videos in the midst of all this for some of you to check out. Two of what I feel are the better/more fun, ones from our past work/collection.

TINY YELLOW HOUSE #1- "THE HICKSHAW" CABIN- the original "goof" episode that spawned the rest of what we've done... 

First off, we're hoping to perhaps take the "Tiny Yellow House" TV show on the road at some point and film some more substantial cabins, homes, and treehouses- basically, showcasing the work of others alongside our own. Seattle would be a place we'd love to hit, but funding would be needed if we're to get the crew traveling for a multi-episode project. Several New England locales are also in the planning stages/an option- some CRAZY places/houses all in all! As always, if you'd like to reach a TON of people, we're looking for sponsors/backers (ad placement), AND if you'd simply like to make a donation and get your name in a future-episode (thanks you's)- is our donation account. Heck, any huge donations and we might put YOU in the episode...seriously- you'd have to cover travel to meet us though....

But enough blather....well, no, here's some more.....

 We're still hard at work on some micro-treehome/homeless shelter prototypes (photo above- and check the link for more)....Much more is to come on our $100 multi-faceted "GottaGiddaWay" shelter- which will be built to a larger scale down the road.....this will be shot for an episode for us, or Make Magazine eventually too.... HERE are some more photos of this TINY shelter.

AND....myself and Bill Bracken, and the band I'm in-Age Against The Machine-are going back into the studio soon (yes, the show's music is US too) to work on some more material for TYH. Recently-ish, Bill and I wrote a song that Gary Cherone- Frontman for Extreme/Van Halen/Tribe Of Judah sang on.... you can check it out HERE/download it for $0.99. If we get enough downloads, we can then afford half a Clark Bar! A certain professional sports team might be using this song SOON too...we'll see....

Otherwise, thanks for stoppin' in....more to come, each and every day....

Oh yeah, the three micro-cabins in my yard are for sale- all proceeds will go towards shooting and building mini-frankensteinic shacks for our shows.....I've tweaked a few things on them more recently/put some new work into them too...
The Hickshaw- $1500
The Boxy Lady- $2000
The Gypsy Junker- $3000
The Fold Down Fort- From Make Magazine/TYH Episode- $600.00
     Kid Cedar At Gmail Dot Com for inquiries....

-Derek "Deek" Diedricksen

Ok one more, I lied....

The $200 microhouse/microhome in the New York Times newspaper by joyce wadler- tiny houses, shacks, cabins, forts, homes, cottages......
     A HOUSE tour is the highlight of a visit with a proud homeowner, but when one drops in to see Derek Diedricksen, who makes playful micro-shelters out of junk, it is less so. Possibly because the temperature up here on a cold winter day is less so, possibly because his square footage is less so.
At about 24 square feet, the Gypsy Junker, made primarily out of shipping pallets, castoff storm windows and a neighbor’s discarded kitchen cabinets, is the largest of Mr. Diedricksen’s backyard structures. The Hickshaw, a sleeper built on a rolling cedar lounge chair (or as Mr. Diedricksen calls it, “a rickshaw for hicks”), is considerably smaller, at 2 1/2 feet wide by 6 1/2 feet deep. The Boxy Lady, two cubes on a long pallet, is the smallest: 4 feet tall at its highest point.
For ingenuity, thrift and charm, Mr. Diedricksen’s tiny structures are hard to beat. Made of scavenged materials, they cost on average less than $200 to build. They often have transparent roofing, which allows a fine view of the treetops, particularly in the smallest ones, where the most comfortable position is supine. They have loads of imaginative and decorative details: a porthole-like window salvaged from a front-loading washing machine, a flip-down metal counter taken from the same deceased washer. Mr. Diedricksen hates to throw anything away.
Still, the structures are neither warm nor commodious, and the reporter’s note-taking is hampered by blowing on her hands. It is so cold, in fact, that in deference to the reader, whose nose is no doubt starting to run, we shall go indoors for a spell, that one might consider Mr. Diedricksen’s accomplishments in comfort.
They are many. There is his self-published graphic instruction book, “Humble Homes Simple Shacks Cozy Cottages Ramshackle Retreats Funky Forts,” the first edition of which was “hand-assembled” and “locally printed” (in his living room); having sold 1,500 copies, it will be reissued by the Lyons Press next year. There is his YouTube series, “Tiny Yellow House,” which is shot whenever his brother-in-law, a videographer, has some free time, most recently in the auto-body shop of a fan because, as Mr. Diedricksen notes, when it is 10 degrees you don’t want to film outside.
Mr. Diedricksen makes a living doing carpentry and spends a lot of time as Mr. Mom to his two young children, but he has also been a comic book writer, a D.J. and a home inspector, and is a drummer in a Rage Against the Machine tribute band called Age Against the Machine. (The World Wrestling Entertainment theme song for the wrestler Jack Swagger, “Get on Your Knees”? His band wrote that.) Even the little structures he makes, with their multiple uses — fort-guest bedroom-festival sleeper-homeless shelter — are tough to categorize.
It’s hard to figure out how to describe him, Mr. Diedricksen is told.
“One reviewer called me ‘a mad scientist with too much lumber on his hands,’ ” Mr. Diedricksen says. “Another one called it, ‘This Old House Meets Wayne’s World.’ ”
That may be because of the “Harold and Kumar”-esque, moldy sleeping-bag vibe of the “Tiny Yellow House” series, one episode of which includes Mr. Diedricksen’s real-life neighbor yelling, “Diedricksen, when you gonna clean this mess up?”
Or because of Mr. Diedricksen’s ponytail, which he has since cut. Or because of the episode that ends with him picking his teeth for the camera. “Pizza mouth?” he asks.
One should also know that Mr. Diedricksen, 33, graduated from Northeastern University summa cum laude.
Is Mr. Diedricksen committed to building only tiny structures?
“I have only so much yard space and my wife is only so tolerant,” he says.
Mr. Diedricksen’s wife, Elizabeth, is a physical therapist. They live with their children and a large dog in a 950-square-foot house about 10 miles south of Boston, which they bought in 2002 for $190,000 — a fixer-upper, of course.
Stop by to visit with Mr. Diedricksen, and you’ll have to wait till the kids take their naps to talk. Having a tiny-house enthusiast for a dad would seem to be a great thing: Mr. Diedricksen made what looks like a large painting in the living room, but which can be pulled down to sprout orange flaps: an instant kid-size tent.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

“The Goddagidda-way” micro-shelter (aka “The Homeless Hut”)

"The Goddagidda Way" designed and built by Derek "Deek" Diedricksen (a micro homeless shelter, pre-fab treehouse/treefort, and/or indoor escape cube all-in-one)
Here are a few updated pictures of what I’ve now named “The Goddagidda-Way“- a mini/micro shelter designed as a tiny, EASY-to build escape cube (indoors or out), and/or a super-affordable short-term shelter for the homeless or for hikers/travelers, etc. Total cost: Approx. $100/$110.00.
Its a mere 16 square feet inside, but “roomier” than you might think, for something mainly built our of two sheets of plywood.
This also could be used for many other things (my intent)- for example, toss this lightweight structure into a platform in a tree- and voila, you have one of the simpler, cheaper, treeforts/treehouses you’ll ever come by (ie- down the road we’ll do so, and this will become the “head” of “The Tree-Rex Treehouse”). The beauty of this little shelter is that it can be built in well under a day, by someone with very little building experience.
Build it indoors, for those privacy-challenged, tiny house dwellers out there, and you have a little cozy nook in which to read a book, or work from your laptop.
Much more to come- and we’re eventually going to shoot this little structure, so as to show you how to build it yourself. (Note: The stainedglass artwork was donated by Satialee (her ebay shop name)- Real name: Stephanie Atlee. You can check out her work HERE.
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Our Family Rental Cottage (Small, not tiny) in Madison, CT

This ISN’T an episode of “Tiny Yellow House” but I thought it fitting enough to put up on my youtube channel. I shot this last summer (I have literally 2o or more unedited mini-episodes on micro-houses, building, and more, that are sitting around) and wanted to get this up for this summer’s rental season. As I explain in the video, this little Cape Cod Style house of ours- just under 1000 square feet, with three bedrooms- has been in our family for three generations. We’re now forced to rent it out quite a bit these days just to make the tax payments in this GORGEOUS, and historical, but very pricey, Connecticut seaside town. If anyone is ever interested in renting, etc- you can contact me at kid cedar at gmail dot com, and I’ll put you in touch with my father. The place is walking distance to two restaurants and bars, and to downtown as well. The beach is literally 400 feet away too- you can blue crab right off the property, if you’re so daring as to trek through the marsh, and the golf course is 150 feet away- so you can sit back and heckle lousy golfers all day til your heart’s content! (no, please don’t).
UPDATE- here’s a link for more photos, info, rates, a shot of the beach, etc… CLICK HERE
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Our NEW Make Magazine “How-To” video- Pallet-Wood Deck Chairs….and more…

     First- we have our Jay Shafer/Tiny Tumbleweed House vid out n’ running NOW- I’ll post it pretty soon (and check for it- possibly tomorrow)….
ALSO…. July 11th OUR 2011 Hands-On, Tiny Shelter/Tiny House Workshop is gonna be kick-butt- and selling out fast! We’ll have a narrative/photo video on what will be going on soon (One 14 hour day- with MANY guests and demonstrations- WITH some building!) up on our RelaxshacksDOTcom youtube channel. In the meantime, info can be found HERE. $195 for the day, meals included, free books/materials- and guest segments/demos from Alex Pino, Mimi Zeiger, and Dustin Diedricksen.
AND- here’s our brand new video for Make Magazine- its received over 12,000 views in just one day now, which doesn’t suck, so THANK YOU guys for all your support! More on the way….
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

A Treeless Treehouse- well, just kinda a tiny stilt/polehouse I suppose….

Check this one out-very cool, and rather nice looking, while still being simple and boxy in its approach….”A Treeless Treehouse” from the shedworking site.
NOTE- in the next day or so we’ll be changing over our site to a new address…. which will STILL be accessed by
If you’re into treehomes- we just might be building a tiny pre-fab one at our 2011 Hands-On, Tiny Shelter/House Building Workshop- July 9th- a full 14 hour days with many guest speakers, demonstrations, free books/materials, and more…. $195 a full day- spots are going FAST! Email me at kid cedar at gmail dot com for more info/to register. A video on youtube will be coming soon, mentioning all the workshop details and features, or you can click HERE for a listed update….
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

A new (well, TWO) video- one “Tiny Yellow House” with Jay Shafer of, one NOT…

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Two tiny houses from Anytown, USA (well, MA, technically)

A tiny house in Stoughton, MA- photo by Derek "Deek" Diedricksen
I try to keep in the habit of carrying a digital camera with me when I can (and when I can remember to), and here’s two resulting shots I snapped of small houses, just the other day here in Massachusetts (my own town)….
Nothing fancy, but these little houses are certainly interesting/nice in their own right- although they could use quite a bit of work…
Photo by Derek "Deek" Diedricksen

Thursday, February 17, 2011

My Cabin “The Hickshaw” wins BEST DESIGN AWARD 2010 from Shedworking (UK)

(from our old site archives)
Wow….a damn pleasant surprise….especially since the UK site of author Alex Johnson features some incredible designs, sheds, builders, and overall concepts…..but my lil’ shed/single sleeper/greenhouse/sauna/ice-fishin’ shack combo “The Hickshaw” won The “BEST DESIGN” Shedworking award of the year. Crazy….esp as its made out of well, “trash”- almost all throwaway-materials.

An ultra-cool shed/structure from Alex's Shedworking Blog...(a grain bin and two feed troughs?)
For those who have no ideas what I’m talking about structure-wise, its this goofy lil’ thing. I had a blast building it and never even intended to get so into online videos and vlogging, until we shot a joke-episode on this tiny cabin/shelter, and well, things kinda exploded….

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

WBZ/CBS Boston News- On Tiny/Small Houses in Massachusetts….with The Diedricksen Brothers…

WBZ/CBS Boston News- On Tiny/Small Houses in Massachusetts….with The Diedricksen Brothers
(from our old site archives)
First, for all your newcomers to the site (welcome!)- here’s one of our latest editions of Tiny Yellow House TV (where we’re always in need of sponsors!-
AND Since MANY have emailed and asked about my book (shown in the WBZ/CBS TV Broadcast, you can order it (while I still have copies) by clicking on the lefthand book icon). Thanks!
RE: and Tiny MA Homes on CBS NEWS- AND our Tiny House/Shelter Building workshop for 2011….
     Tonight (or last night, depending on when you read this) WBZ, the CBS affiliate out of Boston, MA ran a story on tiny/small houses, as a means and lifestyle towards living on less in tough economic times. It was based on a shoot, and interviews, at both my house (they call it “tiny”- but its not- more so “small/modest”) and at Dustin and Dawn Diedricksen’s (yes, my brother- same state).
Dustin’s house  is where we’ll be hosting (outdoors AND in) our Tiny House/Shelter Building Workshop 2011 here in Massachusetts (Scituate)- date tba. It’ll be a small group overall (15 or so people tops), and VERY eclectic with TONS involved/planned….email me at if interested….and we’ll keep you updated.
AS for WBZ News (and thank you to Ken Tucci and crew!) You can check out the story/transcript here (and more video):
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen
Part of a teaser shot of the news segment for WBZ- taken from the stairs to Dustin and Dawn's loft

New Treehouse/Tiny Vacacation/Shelter Base/House.....

Archives from the old site....
"The Beak (2)" Treehouse by Derek "Deek" Diedricksen- (it'll perhaps be in my 2nd upcoming tiny house/structure book- or 3rd- who knows...)
And…Here’s another sketch I did the other night of a VERY SIMPLE treehouse/tree-cabin idea- only 4′ by 8′- that could sleep one or two people for vacation-weekends/hunting/writing/snoozing/meditating/sketching (MY intent- a micro-office in a tree (again, a “Troffice”). The sketch shown gives the base-smallest size at which it could be affordably and quickly built- utilizing only 3-4 sheets of stock-size 3/4″ plywood. Naturally other wood is involved, but most of which is small sized lumber that could easily be found/salvaged over time, or bought inexpensively. Its a simple enough project in that it could be built, and then hoisted into a tree in a single day, and could serve as a means to help those not-so-carpentry oriented, to try their hand at several skills, approaches, and the usage of many tools. Its kinda funky/weird too- as opposed to building a boxier shed-like house- not that I have any prob with those (I have built many…).
BUT THIS IS RIDICULOUS- ITS TOO DAMN SMALL (you might be thinking)! Well, width and height-wise, a structure like this could certainly be mathematically expanded upon to serve one’s needs. Other changes, such as a support post, to carry the weight of a larger version of this, could very simply be incorporated too.
This is another one of the quick-to-build ideas we could try at our 2011 Tiny Shelter Building Workshop this summer (ONE of the projects/topics of MANY, that we’d be covering and demonstrating). We’ll have many more proposed group project ideas forthcoming too- and even a CONTEST on simple structures soon as well- with some guest/judges. To those interested in perhaps attending- please leave a comment and I’ll get you more info…
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen
For those treehouse/treehome nuts out there, or those just stumbling on this blog- be sure to check out my book (left hand column to order), or any of the works from David and Jeanie Stiles, and Pete/Peter Nelson of The Treehouse Workshop Inc. (who reviewed my own book VERY favorably- thanks Pete!)

The Micro Eco Second Home (M.E.S.H.) and our NEW Facebook group….

First off- I just FINALLY created a facebook tiny housing, group- please join up HERE – I’ll be posting our site links/material/photos there- AND more…
ALSO…I just got the advance copy of Mimi Zeiger’s “Micro-Green” in the mail- which is friggin’ fantastic (MUCH, MUCH more on that soon)- but here’s a photo (MANY better ones to come) of the “M.E.S.H.”- a mobile, plastic-roofed, 6 sleeper structure- EASY to build. I love the simple design, and amenities (toilet/water, etc) could certainly be added to this little getaway- although you might not opt for the see-through walls in this case…
AGAIN- more to come…off to shoot some more videos today too…
One on our 2011 Hands-On, Tiny Shelter/House Building Workshop- being held in MA- July 9th- kidcedar at gmail dot com for more info or to reserve a spot

100 Tiny Homes/Houses- An Art/Painting Exhibit

Tiny House Art by Kate Townley Smith
FIRST- SOME HUGE(!) upcoming things going on with and our show- I’ll tell you real soon! In the meantime, I was over at Modern Vintage’s studios with Steven Sherrick last night and we have quite a few cool mini-videos, and more, on the way as well- AND FINALLY, that looooong in the works Jay Shafer Interview segment on Tiny Tumbleweed Houses.
Thanks to, to our friends at, and for making this one possible!!! If you ever want to help us out- advertise- please contact us. kidcedar at gmail dot com.
AND…Thought this in-the-works endeavor from artist Kate Townley Smith was VERY clever, not to mention fun….
Here’s your chance to support an artist, while getting a tiny painting of your own tiny home for about $30! CLICK HERE FOR INFORMATION on her exhibit.
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

A Geodesic Chicken Dome as YOUR home? Yeah, probably not, but its damn cool…

Buckminster Fuller and Lloyd Kahn eat your hearts out! lol….. No, the dome is a poor choice for space efficiency and construction for many reasons, but this lil’ chicken dome is just too cool!
Dustin’ Dr. Demolition” Diedricksen sent me this….which he found up on MAKE Mag’s site….
MORE info and step by step photos on anthony’s chicken dome can be found HERE AT HIS SITE

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Deek’s Art (“Tiny Yellow House” more episodes a’comin’ (fund raising))

               We’ll explain the weird art further below….(and don’t “click for gallery”- that comes later…)
"Cyclopian Squibble" (or who knows- I just pulled that title out of my 'you know what'....
Well….looks like later this week, as mentioned, we SHOULD have that Tiny Tumbleweed House Episode ready to post on my youtube channel (RelaxshacksDOTcom) for you guys
AND….looks like FRIDAY- Make Magazine will air our next “Tiny Yellow House” Make-Mag tutorial episode- this clip is a how-to on a deck chair I built for $0.89! One so strong that we lowered a Mercedes on it and it wouldn’t break (until take #2- which is the one you see in the video). The chair actually held up the entire car and started knocking it off its hydraulic lift- which we’ll eventually show too when we later air a longer, uncut run of the episode.
In the meantime (this is post #2 of the day- so sorry this is less tiny house/architecture oriented- see the other post below) as we’re planning on some HUGE things for “Tiny Yellow House” TV- some of which might require airline travel, a better budget, crew, and more. Anyway, before we eventually try our hand at to gather some funds for a series of 4 or so new episodes, I’m also going to start offering some “fund raising” art up for sale. The proceeds from any of these sales will be funneling into simply shooting more episodes of the show….
As for the art….(some far-out stuff, not for all, but it MIGHT be right up YOUR alley…)
“Cyclopian Squibble” (shown way above)- $300 (buyer pays shipping)  Salvaged/recycled art- approx. 18″ by 3′ in size- on 3/4 plywood, with Brazilian hardwood (flooring leftovers) as trim, and milk caps/screws/plastic incorporated. Done in thick ink…. it took MANY coats of paint to get that bright orange, and a very decent amount of time to take for something rather simple.
THE FOLD DOWN FORT- is also for sale- mixed-recycled media. $600 (buyer pays shipping). Its pretty huge- 2.5′ wide, by 4′ high. Check the pictures AND the video below (its now seen OVER 50,000 views). We built this for Make Magazine and their online TV show. The funds from this would very much so help the funding of another project, materials, and episode….which we certainly could use to keep this whole thing going more frequently.
kid cedar at gmail dot com if you’re interested…
More to come…
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

A Micro-Cube/Tiny Home In The Woods (The Catskills)

    A Modern, Cube-like Mini/Tiny House/Cabin in The Catskills (NY)…..I gave you the funky-art post (below) about 12 or so hours back, which was not-so house-related, so here’s a quick rebound-update…
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

A micro-kiosk/snack-bar shed-house

Here’s a shed structure courtesy of a company called “TUFFSHED” who seems to make some quality items. This particular one has been converted into a mini take-out restaurant. This tiny building could quite easily make for a very nice vacation cabin or tiny home…
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Sunday, February 13, 2011

The world’s smallest television/tv studio….well kinda….

"The Relaxshacks/'Tiny Yellow House TV' New Mini Studio"- Made of Recycled Materials
As for the photo above….no, its not truly any real tv studio, but the recycled-material, remodeled foyer at my home, where I just shot a couple of new micro-videos for my “RelaxshacksDOTcom” youtube channel. One of these clips is “Man With The Ugly Hat 2- TIny House/Cabin/Architecture Book Reviews”- in which we cover books from Colin Beaven, David and Jeanie Stiles, Gerald Rowan, Jay Shafer, Dan Mulfinger, Lloyd Kahn, and more.
The foyer: It cost about $200 or so to remodel, and incorporates a freebie door, recycled/free window, one entire wall made from cobbled-together pallet wood, leftover bamboo flooring, a wine-bottle ceiling light/lamp, and lots of mill-extra tongue and groove cedar (walls and ceiling). The window you see near the floor, actually opens outward and will later serve as the entrance to a “secret room” of sorts (storage, or a tiny library/reading room).
Ultimately, the exterior of this little room will be masked as a large doghouse/shed. Access to this door will be behind an upright/stored vacuum or two.
AS FOR THE WORKSHOP UPDATES: We’re already half-booked/half-sold out for this July 9th Building/Tiny Shelter Workshop in MA- so sign up soon if interested KIDCEDAR AT GMAIL DOT COM- AND NOW….
EACH person will be getting a copy of GERALD ROWAN’s BOOK “COMPACT CABINS”- a cabin/tiny house design book with SIXTY-TWO floorplans and sketches for your future cabin! – a $20 value. MORE to come too….
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

A Treehouse In Spain- Junk put to fun use…

Leave it to kids, without preconceived construction notions, to come up with some funky/funny building concepts. I mainly liked this photo here, because of its bed-headrail as a ladder. Its comical, but it would work…(if you needed a boost of a mere 4-5 feet of course). If you had several of these rails painted to match, you could also use them as just that- “railings”.
Also, sorry I buried the other new post so quickly- scroll down for Workshop updates and more….(the next more recent blog entry)

Big Ideas from the Small Houses/Architecture of Japan….’s been all over the small house scene lately (great news!)- and here’s an online article they ran on their homepage today regarding the tiny homes and architecture of Japan….some real cool stuff! My only question with the photo above (and many of the others in their gallery) is “yeah, these places look great(!), but where the heck do you relax? Where’s the furniture?”
Check out more at
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

A Fish/Whale Shaped Ice-Fishing House (Tiny)

I have a full-out sketched plan to build something very similar to this, and had never seen a fish-shaped ice-fishing shack before, but always figured SOMEONE had to have built one…..sure enough- Ron McMullin from Northern Wisconsin has- and its built/scultped out of of foam-insulation. The idea/plan I have would be made out of plywood- not as warm, but more durable. Great stuff though Ron!
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

“Humble Homes…” tiny house book in Readymade Magazine….

First- a random tiny shack photo of the day…since I don’t want to only yack about my book, etc…
We file this one in our "Oh Sh-t!" category
AND…I actually missed this when it initially ran (where my book was featured in the print version of the magazine (October issue)….its a side interview, posted online, that the always- awesome Alexa Fornoff did with me on self-publishing your own book or zine, and the tricks of the trade when doing so…..
You can check it out on READYMADE MAG’s SITE
Also- LATER TODAY I’ll also try to post my brand new “Man With The Ugly Hat 2″ Episode- with overcaffeinated tiny-house/small living/cabin book reviews on the works of Gerald Rowan, Jay Shafer/Tumbleweed Houses, Suzanne Lewis (Austin, TX), David and Jeanie Stiles, Peter Lewis (Vermont treehouse builder), Dan Mulfinger, Colin Beavan (no impact man), Lloyd Kahn, and more…..
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

A new vid- “The Man With The Ugly Hat 2″- tiny house/cabin/home/shack book reviews…

Lighting on this one sucks- my appologies- but given the circumstance and long story behind it- I had to post it up anyway (esp. as I wanted to get word/the plugs out there for the authors, etc)….outside the actual “Tiny Yellow House” show we’re a low budget “operation” anyway- so its somewhat fitting….
Anyway, I had fun recordin’ it, and here ya go- Part 2 of “Man With The Ugly Hat- video book reviews of tiny house/small living/energy independence books”
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Two Mo’ Shantyboats/Floating Tiny Homes...

Two Mo’ Shantyboats/Floating Tiny Homes...
Can you tell I’m looking forward to warmer weather?
Here’s a pair of cool little shantyboats that I found up on

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Dumpster Diving/Salvage materials for your tiny house/small cabin project

I’ve done a lil’ divin’ in the past- and read some GREAT (and VERY entertaining) books on the subject too. Truth be told, “dumpster diving” for things other than construction materials isn’t such a far cry from the minset behind “salvage construction” as you’ll see in the attached video. Its truly unbelievable how much gets wasted here in the states. In the tiny housing/small living world, since a good deal of the aim and impetus is to build affordably and “beat the system” to a degree, why not try this? If you’re worried about appearances, do it a night, and if confronted by”authorities”- go to the age old excuse “I’m moving, and was just looking for boxes”. You can always additionally drop some b.s. universal detail too- ie. “I talked to one of your employees the other day and he said it would be fine.”  If they ask for a name, as you’re already in the process of slowly walking away- drop some general name- chances are there is a “Mike” that works there (although you don’t want to get anyone in trouble).
ALSO- the main rule amongst divers, so as not to give them more of a misjudged bad reputation… ALWAYS leave the area cleaner than when you found it! As for yourself, if you’re going to do some true diggin- gloves are a must! A flashlight, and a stick to move and prod things around and aside, a long sleeve shirt, and GOOD rugged shoes are also a very good idea,
If you’ve got any great stories or tips of free dumpster, or curbside find, DO SHARE!
As for myself, I’ve never dived for food- although I’m not opposed to trying it- as most of the things that are tossed ARE perfectly good (as long as you read dates and use some scrutiny). The above youtube clip is based on a pretty decent story on the movement, and just might open your eyes to this avenue of obtaining whatever you might be in search of (in this case- building materials perhaps).
I’ve found hundreds of dollars, thousands even, worth of things on curbsides, and being thrown out behind buildings, and used most of it in my building projects. In other cases, I’ll clean up and sell some of the items on craigslist. I won’t get into details, but the savings can be HUGE, and the side-gig lucrative, if you have the time to pursue it.
Just recently I’ve found….
A full roll of roofing/tar paper, a wooden rocking chair that needed a minor fix (I’ll sell it, or use it in a future cabin I build), A HUGE box full of very expensive toys and action figures (which you can clean and gift to kids, or sell as a lot online), several six-panel pine doors (sold ‘em ALL!), a HUGE, double-pane bay window (which probably cost $1000+ new), SEVERAL double pane windows (which I incorporated into my side-foyer remodel), a tile saw (which worked GREAT- I sold it), an air compressor (worked fine!- gave it to a friend who needed one), and the list goes on….
I also saw a woman (driving a Lexus!) the other week dumpster diving for potted plants (which I hear many do at cemetaries when the maintenance staff discards all the long-standing plants into their dumpsters). This might sound bizarre, but its not like the “residents” are going to complain- and this stuff is being thrown out anyway.
Anyway, its a tangent post, but in terms of location materials for your budget-home or project, its a means to an end that shouldn’t be overlooked AND keep in mind that you’re keeping all this stuff out of landfills!
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

An Old-school funky, rustic, treehouse/treefort-cabin

There’s something about these freeform, homebuilt treehouses that no fancy architect with a trustfund client’s budget can seem to capture. This place is just the coolest- but yeah, you might need a few changes of underwear when making the climb…
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen

Monday, February 7, 2011

Update on our July 9th Tiny Shelter, Hands-on, Workshop in MA

 Just additionally confirmed for our 2011 Tiny House/Shelter Workshop in Stoughton, MA….(Again, a hands-on, out in the field workshop…rain or shine).
…An open-house appearance by the mobile wagon “The Whittled Down Caravan” courtesy of its creators Tristan Chambers and Libby Reinish! This duo drove their caravan from Santa Fe to Northhampton, MA last year, and chronicled their experiences in their blog Whittled Down.
More recently, they were featured in a multi-page spread in Readymade Magazine too.
Tristan and Libby will be on hand to talk about the building of their caravan, their travels, and to allow our workshop attendees to paw through its interior.
ALSO- NYC’s Mimi Zeiger (tiny house author and architect) will be speaking to our guests, Alex Pino of Tinyhousetalk will be making the trek from Florida to talk about his involvement and work in the field, I’ll be heading up some demonstrations and giving tours of the projects and mini-cabins on my property, AND Dustin “Dr. Demolition” Diedricksen, an Environmental Engineer, will also be fronting a few hands-on projects as well. We’ll be filming much of this workshop. and YOU, for upcoming editions of our show “Tiny Yellow House” too!
Fees (after much deliberation and taking into account materials, two meals for all attendees, some travel expenses for guests, hardware, tools, hiring a runner/helper, free handout materials/books, and the 7000 other things and time and money-consuming tasks involved with planning something like this…) One Day Workshop- 8am to 9pm (or later- culminating in a bonfire)
Before April 30th- $195.00
After April 30th- $225.00
For reservations and more info- THERE will be a max of 12-15 people in this workshop- so don’t “dilly dally”!
-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen