Paperback: 144 pages
Publisher: Fox Chapel Publishing; 53914th edition (September 23, 2011)
Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.6 x 10.9 inches
Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #428,789 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #141 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Home Improvement & Design > Small Homes & Cottages #255 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Outdoor & Recreational Areas #623 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Home Improvement & Design > How-to & Home Improvements > Do-It-Yourself
I love tumbleweed houses, and I bought this book to get a better idea of the interiors and how to build shelves and closets in small spaces. This book is first and foremost an advertisements for tumbleweed homes. It gives a lot of very basic layouts for the houses and then tells you to purchase the plans from the website.The parts that did contain DIY information looked to be taken straight form a generic source. None of the DIY pages had people working on tumbleweed houses. Instead you will get some illustrated how to pages of people working on large structures. I was very disappointed by this. In one DIY page it shows you the proper way to cut down a tree... WHY!?Overall I think they were stretching to get enough content for this book. I was hoping to get a lot of nice how to info on tumbleweeds, but I ended up getting a few pages of useless DIY. For the same money I could have bought a more comprehensive how to book form Home Depot.
If you have Fox Chapels book on small cottages a cabins then you have most if not all of the practical content of the book. The remainder is a catalog with great pictures and floor plans for Tumbleweed Houses. The book is usefull in that aspect and for getting ideas but know what you are getting.
While I'll agree that some of the book is nothing more than a catalog I will say it is more than that. They give a walk through, starting with how to cut down a tree. Why? How many people do you know that have EVER cut down a tree? The idea is to expand the minds (and the market) of tiny houses and I appreciate that Jay Shafer didn't leave anything to chance.What I didn't like was that the instructions, on the last page of the book, were for two great offers. One was the ability to purchase a set of six bungalow plans for only $49.95 (a roughly $500 savings) and the other was a code (found in a well sealed flap of the last page) to be used to download the Zinn bungalow plans for free. However, when this reviewer went online to take advantage of both of these, neither link was available on the Tumbleweed site. I emailed the company but didn't get an answer so I messaged them through Facebook and got a prompt response that I want all of you to know.They did email me the plans for the Zinn bungalow (nowhere near as convenient as the book alludes to). The offer for the six bungalow plans for only $49.95? I'll quote them here, "That offer is no longer available." Where I live that is called false advertising, but I understand laws vary from state to state.At any rate, if you get joy from looking at tiny houses - get the book. I'm keeping mine, despite the misrepresentation.
My impression of the book is that Jay Shafer wrote a couple of pages about designing and living in a tiny house and the publishers pasted together some generic info about building small structures. There are many drawings of boring bungalow style mini-cottages that don't seem useful for anything. Overall, it is very uninspiring. I returned my copy.
I purchased this book after reading the very mixed reviews on , and now see the validity of many of the reviewers' points.I've been following the Small House movement for many years - and drawing my own plans for decades, so I'd say I'm a devotee, but not yet committed. I have purchased Jay's previous books, so I was ready for this as a second step to help me see the work involved in building my "dream home." It looks overwhelming to me as a person with some limitations, but it certainly laid out the scope of the project (at least the building's shell, not the interior).The one great shortcoming of the book is the lack of interior shots. If there are so many ways to finish the interior of the tiny house, well then, let's see it! Perhaps the author feels this is ground that has already been covered, but I'm sure from the comments here, and the endless stream of decorating and design books, that there is a real hunger to know how these tiny homes are being used.The designs that are included all reflect a gorgeous Craftsman/Bungalow style, with bold details and expressive color. Superior craftsmanship is evident in many shots, and the siting of the small home is exquisite in many cases. While the book does have a bit of a patchwork feel to it, Jay Shafer continues to expand his vision of the Tiny House as lifestyle and design.
Much of this book was a how-to-do-carpentry guide. I was looking for tips on tiny houses and what I got was a nicely bound super nice book however 1/2 looked like diagrams and wall--framing how-to from a bunch of old Sunset Magazine yard and graden books I have on the shelves. Just don't expect too much. Limited use to me as a person converting basements on hillside houses and detatched garages into apartments. This may be a good book for younger book buyers or inexperienced framers and the photos are nice......just don't expect too much.
I recently ordered, "Backyard Sheds and Tiny Houses." The book is terrible. It is a complete waste of money. I expected the recapitulation of the Tumbleweed catalog as filler but at least in, "The Small House Book" there was some interesting information. The "Backyard Sheds & Tiny Houses" book is a vastly inferior version of a basic construction book. There appears to be no effort to tailor any of the basic construction information to tiny dwellings.Basic construction books that I would recommend are, "Building Thoreau's Cabin," by Stephen Taylor and "Habitat for Humanity, How to Build a House" by Haun. "The Tiny Book of Tiny Houses" by Lester Walker is not a construction book but it is great to get you dreaming.Tumbleweed has some attractive models. The over priced Tumbleweed plans may even have a place if you have to build an RV (as in... on a trailer) and you don't want an Airstream. However, if can build on any kind of foundation, it makes more sense to use traditional design in dimensions that are multiples of 4, with standard 2x4s. If you have never built anything you may not understand why this is so important but it is. Tumbleweed could easily adapt their designs and they would be just as cute; just cheaper, easier and more efficient to build. If you are not building an RV I would wait. I heard Tumbleweed hired a school-trained architect and I would bet money she will address this sooner than later.
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