Handcrafted Hideaway, a 264-square-foot home devised by Matt and Elizabeth Impola of Handcrafted Movement is as comfortable as it is stylish. "It reflects our love of the California coast," Elizabeth says. "We chose soothing colors and textures that create a sense of peace."
The blue-and-white tiny house is nestled just 35 minutes outside of downtown Portland and about a mile up the road from Battle Ground’s Main Street, a charming thoroughfare lined with restaurants, cafes, boutiques, and antique shops. "We’re also surrounded by lush hiking trails, Molton Falls, and Battle Ground Lake State Park," Elizabeth says.
Wrapped in lap siding on the lower portion and board-and-batten siding on the upper section, the home is marked by a massive deck and a custom cedar awning that extend from its front facade. "Because this house is located in the Pacific Northwest where there’s heavy rain, we used a more durable material on the lower area of the exterior," Matt says. "The cedar awning covers the French doors at the entry and provides cover for guests coming in and out—cedar is one of our favorite woods."
One of Matt and Elizabeth’s main goals was for the kitchen to be as comfortable and functional as a standard-size kitchen. "The sink is nestled under a large window that fills the room with lots of natural light," Elizabeth says. Adjacent to the kitchen is a dining area that accommodates as many as four guests, who sit comfortably on a built-in wood bench with a live edge and a pair of leather-upholstered stools that pull up to an oak-slab table. The table serves as a multifunctional space that can also be used as a workstation. "There’s even a built-in charging cubby with USB-C outlets," Matt says. "Rooms in tiny homes need to serve a variety of functions."
Elizabeth and Matt outfitted the living area of the tiny house with a floor-to-ceiling brick fireplace that sections the room from the main-floor bedroom. "Elizabeth was insistent on using a thin ceramic brick material that gives authentic depth and texture," Matt says. "She grouted and tiled the brick—it was a two-day endeavor. The end result was more than worth it."
On either side of the fireplace, the couple installed angled board-and-batten pocket doors that close off the bedroom when privacy is needed. When the doors are open, the fireplace has a floating effect, and when they’re closed, the mint-green doors lend interest, color, and texture to the living area. "We hid the downstairs bedroom behind the fireplace—all our guests are surprised when they slide the secret wall-like doors open to reveal the cozy bedroom," Elizabeth says.
In the bedroom, a vaulted ceiling with a ledge where the walls and the ceiling meet creates a feeling of airiness. "The ceiling and the bookshelf give a sense of whimsy," Elizabeth says. "The bookshelf also serves as much-needed storage."
According to Elizabeth and Matt, the best thing about designing and building a tiny home is challenging the status quo. "There’s the American ideal that bigger is better," Matt says. "Creating small spaces that are beautiful, functional, and intentional is much more gratifying than building the typical sprawling 3000-square-foot house. Smaller spaces give people affordable, efficient housing options—and that gives them dignity."
Handcrafted Hideaway is available to rent for a temporary stay on Airbnb.
More from Handcrafted Movement:
Interior Design: Elizabeth Impola
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