TinyHouse43's Building Blog

From Texas-sized 2 Tiny House For Three

I know it sounds crazy, but…

…the idea of making our house look like Howl’s Moving Castle is actually not as hair-brained as I once thought. As soon as I saw The Little Bird from Zyl Vardos I immediately got inspired and contacted Abel, the genius behind that gorgeous house and many others. Even if he ends up just giving us advice via video chat instead of finding time to create a custom blueprint for us (hey, he’s a man in demand!), I can totally picture creating a house that combines the look of the entrance to Howl’s Castle (see pic) with a more traditional tiny house on the back end. I know that’s hard to picture in your head, so I’ve attached my (horrid) sketch of a side view below a few screen grabs from the Howl movie itself that show various angles of the castle door. Forgive their crudity, by the way… it was easier to snap them with the iPad than it was to use my DSLR and upload them. Gotta love modern technologies like Photo Stream!

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(preceding images taken of my TV while watching Hayao Miyazaki’s “Howl’s Moving Castle,” & rights belong to him & Studio Ghibli)Image

(My craptastic attempt at showing what would happen if Zyl Vardos’ “Little Bird” mated with a Tumbleweed tiny house)

I told you it was horrid. Brandy is the true artist in the family, believe you me. Anyway, I actually think it kind of looks like a train, which will definitely be a winner considering how train (plane, and automobiles of all kinds) obsessed RAD is. The whole point of the two very different styles is to honor the hodgepodge style of Howl’s actual castle. It looks like what would happen if Mega Maid was left on “suck” over the realm and all the crap (including houses, ships, random hunks of metal, cannon turrets, and mechanical bird feet apparently) that got sucked up congealed together to create a functional house. Obviously we can’t get that crazy or random as still have a roadworthy vehicle, but splicing together two very different styles of houses and mimicking the look of the entrance to Howl’s castle on one end would certainly go a long way toward giving the impression that the house was at least inspired by Howl.

Oh, and yes, I did totally make a “Space Balls” reference in 2014. Dated m’self, didn’t I??

Anyway, in an effort to get as much square footage on the inside of the house, regardless of what plan we use to build with, we’ll make a collapsing porch and stairs attachment that can be folded up or taken apart for storage while traveling. I’m thinking recycled wrought iron railings can be abused a bit more to get the mismatched look of the Howl rails, and either a simple paint job or some sort of thin faux stone could be added to the top step for the look of the porch. We’d add some huge eyebolts to the back of the trailer and matching hooks to the back of the top step so that the steps would actually be attached to the house for a bit more stability. I’m also thinking a solar hanging lantern would be perfect to hang off the top eave over the door (only while stationary) to complete the look. Details, but important ones to consider in the future.

I’m thinking that if nothing else we would need to know the proper mechanics involved for creating a curved roof line that is stable enough for road travel and what materials should be used or avoided. I’m fairly confident if we have a master designer like Abel at Zyl design to roof line we can handle incorporating it with the rest of a more basic design that we would then build ourselves. Here’s hoping he can squeeze that in for us!

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