What makes a home one-of-a-kind? Some would answer its design or how it was built or the furnishings in every room. But for the Heather and Walker, their home is a clear standout against the rest. You can quickly tell that the couple’s remarkable home is more unique than the rest from the outside.
“Biomimicry. That’s the whole thing here—biophilic design. If you know about Fibonacci, that’s the curve,” Walker said. Upon your first look at Heather and Walker’s home, you’ll notice how the house’s frame alludes to the golden ratio—a concept of mathematics and design, which occurs organically in nature.
“In my world, we talked a lot about Biophilia, which is kind of human’s innate connection to nature and drawing the nature,” Walker added. He also reasoned that straight lines do not occur in nature, hence the mimicry of the leaf’s shape.
The tiny house measures 250 square feet with a low-profile living roof. It required a few trials and experimenting, but after a while, Walker figured out how to make it sustainable. The couple used recycled foam carpet pad, ¼ inch layer of fortified soil with biochar, lightweight pumice mix, a few more components that made Walker’s ambitious desire into a reality.
Heather and Walker built their tiny house while keeping the “Living Building Challenge” principle. “Every building should be built the way a flower exists in its place. It should be rooted in place, it should collect the water that falls on it, [and] it should collect and use only the sun that falls on it…”
And like a beautiful flower capable of sustaining its existence, the couple’s biophilic home provides beauty and use, while equipped with tools necessary for recycling. In fact, most of the materials used in the home’s construction are also recycled. From the Fibonacci curved roof, placement of a window, reclaimed Barnwood walls, to the living roof—every aspect of the house is thought through every step of the way.
Despite the tiny house’s size, the grand entrance way makes enhances the space and unifies the home’s motif and helps the ambiance transition from the lush outdoors into the couple’s humble abode. Meanwhile, the skylight sits on the roof on top of the entrance, giving ample natural light during the daytime. “That’s that transparent, where I’m feeling I can be inside, but still experiencing the outside,” Walker explained.
Inside, the first that will capture your attention are the windows that give the entire structure a cozy and freeing ambiance. One large window greets you as you enter, leading your eyes up into a recycled oak ceiling with a design reminiscent of a forest’s canopy of branches.
Heather was at the helm of the house’s interior design and layout choices. She was inspired by the Scandinavian principle of ‘hygge,’ which is commonly known as the ‘art of cozy.’ Heather’s goal of bringing nature inside was successful. On your right, you will see a lounge placed compactly adjacent to two windows. What happens if there are guests? The area has little pieces of furniture that can be converted into a bench.
Just above the living area is the sleeping loft where their daughter, Michaela, loves to curl up and read comic books under the hanging lights. On the left side of the biophilic home resides in the kitchen. The gorgeous benchtop that comes with a pull-out cutting board and an attachable extension to transform the whole countertop into a table for three.
The spacious kitchen features a deep farmhouse sink and a gas stove. The pantry and washer/dryer are located on the opposite side. Just a few steps from the kitchen is the Japanese-inspired bathroom. In spite of the small size allotted in the room, Heather and Walker were still able to squeeze in a small tub.
Beyond the beauty of the couple’s biophilic home, therein lies a higher purpose—a sustainable home incorporating biophilia and biomimicry to give the planet a fighting chance. “If we could actually build that way, we can change the course of humans on the planet,” Walker said with conviction.
The couple feels that living in a tiny house is more than figuring out what to do with space. In their words: “It’s about the conscious effort and the conscious way to live.”
Give yourself a full tour by watching the video below Living Big in a Tiny House: