The Tiny House Conference In Portland This Weekend Was A Slam Dunk!


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About 350 people serious about living simply and in a small space gathered at the start of the Tiny House Conference in Portland Saturday. They came from all over the U.S. and as far away from Japan to figuratively kick the tires and literally open the latches and quiz builders about the infrastructure of self-contained abodes the size of a living room rug.

Under blue skies, they stood in long lines to tour six tiny houses parked behind the Holiday Inn near the Portland airport, the site of the two-day conference that continues through Sunday, April 19.

Tiny House Conference organizer Ryan Mitchell was autographing copies of his book, "Tiny House Living: Ideas For Building and Living Well In Less than 400 Square Feet" and answering some of the hard questions about land, laws and loans from fans of his popular TheTinyLife.com blog.

Other heroes of the tiny house movement were also on hand: Dee Williams, author of "The Big Tiny: A Built-It-Myself Memoir" (to be released in paperback April 22) and co-founder of Portland Alternative Dwellings (PAD), a resource for building tiny houses, was giving tours of a 56-square-foot vardo-style house on wheels.

Tiny House Conference Portland 2015About 350 people serious about living simply and in a small space gathered at the start of the Tiny House Conference in Portland Saturday. They came from all over the U.S. and as far away from Japan to kick the tires, open the latches and quiz builders about the infrastructure of self-contained abodes the size of a living room rug.

PAD's other founder, Joan Grimm, was also there, sharing news about upcomingworkshops and events, including the monthly free mixer.

Artist Aaron Ziobrowski of The Loaded Brush and Patrick Sughrue of Artisan Tiny Houses are building a tiny house on the spot. By Saturday afternoon, some of the SIP walls were in place.

When Ziobrowski has finished the interior, painted the outside and finds financial support, he's taking his tiny house on the road, as part of his Tiny House Mural Tour.

Portland-based tiny house builder Shelter Wise had its 96-square-foot Salsa Box model on display. Conference goers admired the postage stamp-size green roof shading the front door.

This year's how-to gathering -- dubbed "the biggest Tiny House Conference yet!" -- also includes speakers, such as Kristie Wolfe, who has built two, off-the-grid tiny houses, one in Idaho and one in Hawaii.

Wolfe and other instructors are offering concrete information on design, construction, building systems, codes and zoning to help novice builders interested in DIY tiny houses on foundations and trailers as well as those utilizing straw-bale and cob construction.

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