I am learning the intricacies of this small footprint experiment, testing my design choices daily and if my thinking was correct. Some design elements are working perfectly, others could use improvement. One item that immediately became cumbersome was the very popular $199 IKEA Norden gateleg table.
This table is a popular choice in tiny houses due to the 3 storage drawers on each end and the ability to expand either side of the table. When both sides are folded down the top only measures 10″ making it a great space saver. When I was thinking about my livingroom space I wanted to incorporate this table into the design. I thought the gatelegs would be perfect for when I needed to work or break out an art project so I made a space for it at one end of the couch
The order from IKEA took a long time to arrive so plan accordingly if you are having items delivered from them! This table must be assembled, and while I don’t love putting furniture together this was relatively easy. I quickly learned that this table is HEAVY at about 110 pounds. My thinking was that I would be able to slide it out when I wanted a table to work or eat at. Once the drawers were loaded, it was cumbersome and not something I could easily make work in the space.
Renovation #1 was to put it on casters, which then made it too tall and they really didn’t work very well. Putting felt on the legs worked much better for sliding it out on my vinyl plank flooring. But then I added this rug (which I really, really love) and now it had to be rolled back in order to slide the table out.
From a convenience standpoint this just was not working. Wanting to use what I had already purchased, I pulled the table out, emptied all the drawers and removed one side of the table and a gateleg. I attached these to the wall below my windows and put the casters on my storage ottoman. Bingo! I now have an easily accessible work or eating space with a lovely view.
This solution renders the drawers on the back side of the table pretty much unusable, but I have plans to remove them as well and use them in another location. The drawers on the front hold office supplies. By pulling the runner back a few feet the ottoman on casters easily rolls into place. I can setup or break down in seconds.
I would encourage anyone designing a tiny house to not make all your design decisions and purchases all at once. After living in it, the space will reveal itself to you and how to best accommodate your needs. My lower cabinets have temporary storage in them and I am glad because I am learning exactly what I would like to have under there.
I am happy to report that the house is staying warm and my water continues to run hot as winter finally showed up after January tricked us into thinking it would be an early spring. There have been some big winds on this little hill and you can feel the house slightly rock when the gusts hit. The house made some odd groans when the temps dropped well below zero, but is holding its own in this climate.
“In the midst of winter I discovered that there was in me an invincible summer” Albert Camus
Be Well Friends,