More and more people are now embracing the idea of downsizing, living simply with less, and having a smaller environmental footprint. It gives us more time to do the things we’re passionate about, unbridled by the financial burden of a huge mortgage. For many it’s a lifestyle choice that comes with a few challenges, but when designed well gives so much freedom and personal satisfaction.
Shipping containers transformed into an amazing living space are becoming a more popular option amongst tiny home enthusiasts because of their versatility, affordability, and durability. Many also have interesting histories that make great dinner conversation topics. But how does one turn a humble shipping container into a compact yet cosy, functional home? Here are some clever design ideas you can do:
1. Let natural light filter in – Having large windows and sliders that let natural light filter into the room gives a sense of space. It also allows you to expand outside and connect with the natural environment around you. Leak-proof, energy efficient skylights can brighten your home during the day and give you an amazing view of the stars at night. Add a motorised sliding blind to close it up when the sun gets too hot!
2. Brighten up your room – Painting your walls and floors white makes the space look so much bigger than it is. Break the monotonous space with a colourful piece of furniture or a large wall painting as a focal point. Alternatively, pick a bright and bold colour for a feature wall. Large patterned rugs don’t only brighten your small space but also give it a grandiose feel.
3. Maximise storage space – Space is certainly a challenge for a 20 or 40-foot container home. Wall-mounted bookshelves and cabinetry give you more floor space for other furniture and helps reduce clutter. Pull out drawers under the stairs, bed, couch, or work desk give you plenty of storage space for linens, clothes, shoes and other knick-knacks.
4. Choose multi-function furniture – Pick multi-purpose furniture in your home, such as a fold-out dining table that could be converted into an office desk. Benches that double up as a storage box or fold-down beds that could be pushed up the wall during the day are also a clever idea. Place a wooden cover on your kitchen sink and voila, you have an instant added countertop!
5. Use smart lighting – We’ve mentioned how large windows and glass sliding doors bring in natural light into your home. To complement these, add lighting under the kitchen cabinets or wall-mounted bedside lamps as instant space-savers. Warm light above or in front of a mirror helps illuminate the whole space for better ambiance.
Whether you’re building your first shipping container home or still thinking of getting one, there’s plenty of creative small space design ideas out there that you can inspire you along the way. The secret is using simple yet clever design features that work for you!