At last count I had lived in 26 different houses in six countries and many more cities, so home has been something I’ve learned to create and is not necessarily tied to a specific place or space. However, after several years in Washington DC I found myself wanting to finally created a physical home and was drawn towards tiny houses on wheels for their simplicity and mobility. Even though most of the tiny houses I saw were built in rural areas or smaller cities, I decided I wouldn’t let the fact that I live in an urban area deter me from my desire to build one. Yet I also knew I didn’t want to build one all on my own and wanted to embark on this process with others, so in 2012 I co-founded Boneyard Studios Tiny House Community in Washington DC with a couple other tiny house enthusiasts and built my house under the guidance of local builders and designers.
As a geographer I am passionate about redefining the ways we live and create community in highly-transient and densely-populated urban spaces, and I have worked with communities in the U.S. and Latin America on land rights and sustainable community development I know how important it is to be able to see a tiny house in person and talk with people who are living in them before embarking on the huge endeavor of building one. For that reason, I held numerous community work days on my house, created a tiny house concert series, and developed a tiny house design workshop with builders and designers who worked on my house. We also welcomed hundreds of visitors every month at our Boneyard Studios open houses. In addition, we’ve met with city officials, developers, and community development groups to help them understand how tiny houses can be a good example of urban infill and serve as a small component of affordable housing strategies and creative arts spaces in cities.