Big Design Ideas for Tiny Houses


The tiny house movement seems to be here to stay, and as more people look to live large in small spaces, functional design and layout are a big part of making this lifestyle work. Depending on where you live and your financial situation, you can either rent or own a tiny home just like you can a regular sized one. Some are on wheels, while some are set on a foundation, with most being independent structures that are built or parked on land with larger homes. With the goal of living a simpler, smaller and more sustainable life, tiny houses offer many benefits such as financial freedom, environmental impact, and flexibility. 

With the typical American home averaging around 2,000+ square feet, those living the tiny life usually are working with spaces around 400 square feet. Bottom line, less really is more for those who embrace the tiny life philosophy, as decluttering your home adds to your well-being and quality of life while decreasing stress…and to make this process really easy, you can even purchase one on Amazon! So if you are ready to join the movement, read on for some big design ideas to make the most of your tiny house design. Just remember, choosing to live small doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice on design details…it might just mean you can afford them now!

Tiny Kitchens

If you’re working with a small space in the kitchen, then factoring in scale and proportion for every design decision will make all the difference. This includes appliances, so look for those that are longer and narrower, or opt for an all-in-one piece. Look for options that will fit what you need, but not make your tiny kitchen look well, tiny. When it comes to design options, start by using design tools such as Pinterest or Houzz boards to collect ideas that inspire you. A design professional can take elements you love from a normal sized kitchen and work with you to downsize and bring them to life in your small space. When it comes to kitchen cabinets in tiny kitchens, consider going floor to ceiling to maximize storage…and this is where white on white cabinets or a light natural wood such as bamboo, may be the best way to go. Other tips include using a neutral color palette overall, and make sure you don’t underestimate the power of good lighting. 

Tiny Bathrooms 

Even small powder rooms in a regular sized house can create bathroom design challenges for homeowners, but in a tiny house things can get even more complicated. But don’t worry, follow a few key design ideas and this room can feel as beautiful as it is functional.

Just like in the kitchen, many tiny house owners go with light, neutral colors to make their small bathroom spaces feel larger. Built-in shelving and bathroom vanities are also a must for maximizing storage space for linens and touches of decor. But if you’re looking for a little creativity, the benefits of sticking with one color in a tiny bathroom, means you can experiment a bit with tile choices and patterns. You can also consider an open door shower to save on space and show off your tile selection. When it comes to the bathroom vanity, natural wood-toned bathroom cabinets balance out the neutral color palette. They also help create a rustic, environmentally-conscious feeling many tiny homeowners are wanting to achieve when they choose to live this lifestyle. Also consider transforming the tiny bathroom into a laundry room by working a stackable unit into the cabinet design. One other design idea that is different? Forgo the mirror, but instead use the wall space for shelves and storage. 

Get Creative With Every Inch

Moving into a tiny house doesn’t mean you can’t maximize your living options. There are many ways to get the most out of every inch of a tiny home. Some out-of-the-box design ideas include: 

  • Include a rooftop deck accessible by a ladder 
  • Don’t hold back on windows…from a roll-up glass door, to skylights, and a glass entry door, natural lighting can make a big difference in how big a tiny home feels
  • Focus on an interior that is open and multifunctional, with a combined galley kitchen leading to a bath, living area, and a loft above that serves as the main bedroom
  • Add a sofa that can be converted into a bed to sleep an additional guest or two
  • Include other natural elements such as plants, reclaimed wood, and varying textures to make the space feel larger