Tuesday, 23 November 2010

All That I Have



- Shoes -

1 x Walking Boots

1 x Camper Shoes

1 x Slippers

1 x Ski Boots

1 x Flip Flops

- T-shirts -

3 x Rapha Merino White T's

1 x Pink T

1 x HH Black T

1 x Purple Long Sleeve

- Shirts -

1 x Ralph Lauren Pink Shirt

1 x Reiss Grey Check Shirt

1 x Reiss Red Check Shirt

- Jumpers -

1 x Ralph Lauren Rugby Shirt

1 x Reiss Cableknit Jumper

3 x Reiss Thin Jumpers

1 x Reiss Blue Wool Jumper

1 x Reiss High Collar Jumper

1 x Arc' Teryx Midlayer

- Trousers -

1 x Levi Chinos

1 x Blue Chinos

1 x Vivienne Westwood Trousers

1 x Fisherman Pyjamas

1 x Jack Wills Pyjamas

2 x Shorts

- Jackets -

1 x Rab Primaloft

1 x Haglofs Primaloft

1 x OMM Waterproof

1 x Mountain Equipment Softshell

- Underwear -

2 x Icebreaker Merino Boxers

9 x American Apparel Boxers

16 x Daily Socks

2 x Thick Socks

3 x Long Johns

- Misc -

1 x Belt

1 x Rapha Neckscarf

1 x Brown Hat

1 x Oakley Sunglasses

1 x Glasses

1 x Brooch Pin

Camping / Outdoor Equipment

- Shelter -

1 x Nemo Nano Elite Tent

1 x Hennessy Hammock

- Sleeping -

1 x Mountain Equipment Xero 350 Sleeping Bag

1 x Thermarest Rollmat

- Bags -

1 x Ortovox 25l Rucksack

1 x Osprey 70l Rucksack

1 x Trakke Messenger Bag

1 x Stuff Sack (L)

1 x Stuff Sack (M)

2 x Stuff Sack (S)

1 x Stuff Sack (XS)

2 x Drybags

1 x Royal Mail Insert

1 x Royal Mail returns bag

3 x Alpkit Stuff Sacks

1 x North Face Washbag

3 x Muji Storage Cases

1 x Medic Bag

- Cooking -

1 x Anitgravity Gear Cookset

1 x Alpkit Mytimug

1 x Titanium Spork

1 x Soda-can Stove

1 x Water bottle

1 x Kettle

1 x Camelback Hydration Bladder

1 x 3 Litre Stanley Thermos Flask

1 x 500ml Thermos Flask

- Misc -

1 x Sailing Knife

1 x Petzl Zipka Headtorch

1 x Camptowel

1 x Waste Bottle


1 x 2 burner stove

1 x Gas bottle

1 x 10l Water Container

1 x 5l Pump Shower

1 x 10l Solar Shower


1 x Canon 400D SLR Camera

1 x Apple MacBook Pro Laptop

1 x 1TB WD Hard Drive

1 x 8GB USB Stick

1 x iPhone

1 x 3G Mobile Wireless Internet

1 x Ipod Shuffle

1 x Headphones

1 x 2.1 Speakers

1 x Roberts Radio

1 x Electric Razor

1 x Power Splitter

1 x Solar Power Panel Set

1 x Projector


2 x Shampoo

1 x Body Wash

1 x Badedas Bubble Bath

1 x Toothpaste

3 x Toothbrush

1 x Deodorant

1 x Aftershave

1 x Bath Brush

1 x Towel


1 x Personals Pouch

1 x Organiser File

1 x Poker Cards

1 x Tin Whistle

1 x General Toolkit

1 x Slackline

1 x Ramsey Walking Ladder

1 x Crochet Hook

93 x Books

1 x Laptop Case

2 x Decommissioned Parachutes

Bike Related

1 x Fixed Gear Bicycle

1 x Bicycle Toolkit

1 x Bicycle Multitool

1 x Puncture Repair Kit

1 x Track Pump

1 x Cycling Gloves

1 x Knog Boomer Lights

1 x Kryptonite Mini U-Lock

Work Related

8 x Sketchbooks

12 x Daily Notebooks

1 x Coloured Pen Set

1 x Pencil Case


1 x Coffee Cone and Filter

4 x Knives

1 x Knife Sharpener

1 x Silicone Baking Sheet

1 x Hungry Catepillar Mug

2 x Bowls

2 x Wine Glasses

Saturday, 30 October 2010

I was featured in the Saturday Times Magazine today in an article entitled 'The Cult of Less". The author was writing about a few young people who are trying to live more minimal lifestyles. It was interesting to see how many different approches there are to this way of living, from living out of a suitcase and doing work online to simply enjoying minimalism as an entire way of life.

I am trying to make all of my possessions fit into these two yellow crates. Some people, like this girl, take the 100 things challenge, but I think it makes more sense to have a minimal lifestyle based on weight or volume. If you want to be able to move items in a car, make all of your possessions fit into the boot. If you want to live a nomadic lifestyle, make all of your possessions tally to a weight you can carry alone, like 30kg. The storage compartment in my microhouse is about 4ft square, so these two crates make a perfect volume for this storage space!

If you would like to read the full article, I have uploaded it here:

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

While researching my dissertation, I found a backcopy of 'Popular Science' magazine from the 70's. Isaacs wrote for Popular Science a few times, but this one had some great photos of other microhouses! Until now, I had only seen the one he writes about in 'How to build your own Living Structures'. I love the green one...
Morning coffee. One of the nice things about the microhouse is that I can reach the stove while I'm in bed. When I wake up, I reach over, turn on the stove and boil the kettle. By the time I have made coffee, the house is much warmer and I'm ready to get out of my sleeping bag!

The amount of steam the coffee makes gives a pretty good indication of how cold it is too! Some mornings you can barely see the mug for steam!
Sorry about the poor quality image, but this is where I have built the shower. I spread a tarp between the house and the wall, to give me some shelter from weather and to obscure the view from the street. Pallets keep me off the ground and allow water to drain away.

The shower itself is made from a 5 litre household fertiliser spray pump. I switched the nozzle with a shower head, which took no time at all! You fill it with warm water, pump the handle about 40 times and it gives enough pressure for a 5 minute shower! Not bad!

It might be a bit bracing outside though...
I had to move the house a bit this week - the Community Garden are planning to build a water-bottle greenhouse where the Microhouse was initially, so I have moved it into a corner nearer the street. It is actually less noticeable here, which is good, as I dont want to attract too much attention while on the site.

I found 8 friends who were willing to help to move the shelter, and we moved it as one piece, holding the legs to carry it. I was worried that it might twist and strain the joints, but it seems to be completely fine. Totally bomb-proof!

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Glasgow being Glasgow, the sunshine doesn't last long. This week has been pretty rainy. On Tuesday night I woke up at 3am with the bolt holes in the roof leaking again. The water must have crept in under the tape somehow. I have since applied silicone to the inside edges of the structure, and resealed the tape on the structure. I am hoping this is just a one-off incident, as everything seems to be fine again now. Nonetheless, I have been looking into waterproof tapes with stronger adhesives just in case.

Otherwise the house is performing really well. I am surprised at how warm the shelter is, and how roomy it feels. Initially I planned to install a shower inside the space, but I think it will be more convenient to have it elsewhere, so this week I plan to create a covered 'annex' on the side of the house in which to shower.

When I stayed in the microhouse for the Hotel Gilchrist exhibition, I used silicon to seal the gaps where the panels join together. After a night of rain, however, I realised that water was still getting in through the bolt-holes on the roof. This time I have used duct tape, which I hope to be a more effective way to waterproof the structure cheaply and easily. So far, it seems to be sticking onto the wood quite well. If it begins to peel, I might have to find a plan B...

Thursday, 30 September 2010

Moving onto the Woodlands Community Garden on West Princes Street in Glasgow. I have a month 'trial period' on the site, which may be extended at the end of october. The site itself is fantastic - 'Grow' have been developing the site with the community, so I'm surrounded by food-filled planting beds! Perfect!

Friday, 2 July 2010

Constructed in Central Glasgow, for the Hotel Gilchrist exhibition...

For a while now, I have been interested in a movement from the 1960's and 70's known as the 'Urban Nomad' movement. Formed by students such as James Henessey and Victor Papanek, the movement focused on small scall, portable dwellings in urban locations.

One member, Ken Isaacs, particularly intrigued me. His designs, smaller than architecture but bigger than furniture, captured my imagination.

Having studied this subject for a few years now, one can only speculate so much. Reading can only get you so far, before you have to take another step and actually try it.

So thats what I'm doing.

Using the instructions written by Isaacs in 'How To Build Your Own Living Structures', I have created a replica of this 50 year old design, and plan to live in it, in the centre of Glasgow, Scotland, for one year. In doing so I hope to gain more insight into Isaacs design, and also into the movement as a whole.

I move in at the start of September 2010.

This blog documents the journey. I hope that you find it interesting.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Tea break.

Mounting windows.

Placing floorboards.

3 corners complete.

Assembling the legs.

The house, disassembled.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Construction of legs.

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Corner angles bent using a jig.
Manufacturing the door.
Plywood components.
Scale Model
Glasgow, 2010
8' Microhouse
Ken Isaacs, How to build your own Living Structures, 1971.