Tiny houses, houses in hillsides, tree houses and even “invisible” houses…Architects these days are getting more creative and homeowners more picky in what they’re looking for in a home. No longer do four walls and a roof suffice. No, people want a home built into the hillside using only the natural materials of the hillside itself. Space? Who needs space? For many people, smaller is better! In fact, homes that are 400 square feet are even too large for the likes of some people. And then there are shipping container homes.
You read that right: homes made of shipping containers.
Quick anecdote: My own dad has his fair share of crazy ideas, many of which we all happily indulge knowing all the while that he’ll never actually follow through. One of those ideas was to use the family’s extra land to build another home. But, he told us, I want to use shipping containers. This was like ten years ago, when I was just graduating high school. At the time I thought he was crazy. But then, a few years later, we were gathered around watching HGTV and I kid you not, there was a commercial for a show about shipping container homes. My dad, it turns out, is a genius, but maybe just a little ahead of his time.
Anecdote over, let’s fast forward to today. Shipping container homes are a huge deal, and people are using them to reduce their carbon footprint as they use only minimalist materials and the natural landscape. Studio H:T is in the business of designing and building environmentally friendly homes, and one of their specialties is shipping container homes. Studio H:T’s portfolio is quite impressive, but one home that really caught our attention is a home they designed for Nederland, Colorado, resident Andrew McMullin.
McMullin is not someone who does things the conventional way. In fact, he is someone who does the exact opposite of conventional. McMullin, now an architect, went to school for a creative writing degree. When he wanted to go to the tip of South America, he rode his bike…all the way from San Francisco. And when he decided that he wanted to build a home, he said, to heck with brick and mortar, get me a shipping container! And that’s how this beauty came to be.
McMullin contracted out the design of his home to Studio H:T but did the actual building himself. It took him 18 months and two brutally long winters. The job involved hauling the containers up his curved driveway, which proved to be a feat in and of itself. Because the containers are so massive, and because his driveway is so curvy, he had to lift up the back of the tractor trailer and pivot it at each curve. To get actual doors he had to cut into the containers’ metal bodies. In order to get the financing he needed to fund his project, he was forced to work with the banks throughout the entire design process, which McMullen was none too thrilled about.
However, all of the hard work was well worth it, as in the end, he has a home unlike any other, in a location where you wouldn’t generally find a home: on top of a pile of rocks, high above the town of Nederland, where winds reach in excess of 100 mph. And his view, according to him, is spectacular.
If you’ve always wondered what the inside of a shipping container home looks like, wonder no more, and take a tour of this beautifully-unique Colorado dwelling.
The entrance to McMullen’s humble abode.
The kitchen. It may be small, but it’s contemporary, has clean lines and is designed to look spacious.
The main living area. Be jealous of that view. I am.
The main living space from another angle. Just as beautiful as the view of the mountains.
If you want to see more cool shipping container homes, check out this post of the 15 coolest designs at DigitalTrends.com.
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