TINY: a story about living small: The Interview Tapes

As Christopher Smith approaches his 30th birthday, after a decade of near-constant movement, he decides it is time to plant some roots. A cabin in the Colorado mountains has a been a life-long dream, so he acts on impulse and makes a down payment on a 5-acre parcel of land. Thirty minutes from anywhere, he’s attracted to the wildness of the land, and determined to make a home of it.

The average US house size in 2004 was 2,300 square feet, up from 1,400 square feet in 1970, even as the size of the average family has gotten smaller. What exactly are we doing with all of this extra space, and where are we finding the materials to build more houses on the greater scale? Just as large homes have become part of the default American dream, mortgage payments and home maintenance are accepted as a sign of adulthood. As Christopher decides to build a home, he dives into the tension between settling down and staying adrift, between maturity and wildness, between preserving a parcel of land that he loves, and developing it.

“TINY” is the story of building a house from scratch, a journey that reaches to the very root of the way we live and how we find ourselves at home. It is a meditation on the relationship of home to environment, of surroundings to identity, of quality and simplicity to a life well lived.

(italicized copy written by Merete Mueller)

We recently had a chance to speak (via SKYPE) with Christopher and Merete about their experience building a tiny house as well as making the movie. I have long been an advocate of their project and am excited to share it all with you in their words.

The following interview took place on November 17, 2011 and despite my technical errors (yes, those are the sounds of my keyboard you will be able to hear on the recording) turned out to be one of the most enjoyable 35 minutes I have spent in a long time. To hear the complete interview just click the Play button below.

TINY a story about living small

As mentioned in the interview Smith and Mueller have begun a Kickstarter campaign to help fund the post-production portion of the project. Please take the time to find out more in regards to how YOU can help bring this dynamic story to full fruition!


  1. Ejtigger says

    Looking forward to seeing progress on your place and how you furnish it. Where is Co. did you find land to put this on?
    I am from Aurora.

  2. anotherkindofdrew says

    Christopher and Merete purchased land in Hartsell, CO. You can read more about it here on their blog: http://tiny-themovie.com/a-gathering-storm/

  3. says

    It is always awesome to see another tiny home owner make their way into the world!  Can’t wait to see you finish it!  I just moved into mine a few months ago and I love it.  http://dreadnaughtdarling.com

    • anotherkindofdrew says

      Thank you so much for joining us here at the r(E)volution Kera. I love your Fortune Cookie and am thankful to have you as part of the community!


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