Our regularly scheduled Walden Wednesday post will be up next week, but we have some updates on the cabbage front that we didn’t want to put off!

That's a fear smile Drew's wearing. He's not a fan of heights.

That’s a fear smile Drew’s wearing. He’s not a fan of heights.

Look who ended up on a ladder over the weekend! We installed the service panel to bring electricity to our cabbage. Now we’re just waiting for our inspection. Once we get the go-ahead from the state, the local power company will hook it to the grid, and the glamping stage of this move can begin! Eventually, we do want to go off grid, but that’s a long-term project. For now, I’m excited just to be able to run Drew’s swamp cooler, not to mention charging my cell phone.

The next step is to build the interior walls and install the wiring before we insulate it. This means we need to get moving on our floor plan ASAP!

Almost a month has passed since we posted our blank floor plan to this blog and asked begged you all to help us design it. Some of our awesome readers even delivered! Keep on reading for a few guest submissions, and the plan we finally ended up choosing. 

Layout by Bryan Tanner. I'm so jealous of his software!

Layout by Bryan Tanner.

My brother-in-law, Bryan, has been a constant source of help and knowledge throughout this whole process. He also came up with this layout. I’m so jealous of his snazzy floor plan software! I like that this plan incorporates a washer and dryer, along with a full-sized tub. Since Drew and I want kids in the very near future, a bathtub is probably a better plan than a shower stall. I also like that the main room is fairly open. Drew and I weren’t sold on the bedroom in the front alcove though. We love those windows and want to spend a lot of time enjoying the view.

Layout by Gail Williamson

Drew’s friend, Gail, sent us this layout on Facebook. I love the idea of a fireplace and the bookcase! If we did not already have a hand-me-down wood stove to use, I would definitely snag that. I also like that she included a bedroom in the back — that is what we ended up deciding on. My uncle also made a pitch for the kitchen in the window alcove, and I have to admit that I was tempted. It would be a bright and sunny kitchen and we’d have a great view while washing dishes.

My stepdad, Steve, was full of ideas during the process, too. He sketched a master copy of the floor plan on graph paper that we could copy and modify. He also found lots of awesome layouts on Pinterest and sent them to me for inspiration, answered all of my clueless questions, and then helped me chalk out lines on the cabbage floor to test them out in the space.

In the end, we decided to go with something like this:

Sorry about the lousy photo quality! I couldn't get my mom's printer to scan, so I ended up snapping a photo of the floor plan with my iPhone instead.

Sorry about the lousy photo quality! I couldn’t get my mom’s printer to scan, so I ended up snapping a photo of the floor plan with my iPhone instead.

We used to live in an apartment with a walk-in closet between the bedroom and the bathroom, and I loved how convenient it was for getting dressed in the morning. What’s the point of designing your own space if you can’t include little things like that? We’re going to punch out an egress window in the bedroom so we can escape if there’s a fire, and a smaller one over the kitchen sink because I like to look outside while I’m washing the dishes. We’ll also stick a small window in the bathroom to help with ventilation. Good thing windows are (relatively) cheap. The hot water tank is going under the stairs. Up until a few minutes ago, we had a coat closet planned, but then I remembered we were going to need stairs, so away it went.

There are a few drawbacks to this plan. For one thing, the wood stove is massive for such a small space. It’s a free wood stove, though, and beggars can’t be choosers, so there you go. The bedroom is also on the big side, but that’s because we’re designing around our massive dresser, which we found at an antique store and then painted. Sure, we could get a new  dresser, but we love this one, and it perfectly holds our paired-down wardrobe. (For awhile, we thought we could try using my grandma’s old steamer chest as a clothes closet, but after trying that out at my parents’ house, we noped out hard. You can’t open it without dragging it away from the wall first, and then you have to shove it back, and that’s just a pain in the butt.)

We’re still going to need a few tweaks here and there. For one thing, I think I need to make the utility room a bit wider to accommodate the washer and the dryer. Ideally we’d have a stacking model for such a small space, but we are on the broke end of the homesteading financial spectrum, so what can you do? We’ll probably figure out a few other things that are wrong with it the next time we go up to the cabbage and actually try chalking the whole thing out.

And the loft? In a year or two, we want to raise the roof of the cabbage so you can actually stand up in it. Then it will become the master bedroom. With any luck, we’ll have a kid to stick in the downstairs bedroom by then. (And, yes, before everybody starts freaking out on me, we already know that it’s not enough to just lift the roof up and stick a kneeling wall under it. We’ll reinforce the whole wall.)  But until our roof-raising party, the loft is probably going to function as a library/guest room/writing nook/cat paradise.

So what do you think? Will it work? Are we crazy? Is there something obvious I’m missing? It’s not too late for last-minute revisions, so let us know.


Floor Plan Update
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3 thoughts on “Floor Plan Update

  • August 26, 2015 at 3:48 pm

    Wow! You two have been busy,and its amazing in a small space how many variations you can get. I vote with Mindy, I would want a window in the kitchen also, not only for the view, but for the times you have to air a kitchen out. I love the fact that you are thinking ahead to a wee one in the future, they will love the house too. You will need screens on your windows to keep the Nickster in, he will love the bay window too, and I expect to see him snoozing there enjoying the sunshine. I like Bryan’s plan but want to ask him about the stove in the kitchen, is that a commercial stove? Whatever you choose, I am sure that there will be plusses and minuses, but the bottom line is….its YOUR’S!

  • September 10, 2015 at 10:59 am

    Love reading about layouts! We are in redesign mode for our house and using a free (for the basic level) online program called Planner 5d. It was super easy to use and we liked that we could do a 3D fly through to see how it all works. Here is our plan for the remodel if you are curious 🙂 I am enjoying your homesteading adventures!


    • September 11, 2015 at 8:10 am

      Hi Lauren! Thanks for the comment, and also the link to the program! I’m sure we’ll be using this in the future for designing our raise-the-roof party (next year) and kitchen expansion (probably year after next.) Your blog looks great!


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