START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good

Living Little: Take Inspiration from Tiny Homes

weeHouse exterior

3. weeHouses

Designed by Alchemy Architects principal Geoffrey Warner, weeHouses are small, energy-efficient, factory-built dwellings customized to each customer and site. Back in 2003, when a customer requested a small retreat built for under $50,000, Warner responded by designing the original weeHouses’ Arado design and erecting it on his client’s Wisconsin land. The results commanded big attention, and Warner received a deluge of calls asking for information, and replication, of the design. Thus launched his weeHouse endeavor, today with multiple plans that are customized to each situation.
weeHouse interior

Small-space living lessons from the weeHouse:

1. Customize: Every weeHouse has some custom element, whether it’s something as simple as tile selection or as complex as a completely new floor plan. “We like to make site visits, as it helps us relate more quickly and fully to our clients’ needs and dreams and helps us fully appreciate each site’s hidden potential,” Warner says. Along with their small size, affordability and customization, quick delivery is a weeHouse selling point. Depending on size and style, Alchemy can design, build and deliver a weeHouse in nine months to any location in the United States, including Hawaii and Alaska.

2. Great outdoors: Floor-to-ceiling low-emissivity windows allow weeHouses to be efficient while connecting with their natural surroundings. Designed for passive-solar gain, the large windows also allow the sun to help heat the small interior. Conversely, white rubber roofs reflect summertime heat, helping keep temperatures inside comfortable.

3. Cold comfort: It’s easy to heat a tiny space with a single element. In this case, a wood-burning stove efficiently and inexpensively heats the whole home. Other weeHouses in cold climates employ in-floor radiant heat.

4. Material matters:
High-quality materials become affordable when you’re talking about such a small space. weeHouse exteriors are offered in recyclable corrugated steel or corn crib siding from FSC-certified or local sources.

Read more about weeHouses.

Read more: Home, ,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love

Jessica Kellner

Jessica Kellner is the editor of Natural Home & Garden magazine, a national sustainable home and lifestyle magazine. She is dedicated to helping readers create more sustainable, delightful homes that are in tune with the natural world. She is also the author of Housing Reclaimed: Sustainable Homes for Next to Nothing, published by New Society Publishers in autumn of 2011. Email her at


+ add your own
8:53PM PDT on Apr 3, 2012

Great ideas. Don't think I'd have a problem living in one.

4:20AM PST on Feb 18, 2012

These are cute houses, but I would feel like I was being suffocated in them.

11:30PM PST on Feb 2, 2012

Thank you.

12:19PM PST on Feb 2, 2012

Love it!

8:47AM PST on Feb 2, 2012


8:42AM PST on Feb 2, 2012

I love the house! Easy to clean too!!!!

7:10PM PST on Feb 1, 2012

Thanks for the interesting article....all things are relative.

12:39PM PST on Feb 1, 2012

I am all for downsizing and getting rid of what we don't need - but tiny to me is just tiny without comfort and 'room to grow and move'.
Thanks - I admire the ideas and efficiencies.

Please sign my petition:

9:32AM PST on Feb 1, 2012

I love this!! Thank you for getting this info out.

4:12AM PST on Feb 1, 2012

Thank you

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Keep on great working!! I didn’t expect that I will get such great thing from here. Helly F. Helly F.
on Popular Diet Plan Gives Vegetarians a Chance
1 minute ago

Thank you.

Yes, I do: vegan and mostly raw :)

Thank you for this very informative article.


Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.

site feedback


Problem on this page? Briefly let us know what isn't working for you and we'll try to make it right!