Domek is the home of D’Arcy McNaughton and his wife Olivia, as well as their son Osiris and the family cat. It is their permanent residence and sits on a piece of land owned by Olivia’s parents, and it proved to be the only way in which the couple could afford a home without running into massive and lifelong debt, or having the pay monthly rent for something that would not have been theirs in the end. D’Arcy makes a point of it in his recent chat with Exploring Alternatives, which you can see in the video at the bottom of the page.
Unlike most tinies, there is nothing… tiny about Domek. It sits on a 32-foot (9.7-meter) triple-axle trailer, is 8.5-foot (2.6-meter) wide and 13.5 feet (4.1-meter) tall at its highest and, from afar, you’d be excused if you mistook it for a non-moving, two-story house. It has no less than three lofts, a chef-style kitchen, an atrium shower, and even cat features, and can sleep up to six people in total comfort. As D’Arcy explains, it’s the kind of tiny house one builds if one is not inclined to making compromises when switching lifestyles.
technically DIY-ers. D’Arcy runs the Canadian outfit Acorn Tiny Homes, which he founded after word of mouth about his own home got out. Domek is, in fact, Acorn Tiny Homes’ flagship model, so it can be used as basis for another tiny for a paying customer.
Still, it’s an impressive example of what can be achieved in a more compact floorspace. Domek lacks nothing, whether in terms of comfort or functionality. The kitchen is at one end and was designed for a passionate cook in mind (D’Arcy), with oak cabinets, pull-out drawers, 4-burner propane range, granite double sink, dishwasher, full-size double refrigerator, and even a chest freezer tucked away in a corner.
Above the kitchen is loft number one, which is accessed via an aluminum ladder you prop onto the fridge. That space features a floating desk and serves as Olivia’s home office.
The living room is in the middle, under the second loft, which is the master bedroom. The third loft is the kid’s room and has been designed to sleep two. It has gorgeous touches like a fiber optic installed in the roof, which makes it look as if you’re sleeping under the stars. Access to these two lofts is done by means of a storage-integrating staircase, where the final two steps fold into one another to baby-proof the area and allow for more room for movement. At the top of the staircase is the changing area, since neither loft has standing height.
At the other end of the house is the bathroom, which is, again, a rarity among tiny houses. Because neither D’Arcy nor Olivia wanted to give up the comforts of a proper home when they opted for a tiny, D’Arcy put the bathroom into an extension to the trailer. The shower sits in an atrium, so it’s enclosed by glass on all sides and it’s a true beauty, with a rain showerhead and a full-size bathtub. The toilet is a composting one, with a small washing station next to it but plenty of overhead storage.
Domek has in-floor radiant heating and a mini-split AC / heater as backup. Neither D’Arcy nor Olivia mention anything about available floorspace or how big of a budget they needed to build what has become their dream home. For the record, though, Acorn Tiny Homes offers a range of models, both as shells and turnkeys, all of which can be customized, with the cheapest starting at $90,000 CAD and going all the way up to $200,000 CAD (roughly US$70,000 to US$155,400).