Shed-like Tinhouse is a triumph of utilitarian design

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Tinhouse measures 70 sq m (753 sq ft)(Credit: David Barbour)

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If you tell someone their house looks like a shed, it isn't usually taken as a compliment, but Rural Design's Tinhouse was designed that way. Located in a rural plot in Scotland's Isle of Skye, the appealing home echoes the modest agricultural buildings that dot the area.

Tinhouse was designed so that it could mostly be assembled by a single person. The few times that help was needed, when installing the steel beams for example, a social event was made of the process, like an old-fashioned barn raising.

The home looks very utilitarian from the outside, with its corrugated aluminum cladding softened only a little by wooden sliding doors and deck. The interior measures 70 sq m (753 sq ft) and is warmer and more inviting, arranged as a simple cabin wth a single bedroom, lounge area, kitchen, and bathroom. There's plenty of natural light inside thanks to multiple windows and skylights, and heat comes from a wood-burner.

Recycled timber was used to create pocket doors, simple wooden dowels serve as coat pegs, and leftover cement was used in the shower. Some of the furniture, including the bed and seating, was made using leftover timber, and Douglas Fir offcuts were used to make the bedside tables.

Tinhouse is relatively cheap for an architect-designed house of its type in the UK, and cost £110,000 (US$145,000) in total. The home is competing against houses worth several times more in British architecture's most prestigious housing award. It's available for rent as a vacation cottage from Rural Design.

Source: Rural Design

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