“Tiny living for us is all about family,” says Emma McAllan-Braun, who lives with her husband Joel Braun and their two daughters Isla and Ivy in a 311-square-foot farmhouse-style tiny home in Abbotsford, British Columbia. “It’s about reducing our things and focusing on quality time instead of weighing ourselves down with clutter,” she says. “We’ve learned so much about ourselves.”
The family decided to try tiny living after selling their previous home and while building a larger custom house. “We wanted to do something different and simplify our lives,” Emma says. “We’ve always dreamed of living tiny, so Texture Spray Machine when we sold our last home, we had the perfect opportunity to go for it.”
The bright-white, cedar-clad tiny home, built by Mint Tiny Homes, is set on wheels, but the Braun family is happy leaving it right where it is—on a five-acre parcel of land with a woodland backdrop. “It’s parked on my parents’ property,” Emma says. “It’s perfect for our children to play, and for us as a family to enjoy the outdoors. We love the country and having the ability to hang out in the forest.”
Emma worked with Mint Tiny Homes to design a custom tiny house that suited her family of four and their specific wants—including two separate, enclosed bedrooms for Isla and Ivy and a kitchen large enough for the family to cook and bake together.
Upon entering the tiny home, the kitchen and dining space are the first areas you see. The U-shaped kitchen features open wood shelving, deep wood counters, and plenty of sunlight. “The layout and design were things we really worked on to ensure flow and functionality,” Emma says. “The dining area, though small, allows us to eat at the table as a family.”
The living area, where they also spend time as a family, doubles as a bedroom for the adults and features a sizable pull-out sofa and a fireplace. The large bathroom showcases a stacked washer and dryer and a full-size tub, where the couple can bathe the girls.
Two tall, narrow closets in the living room hold the adults’ clothing, and compartments beneath the staircase store books and toys. In the upstairs bedrooms, compact shelving units with pull-out baskets hold the kids’ clothing
A charcoal-grey standing seam metal roof contrasts with the white-painted cedar siding, which is punctuated by window boxes planted with flowers and greenery. “We went full farmhouse,” Emma says. “There’s white-painted shiplap, warm wood tones, and black finishes throughout the interior; we wanted it to feel cozy.”
To expand the home’s living space and link the interior to the outdoors, the couple built a pine deck off of the front facade, where the family can dine, entertain, craft, and swim. “We purchased a stock tank and made it a swimming pool for our girls to use in the summer,” Emma says. We wanted the deck to be big enough so we could have family over and all hang out together—it’s an extension of the indoor space.”