11/15 Unique murphy bed-desk combo in tiny house

Gary Martens demonstrates how his computer desk converts to a bed.

Gary Martens demonstrates how his computer desk converts to a bed.

Don’t do anything stupid for the first twelve months after your spouse dies.

That was the advice given to Gary Martens of Kleefeld. And if that also means waiting a year to move from your house of three thousand square feet into one barely the size of a two car garage, then Martens followed that advice to a T.

In January 2015, Martens’ wife passed away. Thirteen months later, he began the adventure of constructing a tiny house. His journal entry for February 11, 2016, reads:

Went to see Kahlia Wiebe @ Grunthal Lumber to begin drawing the house. $250 deposit opened an account.

Martens then spent the next six months constructing a house that stands twenty feet by twenty-four feet. After putting in more than four hundred hours of labour, this tiny house is now his new home.

If you step inside the house, you will walk into an open area with only three real rooms. The largest of the rooms consists of a sitting area in the corner, sleeping quarters, kitchen and library. A hallway underneath a two hundred square foot loft takes you to his bathroom and then a multi-use room used as the mechanical room, laundry room, tool shed and walk-in closet.

“I like the idea of a multi-use house,” explains Martens.

He says a bedroom in a traditional home is largely wasted space during the day, unless you enjoy an afternoon snooze, as Martens does on cold, cloudy days. So, instead of dedicating a room entirely to sleeping quarters, Martens uses a Murphy bed. The bed folds down out of the wall for the night and then during the day is folded back up and becomes a computer desk.

“It’s a very simple operation, it’s just so slick I don’t even have to clean off my desk,” says Martens. “It’s a very good use of space I think.”

According to Martens, the hardest part of purging was getting rid of his many books. An avid reader and writer, Martens says only books that fell into one of three categories were kept. The book had to be something he knew he would read again in the future, or it had to have sentimental value or be something he could use as a reference.

Read more and watch the video – https://steinbachonline.com/local/tiny-house-on-the-prairie

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Elaine Walker

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