Filling a growing demand for sustainable, off-grid living, Ecospace creates bespoke tiny houses for clients around the country, with many of them featuring Abodo timber.
As New Zealanders search for new ways of living amid skyrocketing property prices, and with many aiming for greater self-sufficiency and a closer relationship with nature, tiny homes have become increasingly popular.
Creating high quality, custom-designed prefab minor dwellings, cabins, and tiny homes - Ecospace owner Gavin Barr holds tight to the sustainability aspect of the movement towards compact living.
“We choose to use products that are not only sustainable and eco conscious in the production stages, but also ensure we are providing warm, energy efficient, healthy homes that perform over the lifetime of the building,” he says.
“Using good quality New Zealand-made products fits with this ethos, and our tikanga principles. Specifying products like Abodo for our cladding is a great point of difference that we are proud to represent with our Ecospace homes.”
Oasis in the Heads
Gavin’s own home in Mangawhai Heads is a case in point. Dubbed ‘Oasis in the Heads’, the home is made up of a collection of structures positioned around a central outdoor enclave, with a firepit and plenty of space for the extended family to spread out and enjoy the Northland sun.
Clad in the same Vulcan Cladding in Protector – Nero is another Ecospace ‘Waiheke’ cabin, which also includes a dual shipping container repurposed to provide extra bedrooms for the family.
“My favourite of the coatings is Nero,” says Gavin. “I just love the deep black colour. It blends well with the WB10 and WB12 Profile that we use a lot, and is a nice contrast to the Structural Insulated Panel (SIPs) panel and dark colour choices in the home. We do tend to have a black / white internal theme with most of our builds, so Nero works well with the black fixtures and fittings.”
Rakiura Tiny Home
Moving to the other end of the country, Ecospace’s Rakiura design is a compact 6m x 2.9m space that manages to fit a bedroom loft, lounge, kitchen and bathroom, as well as off-grid components, which allow all necessary utilities to run in any location.
“The design brief from our client was to replicate his existing, high performance, energy efficient home built from SIPs, in a way that would allow him to easily move it across the South Island with the changing location of his new role,” explains Gavin.
Due to the thermal modification process Vulcan undergoes in manufacturing, this choice also provides a good deal of longevity for the structure, which is sure to encounter some extreme weather.
Ecospace offers a variety of Abodo profiles for their clients to choose from, with the most popular profile being Vulcan Cladding WB10 Profile 138x20mm, and the most common finish being Protector – Nero. Recent exceptions to this rule include a pool house Kelmarna Cabin in Auckland, which used Abodo’s Vulcan Primed Bevelback profile, and Abodo’s Ohinewai office, which takes the aesthetic further with Vulcan interior panelling.
In terms of the build process, Gavin, a professional builder as well as business owner, appreciates the malleability and strength of the Vulcan product.
“My team shares the same views - when we first started using the product, we were amazed at how dense it was to work with compared to other finishing timbers such as cedar. It’s so nice to work with and very strong. There’s nothing like getting to the end of a long run of wall and looking back at the sleek lines especially if it’s already had its factory coat.”