William Root constructed and completed this Tiny House project after his freshman year at Pratt.
The thought of summer vacations evoke thoughts of flings, new friends and the occasional awkward family vacation. For me this is what I thought was the general consensus for myself and my peers' summer vacations until I met William Root.
Hailing from Albuquerque, NM, Will Root is a fellow sophomore at Pratt Institute for Industrial Design. Will is one of the characters that can only be found in an art school, attracting a veritable cult following on campus with his iconic structuralist book bag, which he designed and made several versions of the bag during foundation year. In one of our many all-nighters together, we inquired about each others lives and in turn this past summer.
For most students, the reality of the summer is working to pay off their debts. Will realized that working a minimum wage job would pay for a mere two weeks at Pratt. Not content to rely on tips, he opted to think big—big enough to cover an entire year at school. With an entrepreneurial mindset that only the school of hard knocks could teach, he set out to build (and sell) in his words "The best Tiny House ever made."
In the time it usually takes to adjust to being back home, Will finalized his design for a Tiny House and set out on construction within the week. In a rented lot near the lumber yard, he set out creating the project that would consume his entire summer. Tiny Houses, all though not definitively defined, do tend to have some common characteristics, mainly that their proportions and size are constrained to the size of a trailer.
Still, one of Will's goals was to make a no compromise Tiny House. Where many other designs made the house as small as possible, he made his as large as state laws would permit. Thus, he was able to incorporate a full-size kitchen, tiled bathroom, and a 9×13 sized deck. In total the house encompasses a mere 160 sq. ft, which is small even by NYC standards, where the legal minimum is 400 sq. ft.
Will expressed his concerns with creating a livable space on a budget while remaining appeal to the hesitant buyer, and the finish and decorations are tasteful yet still within financial reach. Ultimately, the project was a success: a woman in New Orleans purchased the house, and Will's profit is going directly towards his tuition at Pratt. If it didn't sell, he optimistically said that he simply would have lived in it on campus.
Over the course of two and half months, the house was nearly completed—95% done according to Will. His story illustrates not only his own tenacity and perseverance but the power of conviction when it comes to creativity. We've all had great ideas that we knew would work but were perhaps too ambitious for anyone besides ourselves to believe in, and so we let those ideas sink back into the unfinished bucket list of our lives. William not only inspired me but led me to a realization on the importance of a strong inner voice. That voice comes in many forms, but however it comes to you, hold onto and let it keep resonating within you. Otherwise you may be living a life full of tiny accomplishments and not Tiny Houses.
If you would like to contact Will you can do so by his email, firstname.lastname@example.org