FSBO/House Tour: Mia's Floating Oasis

(We're re-posting this today because Mia's preparing to start a land-based life. She's looking for a serious buyer for her lovely floating cottage, and so has reduced the price substantially. We're actually surprised it hasn't sold -- where else in the Bay Area could you find such a great home for this price?)

Name: Mia
Location: Redwood City, California
Size: 36 feet (700 sq. ft.?)
Years lived in: 5
Price: $125,000 $85,000 (with possible owner financing)

Eight or nine years ago Mia bought a World War II transport vessel, gutted it, and spent two years making it into a floating oasis. There's cunningly placed storage everywhere, and lots of mirrors for reflecting light (there's even one that can cover the porthole in the door -- it's one of the things we remember from when the boat was on one of the first Small Space Big Style episodes a few years ago).

A designer, Mia's now selling her tranquil home and starting a life on land with her beau. We've visited several times, and can attest to the floating cottage's ability to make you instantly feel calm and at home. Email Mia at: designmpf (at) yahoo (dot) com.

My style: Whimsical, eclectic

The inspiration for my home: Pirate ship/zen bedroom

Favorite element: Being in the water!

Biggest challenge in designing my home: Small space

What friends say about my home: Wow! Tranquil and fun

Biggest embarrassment in my home: None

Proudest DIY: Everything. Painted floors, overall design, space management

Biggest indulgence with respect to my home: Bathroom mosaic tile

Best advice given or received: Small spaces are great


Mia's one of those people who can find treasures at flea markets, salvage yards, thrift stores, and even places like TJMaxx.

Antique hardware on an old daybed and antique cabinets

All built-in since it is a small space, and a moving boat!

All white in bedroom for a clean, crisp feel
Yellow in main room goes with "old world" decor

Handpainted hardwood floors
Checkerboard is classic and whimsical

Tiles and Stone:
Pale green Italian tumbled mosaic marble tiles in the bathroom reminds me of sea glass (it's from a store that's since closed)

Window Treatments:
Woven grass in bedroom

Built-in queen with storage

Thanks, Mia!

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FSBO stands for For Sale By Owner. Readers are welcome to submit their own FSBOs. Write to us:
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(Edited from a post originally published 09.20.07)