A 600-Square-Foot House in Portland Aces Scandinavian Secondhand Style

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Credit: Linda Miles

Name: Linda Miles and five chickens! Aretha, Joni, Whitney, Dolly and Robyn
Location: St. Johns Neighborhood — Portland, Oregon
Type of home: House
Size: 600 square feet
Years lived in: 11 months, owned

Credit: Linda Miles
I love that the dining room table was built by two amateur woodworkers — two girlfriends in Idaho.

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: I work for an international education nonprofit. Like many of us during the pandemic, I realized my little apartment in an expensive city wasn’t working for me anymore. I wanted a yard and to be closer to family. My home is one of the oldest in the neighborhood, originally owned by a Portland shipyard manager.

Credit: Linda Miles
The danish gas stove is so welcoming as you walk in the front door. It also heats the whole house.

I love the simplicity and energy efficiency of this small home and feel honored to live here. I’ve had to do everything on an extreme budget, so almost everything you see has been bought from neighbors on OfferUp or at Swedish secondhand stores.

Credit: Linda Miles

It’s a bonus that I now can see my ski hill (Mount Hood) and that the PNW is just magical. This year my thumb is getting greener, and I’m building out a backyard ceramics studio. I like to live in a calm environment where I’m not dependent on devices and the internet. I like to “un-smart” everything. I believe that everything that I need already exists in the world and there’s no need to buy anything for my home that is new.

Credit: Linda Miles
Converted garage-turned-office and guest room

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Secondhand, homemade, and Scandinavian

Credit: Linda Miles
The bedroom is connected to the kitchen, and also, it's all just on painted subfloor.

What is your favorite room and why? My backyard studio! It’s the last room that needs my attention and it has so much potential for play. I can’t wait to build out a home ceramics studio!

Credit: Linda Miles
Outside of the studio

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? I picked up free windows from a neighbor for an upcoming project. I’ll be building my own greenhouse. I also go to the Portland Rebuilding Center for my “treasures”!

Credit: Linda Miles
The future ceramics studio

Any advice for creating a home you love? Fill your home with things that remind of people and places that you love.

This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.