An Old Boat House Is Now a Cozy 296-Square-Foot Backyard Tiny Home

published Dec 14, 2023

An Old Boat House Is Now a Cozy 296-Square-Foot Backyard Tiny Home

published Dec 14, 2023
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Square feet
Sq ft

“In January of 2023 I moved out of state for the first time,” begins Stephanie Hubert. “I packed my car to the brim with clothes, pillows, and pictures of loved ones (among other things) and drove myself over 1,200 miles from central North Carolina to Austin, Texas.” 

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“The only piece of furniture I managed to fit in the back of my notoriously small bright blue hatchback was an antique cedar chest that my grandmother gifted to me before she died. It barely fit nestled behind the back of the driver’s seat, but I knew I couldn’t leave it behind. It’s covered in the dents and scratches of its past lives (plus a few more from the move) and I love everything about it. It now sits proudly in my studio-for-one holding memories of the past and hopes for the future,” she continues.

“The unit I’ve made home sits on the back property of a single family home in South Austin and was renovated from an old boat house. The A-frame ceiling meant to accommodate its vessel in the off season now adds extra height and spaciousness to the sub-300-square-foot interior. As a renter, I had some limitations to consider when designing my space, so I focused on elements I could control. I took my time figuring out what the space needed to feel both functional and delightfully mine. I let it evolve,” Hubert describes.

“I rearranged the furniture more times than I can count as I slowly added pieces over time. While the space is zoned for sleep, living, work, etc., instead of trying to fight the studio layout, I decided to intentionally blur the lines between zones. A great example is my grandma’s cedar chest, which functions both as my nightstand and as a side table (or extra seat in a pinch) for my living space.” 

“I scoured Facebook Marketplace, local flea markets, and vintage shops for unique pieces that fit my budget and aesthetic. I’ve never felt like the design process is finished, nor do I have a desire for it to be. Home is ever-shifting, changing to meet the needs of our current season, and I enjoy approaching home design in a way that keeps me open to the pull of creativity.” 



  • Main Living Spaces — BEHR “Pure White”
  • Bathroom Accent Wall — BEHR “Cypress Vine”


  • Loveseat and Rocking Chair — Thrifted
  • Floating Bookshelf — IKEA 
  • Pillow Inserts — IKEA
  • Throw Blanket — Anthropologie
  • Ottoman — Thrifted/DIY
  • Cedar Chest — Heirloom



  • Memory Foam Pillows — Amazon 
  • Goose Down Comforter — Wayfair
  • Cotton Duvet — Wayfair
  • Table Lamp and Art Print — Thrifted



  • Secretary Desk — Vintage/Thrifted
  • Ratan Chair — Vintage/Thrifted
  • Mirror — Vintage/Thrifted
  • Stained Glass Window – Vintage/Thrifted
  • Lamp — IKEA
  • Original Poems — Christopher Poindexter

Thanks, Stephanie!

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