A Wonderfully Wild Shipping Container House Has a Vintage Jukebox, Contemporary Art, and a Ton of Personality

We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Shipping container house with mural on side
Credit: Rob Depiazza

Name: Rob Depiazza, teenage daughter, middle-aged rat terrier
Location: St. Augustine, Florida
Type of home: Shipping container house
Size: 1600 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years, owned

Credit: Rob Depiazza

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: We lost our home of 32 years when a massive oak tree blew down in Hurricane Irma (while we were hunkered down inside) and totally destroyed it. Since I had been working with an architect on an artist studios project I wanted to build out of shipping containers, I made the spontaneous decision to build our new house out of containers. Thirty months later (February 2020), we moved in. I designed it with the architect and was the general contractor on the project working on site daily whilst (barely) running my screen printing business and recovering from four hip replacement surgeries only months before the hurricane hit. It’s a crazy ass story that nearly cost me my sanity yet remarkably turned out quite well.

Credit: Rob Depiazza

I have been in the visual arts literally since I was 12 when I learned the art of screen printing from a former Disney illustrator who had a shop in Costa Mesa, California, where I grew up. I moved to Florida in 1977 and started my own shop, Screen Arts, at age 17 and have been running it ever since. In 2004, I took some unused space in the screen arts building and started a low-brow, pop, new contemporary art gallery, Space:Eight, which ran for 10 years. My home (and business) has always been an extension of my personality, which features bold colors, lots of art, and vintage mid-century furniture.

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Late ’50s kid’s television show

Credit: Rob Depiazza

What is your favorite room and why? The house is very open, so most spaces are contiguous, but I would have to say the living/dining room since it’s covered in art, has a working ’50s jukebox and television set, and features a restaurant dining booth.

Credit: Rob Depiazza

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? I have owned several pieces of Paul McCobb Planner Group furniture since the ’80s. To finish the last room in the house (literally last weekend), I needed a desk and coffee table. As luck would have it, both pieces popped up at an auction a few hours away. I bid and won both items online and drove down to Sarasota to pick them up.

Credit: Rob Depiazza

Any advice for creating a home you love? DON’T BE TIMID.

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