When I was a teenager I had a dream of living in a teepee in the forest. Now, I get to live something very close to that dream. Over the last two months we have been flat out finishing the Belle tent and getting everything ready for me to move in. I’m happy to say that I’m now living in the tent full time and it’s incredible! The Lotus will be my home while I finish building the Tiny House.
I decided to move into the Lotus tent because it allowed me to escape the rent trap and dedicate more time and resources into the construction of my tiny house. I also wanted to showcase another really great concept of alternative, downsized living. When I first saw a Belle tent my first thought was that someone could live really comfortably in one, and that planted the seed that grew into my decision to move in myself!
The tent itself is a 5 meter (16ft) diameter Lotus Belle Outback. The canvas is 350gsm, which is much heavier duty than regular canvas tents. Even the floor is constructed from the same material that many kayaks are made from.
Inside my tent I have everything that I need, and nothing that I don’t. I have power which comes from a very simple 150watt solar system, running hot and cold water, refrigeration with a Waeco Coolfreeze 25 litre fridge. In future videos and articles I will be going into much more detail on these elements.
Keeping warm on the cooler nights is important and The Traveller Stove from UK based company Anevay heats the Lotus Belle tent wonderfully. It’s a tidy little package, and the 4 kilowatt heater does a great job of keeping the tent toasty. To help the heat circulate throughout the tent, I have added a small thermoelectric fan, which actually does make a huge difference in warming the space. At the moment, the Traveller Stove is also what I am using to do all of my cooking on. In the summer, I may find another solution for days when it’s too hot to light the fire.
The Lotus Belle tent is constructed on a custom built platform. The platform is a decagon shape to follow the form of the tent, and is surrounded by a cantilevered deck which provides easy access to the bathroom.
In true treehouse style, tiki-hut-style bathroom is accessed via a rope bridge which joins onto the deck. The roof is made from an old canvas patio umbrella and all of the walls are clad in bamboo that was cut down from a neighbours property. Inside the bathroom, there is a basin, shower (both of which have hot, running water) and a composting toilet.
I’m really excited to now be living in this wonderful and tranquil space. It’s going to be the perfect place for me to work, play, dream and unwind after a hard day. The location of the tent is also geographically much closer to where I am constructing the Tiny House, which means I will be able to work a lot more often on the house and speed up that build too. There will be lots more updates to come!
Photo credits: Amy Kate Photography