Tiny Off-Grid Eco-Cabin in Australia Has Everything You Really Need

©. Rachel Mackay

Less truly is more in this gem from Fresh Prince Studio.

We have seen so many tiny houses on wheels over the years, some of which are not so tiny and not so simple, so far from Thoreau's little cabin where he "wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life."

I actually thought about Thoreau's cabin for the first time in a long time, when I saw the Barrington Tops Cabin, built in New South Wales by Alice Nivison and Richie Northcott of Fresh Prince Studio.

Barrington Cabin looking toward river

© Rachel Mackay

It has the same simple form, but is also simple and minimal inside. They never call it a tiny house, even though it is on a chassis; the 160 square foot cabin is mobile because "the pre-fab, portable design means it can perch on the river’s edge, and be towed up the banks if the river rises, to avoid being swept away."

On their website, the designers say that "the brief was to create an off-grid cabin that was simple, sustainable and movable. A comfortable retreat from which people could enjoy the river and surrounding wilderness."

Barrington cabin interior

© Rachel Mackay

Designed to have a minimum footprint both physically and environmentally, the cabin incorporates solar power, sustainable plywood lining, a composting toilet, reconstituted sawdust and wax cladding and exposed copper and brass plumbing.

Exterior Barrington cabin showing siding

© Rachel Mackay

The cladding is Weathertex, an Australian product made from "forest thinnings and other industry by-products in the production process [which] means timber that is not suitable for sawn timber harvesting can be utilised, rather than wasted."

Given that each kilogram of Weathertex has sequestered 1.633 kilograms of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, the carbon stored in Weathertex timber is greater than the direct emissions produced at the Weathertex factory during its manufacture, which means that Weathertex products have a negative carbon footprint.
Kitchen closeup in Barrington cabin

© Rachel Mackay

The plan is also minimal and simple: a generous bathroom at one end, a bed at the other, and a very minimal kitchen with tiny fridge and two-burner gas stove in the middle.

Living area with kitchen

© Rachel Mackay

It helps that this is in Australia where you can have those wonderful jalousie windows, and big opening doors to the outside. It's also easier to be minimalist when you are designing a vacation cabin rather than a full-time home. But I am not sure how much more you really need, other than wifi.

Its humble fourteen square metres contains everything required to live a simple, uncluttered life.
Barrington cabin glowing at night

© Rachel Mackay

Indeed. You can rent it here.

Barrington cabin bookshelf

© Rachel Mackay