Design Tiny Homes Boomer Couple Escapes Harsh Winters With Minimalist Van Conversion (Video) By Kimberley Mok Writer McGill University Cornell University Kimberley Mok is a former architect who covered architecture and the arts for Treehugger starting in 2007. our editorial process Twitter Twitter Kimberley Mok Updated March 22, 2019 Video screen capture. Alternative Homes Share Twitter Pinterest Email Design Tiny Homes Architecture Interior Design Green Design Urban Design This tasteful van home features a comfortable interior, and includes a removable bed to allow for transporting larger cargo. People do van conversions for a wide range of reasons: some want to travel full-time as outdoor enthusiasts or photographers, or while working on their own businesses; for others, it facilitates touring around as authors or chefs. For Wendy and Larry, converting a van into a stealthy home-on-wheels meant that they could escape the harsh Michigan winters. The couple recently completed their conversion with the help of van-home builder Ross Lukeman of Alternative Homes (previously), which we can see here in this short video tour: The couple's home has been built out of an extended-length 2011 Freightliner Sprinter van, which they have appropriately named "Morty" (it used to be a casket salesman's vehicle). Inside, there's plenty of headroom and legroom, as the couple aimed for an open-plan layout that emphasizes enough space to move around, while concentrating storage, sitting, sleeping and other functions to the sides and rear. The pair endeavoured to create an interior that feels "European" -- thanks to the minimalistic surfaces of wood and fabric, and unfussy custom cabinetry fronted with IKEA doors. The kitchen has a truck fridge, a small sink with a telescoping faucet, and lots of space to prepare food. More appliances, like the microwave, are hidden behind a sliding tambour door under the bed. Alternative Homes/Video screen capture © Alternative Homes Alternative Homes/Video screen capture Alternative Homes/Video screen capture We like the upholstered bench that can turn into a single-bed (Larry likes to nap on this), but which also functions as a dining area with the convenient RV-style swivel table. Underneath the bench is an emergency portable toilet, and it's also where the diesel heating system is hidden. Alternative Homes/Video screen capture Alternative Homes/Video screen capture The back of the van features a huge "garage" of sorts, with a bed resting on top of a steel-strut platform. One highlight of the design is that the bed and struts are removable, in order to allow for transport of larger cargo -- such as equipment for Larry's band. Alternative Homes/Video screen capture Of course, a lot of the technical elements (such as the electrical system) require much forethought in a van conversion, and it seems that this conversion has organized it pretty well. Plenty of intriguing design ideas here; to see more, visit Alternative Homes.