Beth Anne Norrgard once lived in a 1929 east Dallas home: 1,148 square feet, two bedrooms, one bath, and a huge backyard, she said. Now, Norrgard’s house is affixed to a wooden trailer with a six by 13 foot interior. Norrgard lives in a tiny house.
Norrgard will be exhibiting her home at the Tiny House Village Expo for Earth Day Texas 2016 in Fair Park from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday to Sunday. For the past two years, Norrgard has exhibited the only tiny house. This year, Norrgard was asked to organize the event. There will be 10 houses on display and open to tour.
Norrgard said there is no set definition of a tiny house; generally, they are under 200 square feet.
Norrgard said tiny houses are part of the Earth Day celebration because they are a prime example of sustainable living. The expo shows people a different lifestyle and promotes tiny houses as a mainstream housing option, she said.
Those interested in a small carbon footprint and who are able to let go of many material possessions make great tiny house owners, Norrgard said. However, she said you do not have to live primitively like a monk to thrive in the homes.
“It’s a life of intention, you’re very intentional in how you spend your time and the items that you keep,” Norrgard said. “You certainly can live well, you’re just doing it in a smaller way.”
Norrgard said she lives well in her tiny house with its custom stained class, chandelier and porch.
Norrgard helps others interested in the lifestyle reach their goal. Most people who own tiny houses build them on their own. Norrgard said she holds do-it-yourself tiny house workshops with her group in the Metroplex. Demere O’Dell is a member and will also be exhibit her house in the show this weekend.
O’Dell said it took 11 months to build her tiny house. She said as an artist she loves finishing projects she makes with her own hands, but making a tiny house was especially satisfying.
She said she is looking forward to the exhibit because she enjoys watching the first moment people look at a tiny house.
“They look at it like a dollhouse,” O’Dell said. “It’s amazing to watch.”