DIY home builds are never easy, and rarely cheap, but one ambitious couple managed to create a beautiful tiny home for under $10,000. Taylor and Steph Bode from Nomadic Roots created their sustainable 560-square-foot ‘Earthship’ mainly using reclaimed and repurposed materials.

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couple sitting outside a home

a one story home and its front yard

Inspired by the design principles of visionary architect Mike Reynolds and his company, Earthship Biotecture, the couple focused on creating a sustainable home that would employ passive and sustainable features to stay comfortable throughout the seasons, without air conditioning or heat sources.

a home with white doors surrounded by windows

interior of a home with wooden furniture

Related: Firefighter’s self-built tiny house is an earthship on wheels

Once they found the perfect lot, the couple moved into a 14′ yurt while they slowly started the building process. To begin the project, they planned the home’s perimeters to maximize its potential thermal mass. Built into a south-sloping hill, the east, west, and north walls are buried underground, insulating the home and providing stable indoor temperatures. According to the owners, “The stylistic elements were secondary to creating a functionally competent structure that was well-suited for its environment.”

purple flowers in a garden

a home in the forefront with a forest in the background

To create the frame for the house, the couple cut down two young redwood trees from an adjacent grove. The siding and trim is crafted from old redwood fence boards. For the rest of the construction materials, Taylor and Steph scoured various sites to find discarded materials that could be reclaimed. They found new uses for countless thrown-away items such as automobile tires, glass bottles and aluminum cans. All of the home’s windows and doors were salvaged or found for free on Craigslist.

an interior of a home with multiple windows

a wooden home with windows

Although the majority of the walls are buried, the many repurposed windows help flood the interior with an abundance of natural light. The couple created an earthen floor with a mixture of sand, clay, straw and water. After laying the mixture, they finished it with a hemp oil to create a warm, soft look. The Bodes used reclaimed barn wood for the interior walls, and they made or salvaged all their furnishings.

+ Nomadic Roots

Via Apartment Therapy

Photography by Taylor Bode via Nomadic Roots

an interior living space with furniture

an interior space with a bedroom in the background

a night shot of a home with trees in the background

a walkway leading into a wooden home

an interior shot of a tiny home