My name is Georjie (she/they), and I have built my own 'tiny home' affectionately known as Bluebell (see photos below). I started off with almost zero experience in building, I could barely use a drill and had no practical understanding of engineering or architecture. On starting the project - and throughout the majority of the building process - I had no access to internet at my workshop space or home. Therefore, no youtube! Working in an old barn on an isolated hill, I also had no teacher or consistent physical help. I relied entirely on intuition - something we all have - which I was excited to learn is enough of a groundwork to use basic tools and materials. Then, accompanied with determination and a dose of perseverance, I trialled-and-errored my way into gaining a deeper understanding of woodwork and construction principals.
It was nothing short of an enlightenment to learn that building, at least in fundamentals and everyday basics, was really simple! How had I been lead to believe (through direct/indirect comments and more problematically, deeply challenging ideology) that this hugely approachable and crucial life-skill was so far from reach? That it was not just physically out of my potential, but that I couldn't really trust my hands to do as 'good' of a job as a man. My mind started unpicking years worth of comments, social examples, media/imagery and prominently my educational experiences. All of it had enforced a narrative that it is not a woman's place, it's just not the way of things.
Developing my building skills has been the most empowering and important experience of my entire life. Nothing has brought me the same sense of confidence, excitement and independence as such a simple set of skills. I am no master, but I'm determined that this is something all women should get the fair and equal chance to explore and learn should they want to, for both their own ability to live independently without reliance on others for basic tasks, and for creative/artistic pursuits that require basic understandings of tools.
The dream behind Bluebell was to manifest a little modest home, providing simple and basic comforts, made entirely with conscious and sustainable approaches. The project was started with no building experience, no materials or specific plans, and evolved as an exploratory learning journey in construction, creativity and independence.