See how this California retreat makes the most of indoor-outdoor living.
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Nestled in the Santa Monica Mountains just outside California's Topanga State Park lies a 320-square-foot home tucked under the trees. The tiny house capitalizes on its picturesque location with plentiful windows and a wraparound deck, which offers a restful respite after a hike on nearby trails and a home for a sunrise yoga session. For sisters Grace Emmons and Maddy Hirshan, who designed the home together, it's the perfect indoor-outdoor retreat.

modern tiny house facade tree swing path
Credit: Courtesy of Grace Emmons

"We wanted a beautiful home but to keep it small so that the landscape was really in the forefront," Maddy says. "The tiny house was the best way to make the most of the natural landscape here."

overhead view tiny house wood details
Credit: Courtesy of Grace Emmons

Past the streamlined exterior, the home's connection to nature continues indoors with an aesthetic Maddy describes as "modern-meets-mountain." The style manifests itself through sleek furnishings combined with rustic elements, like exposed beams, wood floors, and a live-edge countertop that might serve as a dining area, bar, or workspace, depending on the day. White walls, 14-foot lofted ceilings, and windows on all sides give the tiny home a bright, open look despite its small size.

white kitchen tiny house wood elements
Credit: Courtesy of Grace Emmons

The home originated as a pre-fabricated unit that the sisters customized with a large deck and outfitted with modern conveniences, including a tankless water heater, electricity, and Wi-Fi. Although the home itself is miniature, it features full-size amenities, including a refrigerator, gas range, apron-front sink, king-size bed, and walk-in shower.

modern minimalist tiny house bathroom vessel sink
Credit: Courtesy of Grace Emmons

The bathroom, which is located underneath the lofted bedroom, is also home to a washer/dryer combination unit that provides complete laundry facilities in half the space.

tiny house staircase white cabinetry wood detail
white bedding upper level tiny house
Left: Credit: Courtesy of Grace Emmons
Right: Credit: Courtesy of Grace Emmons

Vital to the functionality of any tiny home, storage reveals itself in unexpected places. Within the staircase leading up to the bedroom, for example, storage cabinets are tucked under each step, while a larger door beneath the landing opens to a closet. Inside, pull-out racks allow easy access to hanging clothes.

dark velvet sofa tiny house living room
Credit: Courtesy of Grace Emmons

The living area, complete with a green velvet sofa and wall-mounted TV, is situated a few steps up from the main floor. The stairway's treads are hinged; each one lifts up to reveal a hidden storage compartment. Open shelves put wall space to work throughout.

sitting area outcropping chairs lanterns ottoman mountains
Credit: Courtesy of Grace Emmons

Today, the tiny home is listed on Airbnb as a modern getaway in a beautiful natural setting. "We put a lot of time and energy into this home," Maddy says, "so it really brings me a lot of joy to see other people enjoying it."

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