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“We added the desk at the foot of the bed after a boatbuilder who attended our March open house told us it was a common space-maximizing configuration onboard ships,” says Bovee.

The Harpoon House’s second floor serves as a bedroom, office, and indoor/outdoor den: a sleeping loft contains a double mattress and low desk, while sliding doors open up onto the middle eco-roof, lushly planted with sedum, licorice ferns, coastal strawberries, camas, and creeping thyme. A small patio on the roof, Bovee notes, was “made to fit a table, and nothing more.”

That matter-of-factness rather efficiently sums up the entire home’s design philosophy: build and buy exactly what you need, nothing more. “We’re surrounded by cafés, shops, services, and public outdoor space,” says Bovee. Far from seeing their Lilliputian domain as a retreat, they plan to continue inviting friends and neighbors into their home for events like their seventh annual summer ice cream social, featuring 20 homemade flavors. “There’s no need to have a mini eco-system that’s just for us,” Bovee says. “We want to engage with our community.”