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Natural Building Workshops

Page history last edited by Deanne Bednar 11 years, 7 months ago

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Strawbale Construction: Oxford Kid's Cottage, Oxford, MI.


   Learn Natural Building in our 2009 Workshops starting in the spring.

   Below are the projected dates.  Check this website, call or email for updated information.

  • April / May:  Natural Roof Thatching.   The sides of the thatched gable roof will be finished using Phragmite, water reed, and and cat tail reed will be applied to the ridge. 
  • April / May:  Fieldstone Stem Wall.  Learn to lay up a fieldstone foundation using cement mortor and beautiful fieldstone from the land here, brought 10,000 years ago by the glaciers!  We will also be creating part of the wall with "urbanite", chunks of cement sidewalk, a recycled material appropriate for foundations.
  • May:  Windows, Doors & Loft.   We will be making simple window frames and door bucks out of dimensional lumber.  The windows on the east, north and west will be integrated with the strawbales, while those on the south side of this solar-oriented structure will let in the sun's heat in the winter, and light throughout the year.   An enchanting door will be designed and constructed for the south side designed with a rounded top to fit under the arched "eyebrow" of the thatched roof. A loft area and ladder will be hand-built out of round poles and lashed together!  Fun. 
  • June: Strawbale Walls.   Local strawbales will be wraped around the post and beam framing system of this little cottage. creating a continuous insulation shell for the building.  The walls will be pinned on the inside to create lateral stability, and coated with earth plaster for beauty, fire resistance and protection from the elements. 
  • June: Earth Plasters.  Covering the strawbales will be an earthen plaster we will make from the dirt that was excavated by hand from the foundation trench of this very building!  Talk about "local"!  Learn to mix and apply earthen plasters from the first slip coat to the finished plaster. 
  • July: Earthen Bench & Floor.  We will be insulating the floor, and installing insulating strawbale benches coated with earthen plasters.  Sculpting an earthen bench and installing an insulated earthen floor system. 
  • Natural Building presentations, exhibits & demonstrations will be made throughout the year at conferences & other venues. 


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