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Earthen

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Steve Areen, a world traveler who has been visiting remote locations around the world, decided to put down a few roots in northeast Thailand. These roots grew into one of the most beautiful dome homes you may ever see. This work of art (that only cost $9,000 to build) sits in the middle of a mango farm that belongs to Steve’s friend Hajjar Gibran.” – Kent

steve-areen-dome-night-600x3481

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The blackhouse is built on clay where the base stones of the wall stand on pebbles to prevent movement. The thick insulated walls of the home are built from two layers of dry stone with an infill of peat topped off with a layer of clay to prevent water getting in to the wall and then capped with turf which absorbs any excess water.” – Natural Homes

Learn more about How to build a Blackhouse

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If you’ve been drooling over earthen house pictures for any length of time then you’re probably torn. Which building method should you actually use?

  • Cob is so beautiful. So sensual. The smooth curvaceous walls just make you want to rub your hands all over them.
  • Straw bales are so sensible. They’re relatively fast to build and incredibly warm.

I used to change my mind daily from cob to strawbale and back again. After building henry the cob studio, I was madly in love and I didn’t want to miss out on that in our main house. But strawbales appealed to my logical man mind…” – Tom

Continue reading at DIY Home Building…

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This will be one of the most spectacular natural building events in recent history. The cottage will be about 150 square feet, and built with cob, bales, cordwood-cob and salvaged wood. It will be finished with a straw-clay plaster and tamped earthen floor.” - House Alive!

Read more about the One Day Cob House workshop.

Photo above from a past House Alive! workshop. Photo below is the Jelly Bean, a micro cob house.

House Alive Jelly Bean Cob Home

House Alive Jelly Bean Cob Home Interior

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The Freeman is a tiny cob home with many purposes. Great for homesteaders, preppers, business people, or anyone who just wants a little cob house. It can be used for many different types of accommodations. The Freeman can be used as a home, an art studio, a shed, a backyard office, or whatever else you can imagine. It can also be used as a temporary home while building a larger home.” - This Cob House

Learn more about Tiny Cob House Plans and The Freeman

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Our inspiration comes from direct observation of Nature, and from the wisdom of traditional cultures. We are committed to deconsumerizing, to reducing the flow of cash, resources and waste, and helping others to do the same. We work with a wide range of natural materials. Numerous cob demonstration buildings all over North America are now open to visitors. The many buildings at the North American Retreat Center for Natural Building in Oregon’s rainforest where we live, are open by appointment.” - Cob Cottage Company.

See more of the house pictured here on The Cob Cottage Company website.

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A building needs a strong foundation to rest upon. This is the first detail to consider when building any structure. It should be a unified and stable base for your building to sit upon, and must also support the load of the building. It was our goal during Week One of Aprovecho’s Sustainable Shelter Workshop Series (www.aprovecho.net) to construct a stone foundation for the building we would be working on for the next 7 weeks.

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Sun Ray Kelly has been getting pretty popular in the last few years! He’s got a article in the New York Times and an episode of Cribs on MTV! His houses were pretty famous locally too while growing up in the Skagit Valley, North of Seattle but I never met the man. As high school kids we’d drive up the long gravel road to his property check out the “Wizard Houses” as we’d call them then speed away before anyone saw us.

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Now that’s sustainable! It’s an earthen home in Washington’s Independence Valley.

“The funky, individualistic two-story home was built by Gregory Crawford, who works at nearby Rising River Farm  – and travels during the farm’s off season (having no mortgage helps, no doubt). He gained permission to build there by asking the landowner…”

Read more at Lloyd’s Blog: Hand-built Earthen House in Washington Woods.

 

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