I met Paul and Sara in 2015, long before they moved into their very own Applegate Cottage, at my seven-day, hands-on workshop in La Grande, Oregon and was immediately struck by what an awesome couple they are. They had a work ethic like I’d not seen in years, and were always full of smiles and […]
When most people think about building a straw bale house, they might not think about changing the world. That’s exactly what’s possible though, and on more levels than you may have first considered. Most people who have done their research will be well aware that a straw bale house is beautiful, energy efficient, sound proof, […]
Y Innovations is looking for a lead straw bale builder for a nonprofit housing project in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area. They are building straw bale homes as affordable housing for low-income families in need.
Before I head out to Oklahoma to teach, I wanted to give you all a chance to learn a little about the workshop hosts. We hope you will join us in Choctaw, OK for the last workshop of the year…It will be a BLAST!!!
Enjoying your straw bale build is something that many people simply assume will happen. They believe that since they’re really excited about the idea of building their straw bale home that their excitement will turn into enjoyment during the actual process of building or contracting that project. Unfortunately, the reality is often something very different. The good news is […]
Hiring the right contractor for your straw bale construction project could be the most important decision you make along the path to creating your new home. This decision is more important than the size of the house, the layout of the floor plan, the finish materials you choose, and any other choice you make along […]
As a contractor, you’ll need extensive knowledge of each site evaluation and what it means. There are some easy to forget details that might surprise you…
Mistakes are often made in contracting when reading plans. Make sure you know your plans well and know how to read them to catch any potential mistakes.
I am currently accepting host applications for the 2017 straw bale workshop season. If you hope to host a workshop on your project, please apply today.
Here’s your call to action. We need a new name; one we can all get behind and present to the world in a new and powerful way. What ideas do you have? Please comment below with your ideas and share this article with anyone you think may want to help define the way forward for this amazing building technology.
It may sound obvious, but learning how to build a house, of any kind but especially a straw bale house, is a good thing to do before you actually start building. Ask yourself the following 15 questions and if you cannot answer them with a high level of confidence, you would be best served to gain some more experience before you start building.
The California Straw Building Association (CASBA) has done amazing work in the field of straw bale construction for the last twenty years. This year’s annual meeting will celebrate those achievements and look to the future to see how CASBA can continue to build positive relationships in the field.
I don’t think that the importance of tool organization on a job site can be overstated. This is true for owner builders and professionals alike.
When people talk about the cost of straw bale construction, they often get things a bit muddled up. They either come in way too low or way too high. I’m here to set the record straight, hopefully once and for all.
I wonder if any of you knows why a straw bale house isn’t green. A straw bale house isn’t green because the wall system is only one part of a bigger system, and a small part at that.
Allow me to share with you what I have learned over my 20 years as a professional builder and land developer. All tweaks and adjustments aside, this will be a good footing to start out on for anyone interested in the start to finish process of finding, developing, and building on raw land.
This past October I was invited to Colorado Springs to give a TEDx talk on tiny house living, living within one’s means, and living a deliberate life that supports one’s joy and wellness. The subject matter will be a natural carry over to the straw bale community (who is comprised of so many amazing people looking for a […]
Here’s a link to a short straw bale construction article in the online version of Green Builder Magazine.
For those of you who have been wondering what it will take to help straw bale homes become more mainstream, this may be a part of the answer. David Arkin and Annie Tilt (Arkin-Tilt Architects) have received many awards over the years and their straw bale homes have at least twice graced the covers of Fine Homebuilding Magazine, this time in the fall 2014 edition of Small Homes Cabins and Cottages.
Built in 2001, this energy efficient straw bale home is off the grid and waiting for you to make it your own personal oasis! The highly efficient straw bale construction is powered by solar energy and passive solar design. The property is only 15 minutes from Harbin Hot Springs and 30 minutes to Calistoga, CA.
Last year’s straw bale construction workshop season started with a huge project: the 5300 SF Eco Learning Center at Ferncliff outside of Little Rock, Arkansas. In this article you can check out some mind-numbing facts of some of the “behind the scenes” numbers that go into building a house. Some of them are truly amazing.
One of the most artistic expressions of a straw bale wall are the niches that are carved into it. I have laid out a step-by-step process for the most common niche I see in straw bale homes: the arch top.
Gabriella and I have noticed a recent surge in new subscribers to StrawBale.com and many who have signed up have contacted us to let us know they are brand new to the world of straw bale construction. We want to welcome all of you here and we figured it would be helpful to give you an introduction to what it’s like to build a straw bale home.
Check out this short slideshow to view a beautiful Straw Bale Home in British Columbia, Canada