For thousands of years, people have been building their homes out of the dirt beneath their feet.
Natural and vernacular building techniques have roots in every culture around the world, but share the distinction of using local materials, being energy efficient, and having a low ecological footprint. Only during the past century have natural building methods been replaced by the construction industry which is characterized by an unsustainable sourcing of non-renewable resources, energy inefficient design, and a huge carbon footprint.
Natural building techniques allows individuals to use their hands and feet to form earth mixed with sand and straw, a sensory and aesthetic experience similar to sculpting with clay. Natural building is easy to learn, inexpensive to build, and lends itself to organic shapes such as curved walls, arches and niches. Earth homes are cool in summer and warm in winter and maximize the capture of natural sources of energy. Natural building methods don´t contribute to deforestation, pollution or mining nor depend on manufactured materials or power tools. In this age of environmental degradation, dwindling natural resources, and chemical toxins hidden in our homes, doesn’t it make sense to return to nature’s most abundant, cheap and healthy building material?