How to Build with Straw Bale

straw bales
(Image credit: getty images)

Building with straw bale makes good sense: no other building material is as easy to build with, provides so much insulation for so little cost or stores as much carbon within itself. Another advantage of straw bale buildings is their longevity. If they are designed and built well with appropriate materials, and maintained throughout their lifetime, they should last more than 200 years.

It is also usually a joyful and collaborative experience to build your own house from straw. Straw bale building sites are often full of enthusiastic people who are willing to work hard to achieve quality work.

Barbara is the founder of Straw Works , a consultant for Wellspring Architecture, and the principal of the School of Natural Building, which teaches self builders, architects and others the skills of straw bale building and lime and clay plastering. Barbara trained as a carpenter and joiner, and specialised in roofing until she discovered straw bale building in 1994; she is now one of the UK's leading straw bale building experts. She was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award from Women in Construction in 2011.