Alternative Construction & Natural Building
The Straw Bale House Book
by Athena Swentzell Steen, Bill Steen, David Bainbridge, David Eisenberg. (A Real Goods Independent Living Book, Chelsea Green 1994)
Authors Athena Swentzell Steen and Bill Steen founded the Canelo Project, which promotes innovative building; David Bainbridge is a California restoration ecologist;and David Eisenberg is an alternative-materials builder who pioneered straw bale wall testing. Between them, they have encyclopedic knowledge of their subject. The book is comprehensive, broadly covering why and how to build with straw and then focusing on the details, which are both intellectually and aesthetically delightful.
The Art of Natural Building
This comprehensive introduction to the natural building field is for lay people, architects, and designers who wish to build beautiful, low-cost, and environmentally-sensible structures. From straw bale and cob, to recycled concrete and salvaged materials, this anthology of articles from leaders in the field focuses on both the practical and the esthetic concerns of ecological building designs and techniques. Profusely illustrated and packed with resources. All three editors are central practitioners in the natural building movement. Joseph F. Kennedy has expanded the boundaries of ecological architecture with NASA's space station habitability module. Michael Smith is the author of The Cob Cottage (Chelsea Green, 2001), among others. Catherine Wanek is the editor of The Last Straw Journal.
A veritable treasure trove of ideas, styles, and natural building practices. This book also explores ancient, traditional building practices, grown from a specific place and people and adapted to a specific environment. Natural building techniques include Cob and lime plaster, compressed earth block, stackwall, straw and bale, wood, stone, solar energy, plumbing, landscaping, permaculture, sustainable living methods, eco-villages profiles--nothing is overlooked.