Natural Cob Houses – Closer To Nature
Those in love with nature, tradition and, above all, a really simple life, find in cob homes a real viable alternative, from all points of view, to the classic houses, more expensive to build and keep. With construction materials abundantly offered by nature – earth, water, straws, clay and sand – the project of an ecological cob house can swiftly come to life and to a final conclusion over the course of a single summer. To stir your appetite for such a natural living style in the midst of the nature, here are some examples of beautiful cob houses.
Cob houses are built through a process which needs no technical or technological devices. The structural mixture of earth, water, straws, clay and sand is hand modeled as long as the material remains malleable, a truly sensorial experience, hence the characteristic organic and round shapes of the cob homes. To make them durable and to protect them from potential damage of the water, cob houses need strong roofs and relatively good foundations, while walls need to be covered in plaster or stucco.
The team behind the website Natural-home4u.com, specialized in building ecological homes, has a few projects to present in their portfolio. The pictures below show a traditional cob house built in Romania, in a village in Harghita County. It is a two story house, spreading on 80 square meters, with a classic ceramic tile roof insulated with straw bales, featuring fine interior and exterior finishes that make you think this is not really a cob house, but a classic built home.
The next cob home plans come from Alexander Sumerall, a blogger also specialized in building this type of natural homes. The first plan shows a small cob home, which goes by the name “Freeman”, spreading on less than 200 square feet. The other plans look bolder, describing one or two story houses featuring the same organic shapes characteristic to this type of houses.
The pictures below come from naturalhomes.org which centralizes images of cob homes around the world. The last picture shows a cob house built in SW Romania by Ileana Mavrodin, a lady who, using natural materials, helps people rediscover their local skills and community spirit.