Building with earthbags is essentially building with adobe bricks without going through the lengthy process of making them. You take polypropylene sandbags, fill them with a moist mix of sand and clay, tamp them down hard and connect the layers with 4 point barbed wire. Then, you cover them over with an earthen plaster.

In reality, I didn't use polypropylene bags. Some Brasilians started a type of construction they call hyperadobe which uses mesh bags, or continuous tubing, made from the same material as the onion or potato bags in the grocery store. They don't require barbed wire, though otherwise the process is just about the same.

As I talk about in the blog posts, my design has been guided by simplicity and efficiency. More than anything, what's been most important to me is to live in a house that I myself, with no building experience whatsoever, can design, build and maintain. A natural extension of that has been the desire to live in a peaceful space. For me that means a home that's in tune with nature, thus limiting the use of imported materials for construction, in addition to those that will be needed later on, such as for heating. Please enjoy reading, ask me any questions, get inspired, and come help and learn!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Aussie Article About My House

The Owner-Builder in Australia contacted me about doing an article for their magazine. I wrote about the process of building my earthbag house and it just came out in the February/March 2012 edition! Check out the link below. Unfortunately, you have to subscribe to it either online or in print to be able to read/see it (there's lots of cool photos, all of which are on this blog too). I love how it turned out and it was beyond exciting for me to not only write a synthesis of this wondrous last year, but to have it published too!



  1. Thats awesome alyssa! Congrats!

  2. hello,your house is really looking good,we own land in the neighborhood and would you consider doing a house like this for us ,with us helping? what would you charge?
    sincerely , kevin & cheryl

    1. Hi Kevin,
      Where are you guys exactly? I think you've told me but I forget. I'd be interested and open to either. Email me and we'll talk about it more--alyssawebley at gmail dot com

  3. congrats on being published in The Owner Builder mag here in Australia
    when we were in the midst of our project I wrote an article for them too
    however, you guys have a lot more freedom where you are to do things how you like
    much more regulated here