Daily Dose: Straw Homes

Add to TwitterThe third little pig who built his house out of bricks is generally considered to be the most intelligent and resourceful of the trio… but the following homes might convince you that building out of straw isn’t so bad! Crossing countries (US, UK, Denmark, Wales) and styles (traditional, spiral, dome, hobbit-like), these houses relate to one another only in that they use straw as a functional part of their construction.

Straw bale home in Oakland, CA; Image ©Brett Weinstein/Realty Advocates

I don’t know about you, but I’d never guess that this Oakland, CA home was constructed with straw bales between layers of plaster. This natural material acts as an effective insulator, absorbing sun during the day and giving off heat in the evening hours. The straw also helps to reduce external noise – a definite plus in an urban area.

Straw home in Pembrokeshire, UK; Image courtesy of ecohouseagent.com



Next on the docket is a straw home located in Pembrokeshire, UK. Unlike the bales used in the Oakland home, the straw in this residence is load-bearing which eliminates the need for a timber frame. It also looks a bit more three-little-pigs-y. Maybe it’s just the color, though.

Spiral straw home in Denmark; Image ©Poula-Line






The spiral straw home in Denmark is part of an entire eco-village, a community of homes made of a variety of sustainable materials. It was inspired by the shape of a seashell and has a spiral chimney to boot!

Hobbit house in Wales; Image courtesy of simondale.net

We’ll end with my favorite: a house designed and built by Simon Dale called the “Hobbit House.” It’s partially dug into a hillside and displays a frame of spare oak wood as well as straw insulation. Dale says he built it with little to no prior construction experience, so if you have an extra hill and some straw, maybe you can give it a go!

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3 Responses

  1. […] is the original post: Daily Dose: Straw Homes « MTI: Masonry Technology Inc. Share and […]

  2. Great article….great photos
    I believe a house constructed from straw bales and powered by alternative energy from solar panels is both an environmentally friendly and economically sound alternative to a more orthodox building

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