carving 1

Decorative Clay Plastering Workshop, Sussex, UK

Clay plastering the joints between bales...

Clay plastering the joints between bales…

The walls take shape... clay plastering the bale walls.

The walls take shape… clay plastering the bale walls.

Earth, Hands and Houses Straw Bale Workshop Leader, Paulina Wojciechowska

Building with earth: Paulina and her passion…

People having fun at a Clay Plastering Workshop run by Earth, Hands and Houses.

Workshops are always lots of fun!

A five day In-Depth Clay Plaster Workshop

18-23 May 2018

Set on a beautiful field in East Sussex countryside on the outskirts of the village of Forest Row, UK.

Taught in English by architect and author Paulina Wojciechowska.

This workshop is a wonderful opportunity to gain hands-on experience of all aspects of clay plaster on a small straw bale wall.


What You Will Learn

The five day workshop is based around the real hands-on experience of using clay plaster on the walls of a straw bale structure, supported by regular lectures to ensure you understand the theory and possibilities. Over the five days you will learn:

  • Recognising the clay found on our land and understanding how to use it for creating clay plaster in construction
  • Preparation and application of the first 2 coats of clay plaster onto the straw bale wall
  • Application of a clay and straw “cob” mixture to straw bale walls
  • Preparation and application of the final layer of plaster
  • Sculpting with clay plaster
  • mixing different clay colours applying and carving the smooth plaster layers.
  • Methods of protecting clay plaster from the elements.
  • Preparation and application of clay paints for a beautiful natural finish.
  • The theory of how clay floors are built.

This clay plaster workshop will be mainly hands-on, with theory lessons on each day to back up the practical skills learned and provide the opportunity for more detailed questions to be answered.

Book Your Place

The price of the five day In-depth Clay Plaster and artistry with clay plasters Workshop in May is £295 per person.

Numbers on the workshop will be limited to ensure a good learning experience, and we are expecting the allocated places to fill up before the workshop begins.

To book your place
call Paulina (+44) 7787918184.

About your Workshop Leader

The workshop will be lead by Earth, Hands and Houses founder Paulina Wojciechowska, a qualified architect who has over 18 years of experience building with straw bales and  earthbags in communities all around the world. Paulina worked alongside leading straw bale and clay plaster veterans Bill and Athena Steen in 1997-8 and has been involved in running natural building workshops and designing and building structures with natural materials since then. Click here to hear Paulina talk about her experiences.

Food, Location, Accommodation

Vegetarian/Vegan food will be available at an additional cost of £10/day, payable upon arrival. The food will comprise a self service breakfast, full cooked lunchtime meal, and a light supper, ususally leftovers from lunch or soup.  To keep the food cost to the minimun the food will be prepared by ourselves with the help of volunteers or a cook if the numbers are sufficient to pay the cook.

Location : The workshop will be held on farmland, 1mile outside of the village centre of Forest Row, near Weirwood reservoir in East Sussex, UK.

Camping : You may camp on the workshop field for free, but there are no camping fascilities except a hole in the ground for a toilet, a screened wash area with a bucket and bowl and a summer outdoor kitchen area, with a tarpoulin outdoor fire area.

CLICK HERE for Location Maps, more details of the camping facilities, maps, travel information and other accommodation available.


Please note that consumption of alcohol and smoking on the site are not allowed.

Workshop Timing

The workshop will run approximately on the following times:

day 1 starting at 12.00, middle days  09.30 to 17.30, last day we will aim to finish a little earlier to give you time to pack.

If you are  camping, you are welcome to arrive any time from 15:00 on the day before the workshop starts and to depart the day after the workshop ends, or stay longer and help out.


Booking Multiple Workshops

You are welcome to attend a combination of our other workshops..ask for a discount.

But there is more…

This will be more than just a clay plaster workshop – it will be a wonderful opportunity to enjoy learning and relaxing amongst like minded people, some who may become your friends for life!

Learn more…

Hear Paulina talk about her experience and vision for Earth, Hands and Houses:


Watch people’s experience of an Earth, Hands and Houses straw bale and clay plaster workshop: