Here are a sample of completed straw bale home in Tuolumne and Calaveras counties, California, and in Oregon.


Craftsman Style Home

This contemporary Craftsman style home, completed in 2009 is over 3000 square feet of beautifully blended straw bale and timber frame elements. The floors are stained concrete with radiant heat throughout, and due to the energy efficiency inherent in straw bale construction, no air conditioning system was necessary.

Craftsman Style Home Front  Craftsman Style Home  Craftsman Style Home Timber Detail 2  Craftsman Style Home Master Bedroom  Craftsman Style Home Bedroom  Craftsman Style Home Nicho  Craftsman Style Home Dining Room  Craftsman Style Home Bales

Eco-Friendly Home
This country style family home incorporates energy efficiency and ecological materials such as earthen plaster, cotton insulation, low VOC paints, and nontoxic concrete stain.  The off-grid solar electric system incorporates innovative features such as hot water preheating with excess energy. Large porches on three sides of the house extend the open living areas and protect the house from the elements.  Window seats hewn from thick pine slabs provide inviting spots to take in views of the pond or distant hills.  Walls are plastered with natural materials that have an organic, hand-sculpted feel, with pure lime outside and pigmented clay with a touch of sparkling mica inside. Handmade rice paper light fixtures and manzanita towel bars accent the natural atmosphere. The children's bedrooms upstairs feature sleeping lofts accessible from built-in climbing walls. 

Santa Fe Style
This house captures the adobe style of southwestern desert architecture, with the best of old world style and modern sensibility. Concrete slab floors incorporate radiant heating and are stained with  multi-colored acrylics. A traditional adobe fireplace is the centerpiece of the spacious living room. The roomy Trex deck off the living room is designed as an outdoor living space with beautiful pine soffits and deck to ceiling closable rolling shutters. Colorized concrete countertops contrast nicely with well-figured alder cabinets.
Affordable Family Home
This efficient floor plan combines style with affordability. This 2000 sq. ft. house was built on a shoestring budget. It includes 3 bedrooms, an office, 2.5 baths, open living room and kitchen, and vaulted ceilings. It provides comfortable living for a family of five and easy entertaining with the open kitchen plan. Pine cabinets and colored concrete counter tops lend a country feel to the interior. Forced air furnace and air conditioning maintain a comfortable indoor climate.
Mountain Retreat
The owners wanted to create a home that recaptures the Twain Harte spirit of the small, refined cottage nestled amongst the woods.  Inside, the living room and kitchen share a 25 foot open beam ceiling.  The fireplace faces a 15 foot bay that provides a sense of an English country home.  Plastered inside and out, the walls are a reminder of the handmade quality of the home.  Built on five levels under one roof, it has two bedrooms and two baths.  The lowest level is a 450 square foot ceramics studio with separate kiln room, and French doors to an outdoor workspace.  The designer worked for months with the owners to find the truest expression of their concept.  Then we modified the plans so that construction would be swift, solid and economical.  There are many features in the home worthy of mention, including hardwood cherry floors, concrete window sills each lit from above in the window alcove, and concrete kitchen countertops.  
Family Home
Completed in 2002, this lovely 2000 square foot country style house has the feel of a California mission.  The design was about the family of four from the outset: how to incorporate generous private spaces for both children and parents, while also providing wonderful shared spaces.  The country kitchen is built into a bay that looks through the pines to a grandfather oak.  The backdoor opens into a pantry/mud room before entering the kitchen so the dirt of playing children or gardeners can be controlled.  A covered porch on three sides adds to the spaciousness of the indoor living area, as does the balcony off the master bedroom.  


Artist Haven
Completed in 1999, this is the home of two fine artists, a painter and a textile artist.  Thus the design incorporated two 800 square foot studios with 11 1/2 foot ceilings.  The kitchen and dining areas were sandwiched between the studios and thus were able to share the studios' two patios.  The downstairs is in the woods while the upstairs faces the view across the mountains to the sunset, reporting incoming storms.  Upstairs feature the living room and two bedroom/bathroom suites for the owners and their guests.  The house has radiant heat in the floors with slab on grade construction, providing an opportunity for acid-stained floors.  Concrete countertops add dimension and beauty to the kitchen and bathrooms.




Where it All Began
Our first foray in straw bale construction ten years ago.  This Oregon workshop was built to provide temporary shelter and storage while we worked on our property.  Little did we know then that it would exceed our expectations and show us the potential of straw bale construction.  When we compared its natural traits with the conventional construction that we had done for years, we became enthusiastic straw bale builders!