Finally, building again!

For a few days now we have been working again.  Oh, how I have longed for that!

This is what the chapel looked like when we started the work for the week. Still with 14 “edges”. The goal was to make the outer walls more rounded and without “corners”


Then we had good and intensive work several days under the guidance of my favorite clay builder teacher, Ulf, who had travelled here from far south i Sweden to guide us with some parts that I did not know how to continue with. Here Ulf is showing us how to apply a much thicker layer than one normally would, and the “tricks” to make it possible….


We have worked long days…


We filled the “cavities” between “corners” with a mixture with a LOT of filling in, such as buckets of woodchips, smaller wood shavings, hemp and more… also adding lots of  sticks to fill out   – see the “tree” we have “massaged” into the filling!  Look to the right  in the picture above.


Here Christiane is smashing  round balls of clay mixture to build the rounded shape of the wall below the window.

After the surface had got more of the shape that we want it to have – rounded like a KIWI-fruit!  …We put linnen net on most places to reduce the risk of cracks when the very thick layer will dry,. The net also had to be “massaged” into the wet plaster.


Above You also see the result of the choice of color on window sills!

On top of the net we plastered another layer of clay mixture, but very thin and with not much of “fillings”… Then again: prepare for the next layer… so that (future) layer will attach when the thick filling is dry:

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Then my poor camera got tired… so today I can not show You the result of our hard labour. Another day I will!(Perhaps my camera got some small pieces clay stuck in it… I hope my husband can be a “camera surgeon”  🙂


Day of preparations

Late last night Ulf, our best clay builder teacher arrived. He brought a young man, Pontus,  that is on an internship with Ulf for a few weeks. Today we have had a day of planning and discussing many options on how to make the filling layer on the outside of the chapel. After several hours of penetrating different options we came to decisions. Then the preparations could start:

Here Ulf and Brandon from England, who is a volunteer with us since a few weeks, are slicing clay and putting into bathtubs to soak in water. The blending machine still has its winter cap on…



Pontus who is training to become a builder is here adjusting the “sacrifice board”  = the plank that will have the raindrops pour away from the wall and not go into the foundation of the house.

– What is it that you are doing down on our level?



-Oh, it takes so much time for people to do what they think is important… WHEN will you have time to scratch me again? … I get so tired of waiting…




Like this Pontus is correcting all the slots of the “skirt”, the sacrifice board that goes around the whole chapel.


My husband Lärkan was in our nearest city today getting some samples of window sills. Which color shall we choose? I think the orange, “brick colored” one (=the biggest one, laying under the two other samples) We will order the windowsills and have them embedded in the clay. The company said they might even manage to “bend” them for us tomorrow!



Closer to start with new building material!

The latter few days we have had a digging machines and a dumper and some other machines around. We are building up the “course area” . Today when the men with their machines are getting close to finishing their job, I asked them to dig up some more clay. And wow, did they!


Look how nice and “fat” and blue our clay is!

Here the digging machine has dug some up  from close to our little creek and now puts it in the dumper:


And finally the dumper has rolled up and is dumping it on the pile of clay that will give us the possibility to continue building also this summer. All together I think we have about 8 m3 of clay waiting now.


As You see there are “mouse-ears” on the trees, but it is still very cold during the nights. Around or some nights even below zero. But next week we will start building! Now nothing can hold us back!  May we have the blessing of being successfull and reach our goals for this building season!