Natural Building in a Conventional Home

An Update on the Retrofit with Consciousness

Last year we were hired to manage the renovation and restoration of a friends home in the Okanagan Valley. It was a very interesting process, working with the local building department, different trades, and the general ideas that permeate the conventional building world. We were so happy to be able to work and stand up for our client, and friend, to make sure that they had the most healthy and environmentally responsible results possible. We followed this ethic through the project, from the wood that was chosen or re-purposed, to the vanities and hardware that were reused, and, of course, to all the finishing products.

While there might not always be perfect options available when it comes to attempting a deep green retrofit or renovation of a conventional home, there are always better options. It takes research and dedication, and constant evaluation. It should be reassuring to know however, that even in the most conventional house, you do have the choice to use natural materials in almost all of your finishes. From the clay paints and plaster covering the drywall, to the natural oils used in the exposed wood, to earthen counter tops, and finally an earthen floor, this project thoroughly demonstrates the versatility of natural materials.

If you’re interested in some of the specifics behind the project, read part 1 here.

Earthen Floor Kaleden Apr 19 2015 Installing the earthen floor, over a wooden subfloor.

earthen floor with stone inlayEarthen floor with natural stone embedded.

earthen floor with tile mosaicEarthen floor with tile mosaic inlay.

Clay finish over drywall in alcoveClay finish over drywall, alcove.

earthen counter top freshly oiled kaledenEarthen counter top with natural oils and wax.

Clay finish over drywall, kitchen. Green home construction. Colour 'Snake River'.Clay finish over drywall in kitchen.

American Clay over drywall, bathroom. Green home renovation. Colour 'Tuscon Gold'.Clay plaster over drywall in bathroom.

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