Learn to Build a Double Chamber Wood Fired Cob Oven

Date: July 19 - July 20, 2014
Duration: 2 days
Fee: $280
Category: Double Chamber Cob Oven
Location: St. Paul , AB

Come out for 2 days July 19th & 20th 2014, and learn all about building with earth: specifically how to use it to build a super efficient wood fired oven. You will gain the skills to build your very own wood-fired oven made from natural materials including clay, sand, straw, and bricks. 

This workshop weekend will take place at Blue Quills First Nations College in St. Paul, AB  $280 + tax.

Accommodation/Meals: This 2 day workshop includes all meals & camping on site (Blue Quills First Nations College). Details below.

Instructors: Ashley Lubyk & Heather Noakes (Dirt Craft Natural Building).

Registration: Please visit www.bluequillsnaturalbuildings.com to register online or contact (save 10% when you register with a friend):

Michael Hollihn (Natural Building-Science Apprenticeship Program Coordinator):  780.645.4455 extension 241 email: [email protected]

About the Workshop: This weekend is an expansion of our classic one-day cob oven workshop.

We are going to build a double chamber cob oven – an adaptation that increases the efficiency of the wood that is used to heat the oven. We will also be building the insulation component of the base, another great way to make a cob oven ‘energy star’ rated!

Over the two days, we will actually build this type of oven, what we call a cob oven, (cob: a mixture of clay, sand & straw) during the workshop, so you’ll have very practical experience to accompany the theory and design information that will be covered during the workshop as well.

These ovens create an exceptional environment for baking artisan breads and amazing pizza, as well as stews, roasts, delicious veggies, cinnamon buns, baked desserts and more.

And we’ll show you how it can be done with minimal cost! 


Here is a preview of some of topics that we’ll be covering during the weekend:

     •     identify ideal place for your oven

•    create a base for an oven

     •    identify suitable soil for making cob

•    lay firebricks for an effective hearth

•    build an oven form

     •    mix thermal cob & insulative cob

•    build the different cob layers for the oven

•    build the perfect door

•    use wood efficiently

•    bake perfect bread


Why Hands-on:

One of the key elements in the above list is learning to identify suitable soil for making cob. This what we feel a hands-on workshop can really deliver on. Often, we get students who say they have been reading natural building books for years, or perhaps the great book “Build Your Own Earth Oven” by Kiko Denzer has been on their nightstand through the long winter months, and their comment is always the same: until they were to really get their hands dirty with the material (cob) under clear guidance, they were lacking the confidence to move forward on their own projects.

Why a Cob Oven:

Working with natural materials is an empowering process that, by it’s very nature, invites collaboration and cooperation. Cooking in an earthen oven connects us with the elements and our food in a profound way. By the end of this workshop you will have connected with some great people and you’ll walk away with the skills necessary to build your own oven, of your designing.



“Thank you so so very much for the amazing day!! I’m definitely feeling inspired.  I enjoyed very much the hands-on approach. There really is no other way. The instructions were simple, clear and relaxed…which I also loved.”

-Dalia Kohen, Student (How to Build a Cob Oven Calgary)

Learn From Experience:

We have taught over 450 students, and built over 40 cob ovens since we officially became a business in 2010. This means we have encountered many different, and sometimes difficult situations. Often, the most difficult of which has been the clay material that has been collected to build whether that is to make cob, earthen plasters or earthen floors. We bring this experience and knowledge to each workshop, so that when you encounter your own difficulties, during your own project, you will be armed with all of the necessary information to make decisions when the time comes.



Thoughts on Natural Building Education:

We strongly believe that natural building is best learned in a hands-on environment, and this is why we always work on real projects in our workshops. Our goal is to ensure that you get the education and experience you need, to have the confidence to work on your own projects. We want to contribute in a positive and meaningful manner to the natural building community and we think that education, with integrity, in the latest building techniques can expand and add to this emerging field.


This course is for you if:

  • The thought of building with natural materials excites and/ or scares you – but you really want to dig in!
  • You would love to be able to eat delicious wood fired pizza from an oven you can build yourself!
  • You are looking for guidance on where to start with cob and wood fired oven
  • The idea that you can build with material found under foot is awe-inspiring & perception altering

Click here to see more photos what you can expect from a day, and to see some delicious Cob Oven Cookery Photos as well.



Course details and directions to the workshop location will be sent to all registered students about a week before the course. Save 10% when you register with a friend.

St. Paul is 2.5 hr North East of Edmonton, and 5.5 hr from Calgary.

Note: Registrations are being administrated through Michael Hollihn at Blue Quills. Please visit www.bluequillsnaturalbuildings.com or contact or contact him directly: Michael Hollihn (Natural Building-Science Apprenticeship Program Coordinator): 780.645.4455 extension 241 email: [email protected].

Want More Hands-on Natural Building?

Dirt Craft will be leading 3 back to back natural building workshops at Blue Quills this July. This partnership presents a unique opportunity for some serious hands-on learning. As a way for you to take advantage, we thought we’d offer the Natural Building Intensive package. Sign up for all three workshops for a savings of $200. Please contact Michael Hollihn at Blue Quills to register.


Double Chamber Wood Fired Cob Oven July 19 & 20 $280
The Straw Bale Comprehensive July 21 – July 25 $700
The Complete Earthen Floor July 26 & July 27 $280
Total: $1,260
Natural Building Intensive (all 3 workshops, save $200) July 19 – July 27 $1,060