Special Guest Speaker Series
Carol Venolia – Luscious Living: Natural, Green, Life-Centered Design and Remodeling To Live For!
Carol Venolia is an architect with a 40-year track record in ecological design and a passion for restoring the connections between humans and the rest of life. Her latest book, Natural Remodeling for the Not-So-Green House (with Kelly Lerner), is a beautiful, practical guide to bringing existing homes into harmony with nature. Carol honored us with presentations on Natural Remodeling and Life-Centered Design and led an onsite workshop on how to approach natural remodeling.
Brad Lancaster – Harvesting Rainwater and Stormwater
Design~Build~Live hosted Tucson, Arizona, water master, author and Permaculturist Brad Lancaster for a series of six amazing events in Austin at the end of May 2009. Brad spoke to water regulators at City Hall, gave a public presentation on water strategies, outlined greywater harvesting options at a “grey water happy hour”, met DBL supporters at a fabulous local dinner at Boggy Creek Farm, led a water strategies site walk at American YouthWorks, and conducted a hands on workshop at a Clarksville residence.
Hands-on Construction Events
Natural Building Colloquium of Texas
Design~Build~Live co-organized the 2007 Natural Building Colloquium, a gathering of many national and international natural building stars, local natural builders, and those wanting to learn. As part of the Colloquium, we constructed several structures for Quiet Valley Ranch, hosts of the famous Kerrville Folk Festival. View photos and more at the NBCTx wesite.
Garden wall at Casa de Luz
In the early 1990′s the Sustainable Building Coalition (DBL’s predecessor) conducted a workshop to build the straw bale and cob garden wall at Casa de Luz, a macrobiotic community center. This was one of our earliest workshops.
Audubon birding shelter at Hornsby Bend
This series of SBC workshop in 2000 constructed a light clay straw birding shelter that utilized reclaimed and local materials. It was finished with lime plaster tinted with iron oxide pigment. Other workshops and work days added a rainwater harvesting system and native landscaping.
Cob cottage at Rainbow Ranch
Jump-started by a workshop led by the Cob Cottage Company in 1995, this cottage was completed by SBC workdays, Casa Verde Builders students, and lots of wonderful volunteer hours. It featured cob walls, lime plaster, salvaged windows and doors, and reclaimed wood rafters, with most materials sourced on site. This beautiful little cottage was, to our knowledge, the first cob building in Texas.
Maker Faire 2008
The Design~Build~Live interactive cob oven demonstration was a big hit at Maker Faire. We even won two Editor’s Choice blue ribbons for our booth and demonstration! Many children, including one 3-year-old boy who worked on the cob oven for over an hour, had lots of fun building the oven and getting muddy.
Earth Day 2009 and earlier
Design~Build~Live and the Sustainable Building Coalition have had a booth at Earth Day for many years. We plan to be at Austin Green Art’s eARThday celebration again this year. The festive atmosphere, lots of activities and a great crowd always make for a fun event. There is always a lot of interest in the photos, books, material samples and displays at our booth.
Renewable Energy Roundup 2000 – 2008
We have always have a great time talking with the many people who visit our booth at the Renewable Energy Roundup and Sustainable Living Fair in Fredricksburg, Texas. Connecting with old friends in the sustainable building movement, meeting owner builders planning their straw bale home, and introducing people to natural building are some of the many enjoyable activities at The Roundup.
Austin Green Living Expo 2009
This year marks our third year with a presence at the Green Living Expo. Many of the thousands of visitor to the Expo stop by our booth for an introduction to natural building or to “talk shop”. DBL representatives will be giving special presentations on natural building and straw bale building on the Green Building stage.
Construction Expo 2008
Architects, builders and citizens attended¬¨‚Ä† DBL presentations on Natural Building and Straw Bale Construction. At lot of interest in the topics was shown, and several attendees followed up by addending subsequesnt DBL classes and workshops.