Rastra block walls with earthen plasters are featured in this photo taken of the office. One wall was sheet rocked so to easily hang photos without damaging an earthen plaster, and to ensure a light feel to the small room. We plastered the first coat using the earth from the foundation excavation. Following the first coat we then applied a tan final coat using clay dirt found a few miles down the road.

Note the rough sawn window trim (not mitered which is the local style). Also note the window sills which were hand harvested by Norbert from the nearby forest. They have become one of the standard features we offer those who would like them. We keep the front edges raw a bit to keep the gorgeous details of the bark intact. We oil the sills and window trim with our go-to natural stain, that of boiled linseed oil. We will use alternative oil products with less odor than the store bought brands, should out-gassing be an issue for any of our clients. Bioshield in Santa Fe sells some very good healthy oils and stains. And we know that even something as simple as a walnut oil can be applied, which is virtually odorless. For more info on healthy stain and oil options – http://www.bioshieldpaint.com/

We might note here that the trees we are harvesting have fallen down on their own accord, near our home in the national forest. Often we are taking trees which have blocked the right of way on paths. Given how dry our surrounding forest is, we know we are helping a bit to manage the surrounding forests. The planks shown here on the window sills are about 100 years old. We only use a half of a plank, and have counted the rings which come in at about 60. We feel very lucky to have such options available for our projects to add a special organic touch to them which is so beautiful.