Natural Homes designed by Elke Cole

By: Elke Cole  09-12-2011

The Healing Sanctuary

is a hybrid building featuring dry stone foundation, cob and straw bale exterior walls, light clay interior walls, earthen floors and natural plasters. The post and beam structure supports the living roof. This building was designed with community input to serve as multiple use facility for ecovillagers: as gathering space, for meditation, birthing room, bodywork sessions, counseling, and more.


The Art Studio

is a hybrid building featuring cob and light clay walls, a log frame structure natural plasters and a living roof. Recycled materials compliment the natural choices: reclaimed 2×6 T&G boards for the floors, 1×6 ceiling boards and galvanized metal siding. The Art Studio has three distinct components:

  • The North lower studio space for use as pottery or other Art space with windows to the North looking into the woodland.
  • The Front, Southern living space for Guest teachers, Artist in residence , approximately 300 square feet with sleeping alcove, small kitchen, desk space and sitting area.
  • The upstairs gallery/classroom/library , a quiet space with separate access; bright and sunny with views of the gardens.


The Chillage

was a design collaboration with Natural Building students. This is a covered outdoor space serving the ecovillage summer population as hang-out space with wireless internet access, as covered dining area and outdoor classroom. The Chillage features a Rumford Fireplace, sculpted cob walls, stabilized earth floor, natural plasters and a living roof.


Brocklehurst Residence

on Gabriola Island. Owner Sara Jane Brocklehurst built her house over a few years and documented the process :

Hidden form the road, this home is situated on a steep south facing slope which became key to the design. Two distinct living areas: low open to the garden, the living space and kitchen. Higher, following the slope up to the North the quiet part: sleeping rooms and bathrooms with a connection onto the living roof on the South side. Materials include Straw Bale walls, lightclay infill, and natural plasters. This home was featured on the Green skyline tours organized by the Nanaimo Regional district .

Other products and services from Elke Cole


Your natural home | Elke Cole

We are trying to bring family together and teach our children and grandchildren that a big house filled with expensive stuff does not make a home and we’re hoping that these next two generations and many to follow will realize the beauty of a simpler life, of family, friends and community.


Project Support for you | Elke Cole

This is a good time to call for a site visit to explore the design possibilities and realities of your site. You are considering the purchase of a piece of land and need help evaluating good building sites. Advice on materials, detailing and scheduling, answering how-to questions and what’s next. You have your plans and you are ready to go into the construction of your natural home.


Services | Elke Cole

Could your project benefit from a handful of enthusiastic learners. Does your school or organization teach about sustainability. Are you looking for team building in a fun and engaging way. Are you building a natural home.


Natural Homes by Elke Cole

2010Natural Home and B&B, Mayne Island, BCNatural Family Home Errington, BCCob Bath House, O.U.R.Ecovillage, Shawnigan Lake, BCEagleyew, Shawnigan Lake, BCKitchen building for Baobab Home, Bagamoyo Tanzania. 2006Residential Development plan, O.U.R. Ecovillage, Shawnigan LakeBrocklehurst Residence, hybrid, Gabriola IslandStraw bale residence, Pender Island.


Inspire your audience | Elke Cole

It is my pleasure to share stories, insights and images with your audience: schools, public events and university classes will gain insight and inspiration. I will be traveling in Europe during the Fall of 2011, and in Tanzania during the winter 2011/2012 and welcome opportunities in these areas. Natural Building, including Earth building and Straw bale construction.