In a bid to showcase the many different people drawn to natural building, we would like to introduce you to another SNaB trainee. This is the wonderful Simone Ruschmeier…
A professional architect and self-described “Strohbaustellenbegleiter”, Simone’s work has so far taken her from her native Germany to the UK, Haiti, Morocco, the Czech Republic and Poland. Meeting Barbara Jones at the Ecobuild conference in 2006 first sparked her interest in straw but it was only after encountering the material again whilst volunteering in Haiti that she decided to look into it further. She got back in touch and enrolled on a course to help build Straw Works Ambassador Kuba Wihan’s summerhouse-sauna in Bozanov.
It wasn’t long before she experienced “bale frenzy” – a phenomenon common to many! For Simone, working with her favourite materials of straw, timber, lime and clay means that she is on a permanent high. So far, as a SNaB trainee, she has learned how to work with all of these materials, as well as exploring the intricacies of car tyre foundations. So where does Simone hope the traineeship will take her in the long run?
She’s not entirely sure just yet but likes the look of the horizon she’s heading towards: accompanying self-builders through their own adventures with straw as an on-site architect – lots of physical work with some great people!
Simone’s top tip:”Build your own house, make it as good as you can and give yourself roots and self-confidence by doing so!”