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Little Hartley Workshop

Viva Living Homes

Thursday, 31 August 2017 at 7:55 am - Sunday, 3 September 2017 at 5:00 pm (AEST)

Little Hartley Workshop

Ticket Information

Ticket Type Sales End Price * Fee Quantity
Little Hartley Workshop Tickets 31/08/2017 $120.00 $0.00
* Prices include GST

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Event Details

Ashlee & Matt's Strawbale Workshop with a View!

In just 4 days you'll raise the walls,

get a HUGE amount of the rendering done and
you'll build internal cob walls (for thermal mass)

Why are these workshops so different? 

1. You'll get a HUGE amount of work done

Other workshops don't come close to getting this much work done in this time. 

You'll see our system, and just how do we 'pop up' a house in such a short time. 

2. Inspiring ...

Everyone says how inspiring everyone is on our workshops,

everyone is cool, like-minded, hard workers who want to make a difference. 

And seeing results so fast blows our minds everytime

3. The food mmmm

You'll eat delicious meals - morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea.

"It's worth it just for the food!" Matthew recently said to us

4. Meet new and life long friends... a community

There's something special on one of our workshops, it's hard to describe. 

There's not many places where we can get together as a group with a common goal and help others. 

It's quite special.

You'll most probably keep in contact with the people you meet for years to come.

5. Get Practise!

Help build a home and get practise building a natural home, with us teaching and supervising, it's best to learn how to do it and then practise straight away. We have work stations and groups so you get practise in all areas. See what tools you need and how to organise a work site. 

But you have to be warned, This is a working straw bale workshop

6. Save loads - Other people charge $800 ea for these kind of workshops.

You'll save heaps of $$$ by getting experience and skills

rather than just learn out of a book or
learn hard lessons through the hard knox way

What you'll do & learn:

  • Build straw walls in stretcher bond, make half bales, tension them vertically and horizontally, compress the walls, trim bales, straighten them, fill the gaps in walls

  • Prepare the walls for rendering where materials meet other materials, put a slip coat on

  • Render (internal and external), usually the first and part of the second coat of render. Learn the art of getting the render on and straighten them

  • Build internal cob walls (thermal mass walls)

  • You’ll see what tools and materials we use, how services are dealt with, how to prepare the walls for rendering. How we prepare the soil and clay before rendering.
  • We normally have work stations so you will rotate and get experience doing all of the jobs on site. 



Rain, hail or shine, it will go ahead as we'll have a roof on


Date:   31 Aug - 3 September (Thurs to Sun) (4 full days)

Time:   7:55am- 5pm  Be there on time every day

Address:  20 mins south of Mount Victoria NSW (address tba)


Camping on site:  

Yes - camping available onsite (no power, bring drinking water and there will be a shower)

Accommodation nearby:

Andy & Jeff's Place - 0407 562 614 (special workshop deal - $90 per night - bed, breakfast & dinner)

Victoria & Albert Guesthouse - 02 4787 1241

Mount Victoria Motor Inn - 02 4787 1320

Cedar Lodge Cabines - 02 4787 1256

Blackheath Glen Tourist Park - 02 4787 8101 


Need a ride? Got a spare seat? Click here:> Facebook Carpool



Course or workshop? 

Please note:

If you want to know HOW TO build a strawbale home...we strongly advise to do one of our courses. 

We can't go through specifics or theory here as the goal is to build a house. 
This is a working workshop



Important Info

By purchasing tickets, you agree that:

  • Your spot is confirmed when we receive your payment
  • You commit to arriving at 7:55am everyday
  • It's a non-refundable/non-transferable payment even if you don’t end up going 
  • If you take photos or videos during the workshop, you’ll only use them for personal use 
  • You are fit and healthy and will work the all the days that you’ve specified 
  • You'll give Viva Homes more than 48 hours warning if you cannot attend 
  • You may be photographed or filmed by Viva Living Homes and am happy for them to use the photos in promotional material. If you’re not ok with this, tell us immediately & at the workshop 
  • You’ll come prepared for work and will bring appropriate clothes (long sleeves & pants) & boots to work in 
  • Before starting work on site, you'll do a safety induction lead by one of our Team

Dietary Needs:

The Owner(s) will supply scrumptious: lunch, morning and afternoon teas. You'll need to look after your own breakfasts and dinners.

They'll cater for general needs (vegetarian and meat eaters) - we cannot cater to gluten free or other dietary requirements.  

Should you have special dietary needs or have food allergies we suggest bringing your own specialty foods.

Can I bring my kids? 

Our workshops are on a building site and it's unsafe for kids under 16 to be in the building area.  Your kids can come if you can supervise them the whole time away from the site but you're not going to get much work done unless you can tag team with your significant other...

No spectactors

(just do our courses or jump onto our eco house tour 
if you're not up to hard work, a lot of fun and getting dirty!) 

We will sell out, we always do. So book now 



What other workshoppers say:

"Amazing experience! Highly recommended! The viva team were incredibly encouraging and it was wonderful meeting like minded people. The knowledge and experience gained was invaluable. Thanks guys :)" Erin

"We contacted Viva in a last ditch effort to find some support with our straw bale walls. It is safe to say that we would not have continued with the plan for straw if we had not done this. 

It was only after we attended a Viva workshop that we had confidence in our abilities to achieve the look that we are after. " Leensy

"I feel better after the workshop than when I came. It's just soooo good to come together, we're a community. We just don't get that in our lives anymore" Kane

“I just finished another workshop and rendering is now so much easier. Something just happened so I don’t have to think about what I’m doing now. It’s so exciting!” Shannon

 "The workshop last year was definitely a must. A big thank you to Viva for providing quality workshops and being there to assist owner builders. We did the workshop and have followed what we learned and have not encountered any problems or issues during the build, so thank you Viva guys!" Ilari

Need another reason?

After your join, you get into our private "Graduates Group", 

stay in touch with other cool folk, ask questions, share your story and build

Such a cool group, here's just 1 post!


Get onto it now, book in and be the difference in this world!


All of this for just

$120 per person for 4 days

It's crazy cheap, people keep telling us to increase the price 
because we keep selling out

Have questions about Little Hartley Workshop? Contact Viva Living Homes

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When & Where

Ashlee & Matt's Place

Little Hartley, NSW 2790

Thursday, 31 August 2017 at 7:55 am - Sunday, 3 September 2017 at 5:00 pm (AEST)

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Viva Living Homes




Sam educates builders, architects, owner builders and councils from all over Australia and regularly runs workshops at the Australian Rural Education Centre, Milkwood Permaculture, The HIA Sydney Home Show, Australian Technology Association (ATA) and local councils around Australia. He has built over 30 straw bale homes and have built 3 of his own straw bale homes. He lives in one himself.
Sam’s qualifications include:
- Licensed Builder and Supervisor
- Bachelor of Economics (Agriculture)
- Diploma in Building
- Cert IV Carpentry
- Cert IV Training & Assessing
- Building Thermal & Assessment (Australian energy rating course)

- Master Builder with the Master Builders Assoc (MBA)
- NSW Rep & Member of Australasian Straw Bale Building Association (Ausbale)
- Member of Earth Building Association of Australia (EBAA)

- 2014 Excellence in Building awards from the MBA for “Environmental Management” and “Best House under $500,000”.

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