Natural Building Collective

About Us/Hire our Crew

We offer assistance to owner-builders who are embarking on their own natural building adventure. You can hire our crew for projects big or small such as homes, cabins, garden sheds, fences, outhouses, cob-ovens,  interior plasters or whatever your dream natural building project is.  Please book us early for the season ahead!  For more information please contact us at or call 250-703-1387

We are also able to do retrofits or eco-renovations of existing conventional homes with, for example, materials like natural paints and plasters and alternative insulation such as straw or wool.  This can be done at any time of year.

Another option is that the MudGirls can help facilitate a workparty at your home during which we will share the skills of natural building with your friends, family or community while working on your very own natural structure. You too can learn to build naturally!

Also, as a collective, the MudGirls organize our own workshops in which we share skills and facilitate the learning of natural building with our participants. We  provide education and community outreach to help spread the natural building and sustainable living movement. We seek to inspire people to think about ancient or new and creative ways to change how we live on this earth. Our aim is to stop harming and start healing the earth and ourselves.

Even more about us….

Mission Statement

Our Mission is to Empower ourselves and others through sharing skills and knowledge that promote healing and living in harmony with the Earth.

Our Guiding Principles

• We work with unprocessed natural and recycled materials to create beautiful and healthy structures that are earth friendly.

• We are a women’s collective and seek to empower ourselves with employment and the skills to build homes.

• We are a collective that is human friendly: recreating our concepts of work to prioritize respect and care for our hearts, our bodies and our children while we work together. We create a work environment that nurtures us.

• All our events are child and mother friendly with quality childcare always provided.

• We seek to do our business in a non-capitalist spirit. We keep the cost of natural building affordable by keeping our wages low, offering our workshop for barter, building for people with low-income as much as we can.

• We are structured non-hierarchically. Each member is equally valued and has equal say in decision making.

• We use the teachings of Non-Violent Communication to create a peaceful, mutually respectful and revolutionary harmonious group process.

• We work together to make this up as we go, nurturing a creative, inventive and courageous spirit in us all!

45 responses

  1. jo

    i absolutely LOVE your idea of earth friendly homes and buildings. Beautiful art!
    im just buying property and i am going to try to (start small, lol) and make my art studio a cob house. this would also be an awsome school project. i’ve seen a couple of cob houses on tv beore, but none as beautiful as yours. VERY INSPIRING! wish i lived closer. i would like to know about any tutorials you may offer online.
    thanks again for the beautiful hard work.
    jo vickery

    June 14, 2012 at 1:27 pm

  2. Linda Fox

    I read that you work on the west coast of Canada. Will you come to the Seattle area? I live on an island also. :-)

    June 24, 2012 at 10:52 pm

    • molly

      we are able to move across The Line. let us know thru emailing the mudgirls, and we can see what is possible.

      July 15, 2012 at 6:53 pm

  3. Linda Fox

    Not only will you come south a little, but would you consider hosting a workshop on my site (yet to be purchased) and build my tiny cottage? Thanks so much.

    peace and blessings, Linda Fox

    June 24, 2012 at 10:54 pm

  4. Peter Norris

    Good work sisters, keep it up! As a grizzled old builder I may not subscribe to some of your building ideas, but I support your vision and the notion that we can do better. 30% of landfill here is building waste. We can do better. It appears that you are are.

    Peter Norris

    June 29, 2012 at 2:02 am

  5. OOh, how nice! I don’t suppose you’d come to Minnesota and lead a workshop? I’m about to buy land and you are building the way I want.

    July 5, 2012 at 2:21 pm

  6. franciscoandmalkadesign

    Hello Mudgirls!

    We attended your cob buillding workshop for the Canada Day weekend, Salt Spring Island BC, in 2011. We really enjoyed picking up some tricks as well as sharing ideas with like minded people. We are currently creating out of Mexico City, advocating for a cleaner and well designed world.

    Francisco and Malka

    August 21, 2012 at 6:39 pm

  7. Butch Nergaard

    Would like to attend some of your events do you have a schedule of upcoming?

    September 26, 2012 at 11:50 pm

  8. Kathleen

    I’ve started the wheels for purchasing some acreage and starting a settlement for middle aged displaced women. I will be looking to make it as “off the grid” as possible. The structures that I see would fit the bill. Awesome stuff ladies! It fills my heart to see another generation of strong women reaching out to others.

    October 1, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    • Debbie

      You’re planning something wonderful Kathleen! Good to see things out there for older women.

      March 15, 2013 at 10:22 pm

    • Kirsti Halberg

      Kathleen – Did you manage to purchase some acreage? Where are you thinking? I have been looking into purchasing as well. Not sure what you mean by “displaced” women. I’m hoping to start somewhere for people to live simply and self sufficiently with collective support for all as we get older. And stay healthy by being busy and happy! I’m in Victoria right now and am looking anywhere on the islands or mainland.

      March 15, 2013 at 10:54 pm

      • Patricia

        Kirsti, and Kathleen, I’d like to be in conversation with you about planning and building a simple and self sufficient place to live with collective support. I am a youthful and healthy 66 in Vancouver and it is my dream to live in a cobb house – I have lots of skills and experience to contribute. Are your plans progressing?

        April 12, 2013 at 6:11 pm

      • Hi there!
        please send an email to
        looking forward to hearing from you.

        April 15, 2013 at 10:11 pm

      • gyorgyi

        If I can get in this project please let me know. I am in Ontario right now but I am flexible. Please let me know if there are any new developments any news. I would love to keep in touch. What you wrote is my dream for many years. The time is NOW!
        Count me in sister!

        September 2, 2013 at 12:39 am

  9. Maria Hernandez

    I love your work. As soon as I AM ready to start my project. (I AM in the process of Co-creating it) you can be sure I will contact you. There are no coincidences, I found out about you for a reason.
    I AM sure Gaia LOVES you dearly.
    Maria Hernandez

    January 19, 2013 at 2:58 am

  10. I have been obsessed with Cob for years now, living in Montréal, but having passed through the BC islands over the years. I want out and “in”… I grew-up on the prairies tilling soil, milking cows to eventually study ceramics (mud!). I paint and perform now but feel the “pull” to complete the circle (wanted to study architecture back in the 80s), on the land with ‘clay” is calling-me! What are your BC plans for a complete 1-2 week work-&-learn project(s) for summer 2013???? I want in if I can swing it.

    January 28, 2013 at 2:35 am

    • Thelma Harvey

      Hi Jan:

      I have land on Lasqueti Island, BC… and want to have a Mudgirl event to build a Beautiful Loo. You’re welcome to join in …and stay on my land as well. Bring on Summer!

      February 3, 2013 at 2:10 am

  11. Hey nice! Will the “loo” involve a complete “head to toe” cob workshop? If I come out there, I would also like to bring along my daughter (3 yrs) who must meet mudgirls, islanders, possibly anarchists and folk who are of the living… very intersted BTW I haven’t been to Lasqueti yet so this would be a real treat. (have been on the Penders and Denman) -when and what??

    February 3, 2013 at 10:46 pm

  12. Kirsti Halberg

    I also have been in love with cob building for many years! Wonderful to see communication here to help and inspire each other. I recently moved to Victoria…finding my way around…looking to find my little corner of paradise to build my home somewhere in beautiful BC. I am soooo looking forward to joining a Mud Girls workshop this spring/summer to meet and learn with others! Yes Thelma….bring it on! Let’s get muddy. (Kathleen – you have an interesting concept which I have also been thinking of)

    February 16, 2013 at 7:28 pm

  13. Janna

    Hi Mudgirls,

    I came across your site years ago, and am so glad to have found it again and realize you are still in business. I ADORE your work. I would love to eventually see a cob structure on our land, but would be even more interested in learning the craft alongside you (with my 3 girls…and possibly my hubby). We are on Vancouver Island. Please keep me informed about 2013 workshops!


    March 5, 2013 at 6:41 pm

  14. This is a very good tip particularly to those fresh to the blogosphere.
    Simple but very accurate info… Thank you for
    sharing this one. A must read article!

    April 1, 2013 at 11:34 am

  15. Kirsti Halberg

    Patricia…I’m on Vancouver Island right now keeping my eyes open for property opportunities. Would love to share information and ideas with you!

    April 15, 2013 at 10:35 pm

  16. Karin Nickel

    I am totally in love with these structures…can you please tell me if there are restrictions on where you can build? I’m living in Victoria and would love to buy some land and build a small Cobb house.

    July 9, 2013 at 2:47 am

    • Kirsti Halberg

      Hi Karin, I’m in Victoria as well. Contact me if you want to share information and ideas!

      July 13, 2013 at 6:55 pm

      • Karin Nickel

        Hi Kirsti, sorry I didn’t reply earlier. I’m still very much interested in finding out more info on the regulations etc. Sorry I don’t have any info to share at the moment, I’ve been travelling back and forth to the Mainland for a while so haven’t had much time. My life should slow down now and I can do some research!

        August 15, 2013 at 1:12 am

  17. Pingback: Mud Girls Rule! |

  18. Carol

    I am looking for a number of projects to be done: cob oven, root cellar and a few other ideas.

    August 14, 2013 at 7:12 pm

  19. Alyssa

    I just stumbled across your wordpress on about my thousandth late night googling spree of cob housing/building. I absolutely LOVE your mission statement, and from what I can see of your work, the structures you have done are gorgeous. I live near Portland, Oregon, which I assume is too far from you to do a workshop here :( Is there any possibility that I could join/volunteer with you ladies on a project this summer in your neck of the woods? Or is there anyone living nearer to me who would like to exchange ideas? Thanks in advance for any info! Keep up the good work, you all are doing a great service here :)


    January 28, 2014 at 6:53 am

    • Danielle

      Hi Alyssa.

      I know that another cob building centre is having a two-week workshop just out of Roseburg, Oregon. Google It looks good. I can’t make it to that workshop, but would attend if I could.

      From another late-night cob googling gal.


      February 6, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    • we would love to have you attend one of our workshops up here in canada. lots of people come from far away, so you are more than welcome to join us.

      April 22, 2014 at 3:27 pm

  20. HI there,
    I am so excited about learning how to make a cob home! I have not yet taken a workshop but I plan to do so very soon. I live in Ontario, so unfortunately coming out to BC for a course may not be doable…I am wondering if you know any workshops or resources in this end of the country? Thanks so much.

    March 29, 2014 at 3:06 pm

  21. gyorgyi

    I live in Ontario and would love to attend a workshop/build my own little mud house. Would you come out this way???? Please, let us know, there are many of us in Ontario who love mud.

    March 30, 2014

    March 30, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    • we do travel. tho ontario is quite far! and generally clients pay for our travel expenses… so we have yet to be employed so far from home. but please come out and join us this summer for a workshop or two! :)

      April 22, 2014 at 3:45 pm

  22. Interested to see about a possible mud girl collaboration putting in an earthen floor on my hale. You were recommended by an Irish woman who passed through my farm about 4 months ago. Mahalo for your response!

    August 18, 2014 at 7:36 am

  23. Rita meckling

    Hello saw your site posted on Pinterest. My family and I are wanting to build cordwood cabins on a piece if land we own, so we are very interested in joining one of your workshop/working seminars in the 2015 season. Is it possible for you to send us info on dates and locations for next year. Thank you in advance for your reply

    October 14, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    • Our website should have some new workshops on it by mid march or April. Keep checking here.

      February 1, 2015 at 9:44 pm

  24. Hi, I am hoping to get something going and build a cobhouse for my two kids (10 and 6(special needs)) in the coming three years. Can i hire a group to build with me? I am a single mom in BC housing and have saved $50K. Will this be sufficient? Can mudgirls give me some directions on how to apply?

    November 29, 2014 at 2:31 pm

    • Please email to get more info on how we function. You project sounds wonderful and 50k can/should be enough depending on legalities and size!

      February 1, 2015 at 9:47 pm

  25. This is wonderful! Just heard about you on CBC radio this morning and had to check out your site. I don’t have any definite plans as of yet but you got my wheels turning. You see I advocate for victims of domestic abuse, you can find my website at . Some of the greatest challenges facing women leaving abuse are; limited or no funds, finding a decent place to live, low self esteem, and a feeling of general helplessness. I am going to share your site with the local woman’s resource center and see what we can come up with. I simply LOVE this idea. Good on you! You are inspiring, women empowering women. I am going to promote your site on my website.

    February 1, 2015 at 5:32 pm

    • Thank you so much. Contact us via the email listed us on the site. Keep up your awesomeness!

      February 1, 2015 at 9:48 pm

  26. Maggie

    I am a 66 year old woman, born in Louisiana, now living in Eastern Washington State. I first saw information about y’all in We moon and I recently reconnected. My mind is swimming with possibilities of a facilitated work party. Friends have made many of these in the area, but I am inspired by MudGirls and the fact that you are really quite close. Further thinking necessary. Thank you for sharing and caring…

    February 8, 2015 at 6:37 pm

  27. Dale Wik

    Can you contact me about a possible building project on Protection Isl.? Thanks.

    March 6, 2015 at 7:04 pm

  28. Greetings
    I did the Lasqueti Mud Girls workshop in 2005 (Jen Gobby’s studio) and now, 10 years later, I’m finally ready to build my own cob oven with five artist friends from Vancouver. I’m wondering if someone can put me in touch with a local Mud Girl who would be interested in facilitating the delivery of materials to our property and spend at least the first day working with us until we get the hang of it. The dates are June 21-25 of this year.

    March 27, 2015 at 3:35 am

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