A Sampler of Alternative Homes : Approaching Sustainable Architecture [VHS]

9780916289256: A Sampler of Alternative Homes : Approaching Sustainable Architecture [VHS]
View all copies of this ISBN edition:

Enjoy a look at a fascinating variety of homes and the creative people who built them! Discover how passive solar design and environmentally low-impact materials can be used to create comfortable and economical homes. See the use of both traditional materials, such as adobe, and innovative materials, such as papercrete and sandbags.

The program begins with an overview of the basic tenets of sustainable architecture. Passive solar design and the use of natural, local, and/or recycled building materials are emphasized.

Building with earth is demonstrated by visits to an adobe block house, an Islamic cultural center made of vaults of adobe, a unique and artistic hut-like house made of piled adobe, and a rammed earth house under construction. The process of building and the nature of the material is described by the people who have done the work.

Various straw bale houses are shown. Both load-bearing and non load-bearing methods are described, with particular attention to the use of natural stucco materials and the need to keep the building skins breathable. A charming dome hermitage made of straw bales is described by both the builder/architect and the resident.

Techniques for earth-sheltering are demonstrated: there is a visit to an earthship under construction. Then a "gallery" of completed earthships accompanied by music provides a break from the technical discussion. A lovely cordwood/earth-sheltered home is described by the owner/builder. A dug-out kiva in the desert, and a unique technique for creating thin-shelled concrete domes with a rotating sectional mold, complete this section on earth-sheltering.

Papercrete, a new building material made with recycled paper and cement, is discussed by two different people who "invented" it. Homes and experimental buildings using this material are shown.

Earthbag (sandbag) building has been gaining popularity. The polypropylene bags can be filled with a variety of earthen materials and then stacked to form walls in the shape of domes or vertical walls. A visit to the dome house of a woman who built it with her grandson is fascinating. The beginning of a dome house created by the producer of this program shows one of these unique structures under construction.

The use of hybrid techniques is demonstrated by an owner/builder who made a round house with conventional wood framing and used straw bales for insulation.

The final section shows the use of existing containers as a shell for a house with the producer's wife taking the viewer on a tour of their bus conversion motorhome.

Included with the video is a resource guide to more information, including addresses and phones of most of the people in the video.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.


"An interesting look at alternatives to the traditional wood home. -- -Library Journal

"Life on the eco-edge!" -- -American Homestyle & Garden

"This video tour of alternative construction methods is definitely a tour de force of this genre... the video is more than just a quick overview - the builders answer a lot of questions about how and why they built the way they did. Handy hints and building tips abound. One particularly nice feature is the interviews with people who live in these homes....This video should be very inspiring for anybody who is interested in building their own low-cost, Earth-friendly home." -- -Review by Gordon Solberg in Earth Quarterly

From the Contributor:

This program was a couple of years in the making, and during that time I acquired a real appreciation for the dedication and ingenuity of builders around the U.S. who have been pioneering methods for building that are as earth-friendly as possible. These people are in the forefront of moving humanity towards a balanced lifestyle that will allow all life to flourish.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace


Sean Sands
ISBN 10: 0916289257 ISBN 13: 9780916289256
Used Quantity Available: 1
Last Word Books
(Olympia, WA, U.S.A.)

Book Description Condition: Good. 0916289257 Good, VHS tape in original box. Seller Inventory # SKU9143471

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy Used
US$ 26.41
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.50
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds