Category Archives: Hand Made

Recycled Paper-Making

Waste is a sin against nature, a curse of modern life…reusing, mending and recycling must be regarded as great sattvic virtues. Satish Kumar, Spritual Compass


Amy ran a paper-making workshop for the community as part of the Family Art Day organised by Islands Museum of Art. A technique she learned many years ago.

deckle 1

Old, used pieces of paper are torn and blended in a food blender. The pulp is mixed with water in a bowl then a deckle (mould) is used to collect a thin layer.


The top part of the deckle is taken off…


…and the part with the mesh is flipped onto a cloth and then gently pressed with a sponge to make the pulp stick and come away from the mesh.


Voila! Now leave in the sun to dry and the paper will easily peel off the cloth.


You can add threads, petals and even seeds to create beautiful effects.


This could be a lovely way to distribute seeds saved from the garden.

Cob Oven Building

Gary has built several earth ovens in India – but isn’t it time we had one at home? Having Sam here, a wwoofer who is keen to learn more about cob building, was a good excuse to get started.

oven 1

1. A sturdy foundation was created using bricks and a portland cement/sand mix. The wire was used to form it up.

oven 2

2. Sand, clay (found on our property) and straw…


… mixed together to form the actual oven.

oven 4

oven 6

3. A sand form is created to make a mold. A wooden block helps shape the front opening.

oven 5

4. The clay/sand/straw mix is then applied thickly around the sand and a chimney hole is made on top.

oven complete

5. When dry and firm, Gary and Sam removed the sand and placed paving slabs on the inside and at the front creating a smooth surface.

oven panther

Panther inspects while we wait for another coat of clay to dry. Can’t wait for that first pizza!