INTERN, 1/2 pay Worktrade, Wwoofing !

Would you love to …
   Experience more connection with Nature?
       Explore a wide variety of Natural Building & Sustainability Skills?
           Be immersed in a Living, Building Community? 
Attend one or more months at the Strawbale Studio outside Oxford, Michigan, USA. Openings are available April through September and for the annual January Winternship.  Come as an Intern, 1/2 Pay Worktrader or Wwoofer. **
The 2017 Program includes a lifestyle of sustainability.  
  • Shade-tree classes  will be taught on components of natural building ~ foundation, framing, strawbale, cob and use of local materials ~ accompanied by tours of the structures on site.
  • Hands-on activities will focus on earth plastering & sculpting,  earthen floors, oil finishes on benches, detailing of living roofs, site hydrology & creative landscaping and permaculture projects.  There will be some variation between months based on progress.
  • Daily Lifestyle includes foraging, spoon-carving, fermenting, composting, solar oven, outdoor rocket cooker, earth oven, shiitake mushroom production & more.  Buildings on site are the Strawbale Studio, Kids Cottage, Hobbit Sauna, Spiral Chamber and several pretty awesome woodsheds.  Living roofs, Thatched roofs.
  • Community connections: Monthly Full Moon Potluck & bonfire, Permaculture Meetup (off-site), 1 or 2 workshops or tours per month for the public. We have local farmers, and get our eggs and some of our produce from them.
  • Worktrade activities for 1/2 Pay WorkTraders and Wwoofers at Strawbale Studio are Grounds:  firewood, repair, lawn.  Office: data, editing, publicity.  Garden: planting, mulching, watering & harvesting.  Other: repair canoe, solar dehydrator.


On this beautiful rural wooded land  1 hour North of Detroit. Six miles outside a lovely small town, surrounded by farms, forests and meadows.  Within 6 miles of the Strawbale Studio there are some very nice outdoor opportunities:  Bald Mountain Recreation Center, The Seven Ponds Recreation Center and the Rails to Trails bike path system, connecting several small towns.  (There is a bike available to use).  Two swimming lakes and a series of connected lakes to explore by canoe.

Main Instructor & Coordinator, Deanne Bednar, is the illustrator of the Hand-Sculpted House & the Natural Plaster Book, and has 20 years of experience in natural building. Background: Art & Sustainable Futures teacher at the middle school level.  Loves to forage, use materials directly from nature in an artful and practical way !
Other instructors sometimes drop in:  Micah Lindquist, our round pole and spoon carving teacher,  Jim the Timberframer, a local guy who can show us his barn and tools.  Jared Bogdonov-Hanna a Permaculture Teacher who has designed some of the gardens on site. 



3 Program Options:  Intern, 1/2 Pay Worktrade, Wwoofer. All 3 Programs include room & board, classes & materials, plus sharing of household activities such as cooking & cleaning.

  • Intern  = Focus on the Projects.  Cost per month $950 or $850 prepaid 1 month in advance.
  • 1/2 Pay Worktrade = 10 hours Worktrade per week toward upkeep (office, grounds, gardens, based on participants skills & needs of Strawbale Studio).  The rest of the time, participate in the Internship & all classes.    Cost per month: $475 or $425 prepaid 1 month in advance.
  • Wwoofer = 20 hours Work-trade per week toward maintenance of gardens, grounds, office.  The rest of the time participate in the Internship & all classes. No money exchanged. No wwoofing option during the Winternship or Intensive Classes.




EXPECTATIONS for living and working together.  READ OVER to see if it is a fit for you 🙂

DETAILS on Worktrade & Wwoofing