For the Love of Earthbags

The driving factor behind this project is the belief that simple design is high design, particularly when working in the developing world.

For the Love of Earthbags (F.L.O.E.) is an interactive design project that aims to prove that it’s possible to approach high-design in a manner that is tasteful, modern, and groundbreaking by using only the most basic materials, such as the dirt beneath our feet.

This project is an initiative led by architect Travis Hughbanks and supported by Edge of Seven ( in partnership with the local community of Basa, Nepal.

Edge of Seven is a nonprofit organization that generates awareness and volunteer support for projects that invest in education, health and economic opportunity for girls in developing countries. According to the World Bank, 30 percent of Nepalis live in poverty and this population is most concentrated in rural areas where people survive off of agriculture and subsistence farming. For Edge of Seven, earthbags offered an opportunity to improve rural educational infrastructure and combat poverty in the most low-cost, efficient and sustainable way possible.

How will the funding be spent? The money raised through this campaign will be used for supplies to create the earthbag school, educational tools, and the production of the graphic materials.

F.L.O.E.’s end goal is to elevate the practice of earthbag construction by producing several engaging and creative educational materials that will be used both to promote earthbag construction and teach local residents how to build with this method. The materials to be produced are an animated video and a graphic print manual.

To read more about this innovative project and see more of their interesting graphics check out this website:

We have profiled the Nepali school project on several other posts:

6 thoughts on “For the Love of Earthbags”

  1. Well looks like this argument is closed now. atleast 2 earthquakes exceeding 7 and not one earthbag structure came falling down or damaged to any degree:). Its all been proved in Nepal now, so earthbags are the safest structures we have right now!

    • I’m still waiting on detailed reports on each building so we know more information, but from what we’ve heard so far this is very strong evidence.

      Also, strawbale buildings are very strong. That’s what they’re building in Pakistan after the earthquake there.

  2. In the military, as an engineer, I made hundreds of “earth bag” structures. I recognize “earth bags” have a reasonable r-value and can be used to produce nice looking structures. I also know “earth bags”, like other basic masonry tool, do not provide reliable load bearing walls for more than small structures like the one you’ve depicted.

    I would love an all-natural and easy to use load bearing system that allowed construction of multiple storied buildings with full foundational support and earthquake proof exterior skins. One good shake, and that beautiful (and I mean it) school in Nepal comes tumbling down kill the children inside. Your concrete wall caps are common through-out the third world and are responsible for thousands of deaths.

    I’m on your side. I want safe, all-natural buildings. Keep up the good work.


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