3 day Natural Plaster & Flooring Workshop

Tiruvannamalai, Tamilnadu

Note: Registration for this workshop will be open by November 2018.


Second edition of Indian Natural Plasters and Flooring which covers fine finishes for walls using different types of mud, lime, surkhi, cow dung, herbs, natural gums, fibres and oils. These plasters help in attaining comfortable indoor temperature without intoxicating and degrading the space for living.

Using admixtures derived from plants & animals will increase the strength and durability. Various shades can be achieved by adding natural pigments into the final layer of plaster and you are saving your home from toxic layers of paints and other chemicals. It can be applied on both Natural and Conventional buildings.

Flooring of pure Lime and various tiles like terracotta, fixing details with Lime-Surkhi and admixtures is one way of moving away from manufactured flooring options.

Course involves two Mud Plasters, two Mud and Lime Plaster and one pure Lime plaster which can be used for both Exterior & Interior as per building design. These simple plasters do not require highly skilled artisans for execution, but anyone aware about the sequence of application of different layers. Group of three participants will be provided with an area of 50 sq.ft. on Earthen walls to do base correction coat, first coat & final coat, to facilitate hands-on learning. Methods to get different textures on walls and prototype of Lime and Mud Paints will be taught. What to do and not to do for long life of Natural Plasters will also be covered in the course.

Course Details:

Day 1
Session 1
Introduction to Natural finishes.

Session 2

Material Library:
Mud – Knowing Types
Understanding its constituents – sand, silt and clay content.
Mud sampling and testing.

Lime – Lime Cycle
Slaking, Bagging and Storing Lime.
Methods in using Lime.
Admixtures used in plastering: Preparation of Herbal Mixes, Fibres, Starch and Natural Gums.
Session 3:
Tools in Plastering: Where & How to use
Plaster Sampling & Testing
Making test patches, analysing and choosing the right proportion.
1st Coat and Final Coat of All five Plaster mixes: Preparing/Sieving the ingredients, Mixing and Leaving for fermentation.
Session 4:Base Coat preparation
Day 2
Session 1 & 2
.Application of Base Coat
Session 3 & 4Application of 1st Coat of all five plasters.
Application techniques using different tools
Day 3
Session 1 & 2
Application of Final coat of all five plasters
Different ways of burnishing the surface.
Surface treatments, Water proofing using Lime and Earth paints.
Maintenance and repairs of plasters.
Session 3 & 4Lime and Tile Flooring
Question & Answer session


Biju Bhaskar, Islamuddin Muwal (mason from Rajasthan) and other members of Thannal.

Workshop Date:

22nd – 24th February 2019

Workshop Location:

Thannal campus, Tiruvannamalai, Tamilnadu.


Nearest Railway Stations: Tiruvannamalai, Katpadi and Villupuram.

Nearest Airport: Chennai, Bangalore.

Workshop fee:

The workshop fee is Rs. 10,000/- (Indians) and USD 185/- (foreign nationals) which includes lunch and excludes accommodation and site visit’s travel expenses.

We function in a manner in which all our studies, documentations, travels and researches are funded with the money from workshops, not from any external funds, sponsorships and fellowships. Projects are done on a gift culture, without any consultation fee, which are the results of our studies of Indian Traditional Natural Building techniques. We expect people who want to learn from us understand this situation and kindly not ask for discounts in our study programmes. As we do not have any scholarship available right now, you can find a sponsor for yourself to study with us (you will be supporting us this way).


We will be suggesting various guest houses near to site, where inquires can be made by the participants for accommodation. Accommodation is not included in workshop fee.


Participation is limited to 15 participants only, in first come first serve manner. Kindly use the payment link below to register for the workshop. This is only 50% of the workshop fee (Rs. 5,000/-), which has to be paid in advance to confirm your registration (non-refundable amount). Remaining 50% of the fee (Rs. 5,000/-) is to be paid on the 1st day of workshop, in cash only. Accommodation options and location of campus etc. will be shared after your registration is done.

We are seeking participants with all levels of experience. Most importantly, applicants should have enthusiasm, a deep willingness to learn, an appreciation for working with their hands and a good attitude!

Cancellation/Refund Policy:
You can cancel your participation in this workshop, but registration money can only be transferred to someone you nominate, as it is non-refundable, or you can also retain the amount as credit with us and use for our future workshops.


  • This workshop is open to all profession and age group.
  • We don’t entertain non participants at workshop site during workshop hours, unless it is unavoidable (please let us know in advance).
  • Do respect privacy of others when you go visit any nearby sites.
  • This is exclusively a hand-on workshop so get ready to stretch and twist your muscles.
  • Do wear light comfortable cotton clothes, preferably old, to beat the heat. There are very less chances of your clothes not getting soiled.
  • The sun can be a bit harsh here so carry sunscreen and head gears.
  • Do keep yourself hydrated to avoid any discomforts. You can also carry Electoral & Glucose for that extra boost of energy.
  • Wear foot wear that you can slip in and out of easily. Our Natural Cob Gym will need the use of your bare feet!
  • At times, working with hands can get a little rough; you can get a pair of work gloves along!
  • Please carry your emergency medicine if and when required.
  • Keep your cell phones away while working, this is a no selfie zone.
  • The itinerary is subjective to change as per the site and weather conditions.
  • For queries:
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