Sustainable Design at Blackwood

About Sustainable Design

Interested in incorporating natural elements and environmentally friendly design into your home or office?

We understand that it can be overwhelming to determine where to begin, what choices to make, and who to work with and trust. Blackwood Living’s Sustainable Design Services, led by Blackwood founder Cath Conlon, hopes to make these decisions easier for you. Through Cath’s many years of working in sustainable design and building, she has learned the ins and outs of how to successfully implement any number of environmentally conscious building practices. For example: say you hoped to have a constant, refreshing breeze flow through your home. Cath might recommend utilizing natural venturis and shifting the orientation of your foundation a few degrees one direction or another. These two small, critical moves would be all it takes to make a major difference in cooling your home and increasing your exposure to the outdoors. At Blackwood Living Sustainable Design Services, we utilize permaculture design principles. These principles are centered around simulating and/or directly utilizing the patterns and resilient features observed in natural ecosystems.

The Principles
of Permaculture

Observe and interact.

Permaculture relies on an understanding of your site and local condition.

Catch and store energy.
Obtain a yield.
Apply self-regulation and respond to feedback.
Use renewable resources.
Produce no waste.
Design from pattern to details.
Integrate rather than segregate.

The three ethical principles of permaculture:

Care of the Earth. Care of People. Return of surplus to Earth and people.


Consulting Services

(fee applies)

As you begin the journey of dreaming up your home, studio, or office building, we invite you to visit Blackwood to see our 5,000-square foot straw bale home, better known as Baleyfield. This home is a physical example of one of Cath’s many sustainably designed projects and will help you better understand what is possible as you being to piece together the puzzle of your future space.

To schedule a consultation with Cath, contact us. At your visit, you can expect a tour of Baleyfield, finishing on the sprawling Baleyfield veranda, overlooking the farm’s gardens. There we’ll share a cup of tea and learn what you’re looking to create and how we can help you accomplish these ideas.