Saskatoon HOME Magazine Summer 2017

Page 10

AS THE ROMANS DO Saskatoon’s Latest Rammed Earth Residence The sunlight streaming into Paul Blaser’s spacious living room, coupled with its lofty 11-foot ceiling, creates a bright, airy atmosphere. When a visitor comments on the expansive vibe, Paul responds, “It’s a big room for thinking big thoughts.”


Saskatoon HOME


The architect, along with his wife, Katherine Soule Blaser, and their three children have just moved into their new Caswell Hill home—a dwelling that is ostensibly the outcome of such outsized thinking. Flanking the northeast corner


of Ashworth Holmes Park, the home is like no other on the block, or in the city, for that matter. It’s made with rammed earth—a building technique that’s been around for millennia. “Rammed earth is an ancient

way of making concrete. It is aggregate that’s bonded with cement,” says Paul. “You start with very fine aggregate—essentially sand—and you mix it in small batches with very little water and about a tenth the normal amount of cement.”