October 7 and 8, 2017 stone wall workshop at Eureka Rd. (Springfield VT)

Workshop Level: 1 & 2. Up to 16 participants with Certified Instructors Brian Fairfield and Matt Carter. Open to everyone. $360. 

  Saturday and Sunday Otober 7 and 8, 2017

The Stone Trust is excited to announce a new set of workshops in Springfield, VT.  With our Dummerston, VT facility at capacity, and more demand than we can handle, this is a fantastic new site to learn dry stone walling.  Learn the art and craft of Dry Stone Walling on Historic Vermont Field Walls.

Click Here to Register Now

The Site and Stone:

Set on a 200 acre property of field and forest, this is a fantastic location to learn the craft of dry stone walling.  The property includes active farm fields, actively managed forestland, trails, a beaver pond and wetland, and even a waterfall.  There are fantastic views in nearly every direction.  A truly beautiful Vermont landscape.  Actively farmed for over 200 years this property is near the heart of the historic village of Eureka (now gone), which was the first village within the town of Springfield.  The site features 1000’s of feet of historic dry stone wall that will begin to be repaired in workshops.

The stone used for the walls is what was gathered right out of the fields.  It is a mixture of the local metamorphic ledge along other types brought in by the glaciers long ago.  There is a nice mix of shapes from round to irregular with occasional flat ones as well.  It is very typical of the stone found throughout much of New England.  This workshop will be based in the real world.  How to work with the stone you have in the best way possible is a primary focus.

Eureka Rd Workshop Site
Eureka Rd Workshop Site
Image from the workshop site
Image from the workshop site
Workshop rebuilding old field wall in Vermont
Workshop rebuilding old field wall in Vermont

Workshop Format:

This  dry stone walling workshop will teach how to go about building a dry stone wall.  It is intended to be taken as a stand alone workshop or can be paired with the site preparation workshop happening the day before.

The workshop will run from 8:30 – 4:30 each day, with a break for lunch at noon.  The instructors will use a variety of visual teaching aids, discussion, and hands-on demonstrations.

In this workshop participants will learn how build a traditional dry stone wall in a real world, field wall, setting.  Learning how to make the best use of the available stone will be a key part of this workshop.  Participants will be guided through setting foundation stones, working with guide strings, building the first lift, placing through stones, building the 2nd lift, and and setting cope stones.

Each participant will have their own area of wall to work on from start to finish with instructors actively helping along the way.  Workshop participants typically each build about 35 sq ft in a fun supportive environment.  Some stone shaping will be done as a part of this workshop, but the emphasis will be on building with the stones you have.

Workshop Levels:

This is a Level 1 & 2 workshop.  Level 1 is suitable for everyone and no experience is required and there are no prerequisites.  Participants at level 1 will be working on a straight section of wall.  Level 2 is for those who have taken one or more walling workshops before, or are experienced stone workers.  Level 2 participants in this workshop will be at a section that includes building a wall end (cheek end).

Click Here to Register Now
Dry Stone wall being finished by workshop participants
Workshop participants finishing up

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Check out the corresponding Friday Site Preparation Workshop. October 6.

Sign up for both to get 3 days of amazing dry stone wall education!

laces-vertical-yellowLicensed Landscape Architects can receive 7.5 LA CES credit hours for attending the site prep workshop day and and 15 credit hours for the two day walling workshop.  Take both for 22.5 credit hours, almost 2 years worth in 3 days!   These workshops make a great break from the office and you will come away with an incredible knowledge base about dry stone walls that can be applied directly to your projects!

Learning objectives for this workshop:

  • How to build a stone wall using a mix of typical field stone
  • How to use guide strings for an even finish
  • How to build build efficiently
  • Know how to build all parts of a standard wall
  • Know the basic rules of walling
  • Know how to assess good and bad walls
  • How to do some basic shaping of stones
Beautiful Vermont Farm Land at the Workshop Site
Beautiful Vermont Farm Land at the Workshop Site

About The Instructors:

Brian Fairfield is a DSWA-GB Certified Advanced (Level III) waller from Kennebunkport, Maine. After shifting from lawn care to stone work on his early twenties, once he put his hands on stone he knew he would never stop. His approach to stone work is “Always do the absolute best I possibly can, and then do the next job better.”


Matt Carter is a DSWA-GB Certified Avanced (Level III) waller from Topsham, Maine. Matt’s strives to create beautiful, functional, and lasting works that honor the best traditions of the craft of stonework, as well as the historical, environmental, and cultural aspects of each site. He focuses on creating connection and continuity with the surrounding landscape and architecture on the site.


Other Workshops of Interest:

    2016 March Contractors Workshop group picture
    Contractors Workshop: One Day Indoor
    Friday, March 31, 2017

    This workshop is perfect for the landscape contractor interested in starting to build dry stone walls, or expand that line of work. In addition to the hands on building of a wall, there will be discussions of good work practices, pricing walls, proper foundations, etc. Level 1 for beginners, and Level 2 for experienced wallers.


    Level 1 dry stone wall workshop group photo
    Introductory Workshop: One Day Indoor
    Saturday, April 8, 2017

    This workshop is perfect for the homeowner or enthusiast looking to start learning about how to build dry stone walls. If you are looking to learn more before starting to build a wall at home or trying to educate yourself before hiring someone else to build a wall. This is the workshop for you. It is great introduction for landscapers who are looking to get into dry stone walling. Over the course of the day each participant will build about 25 sq. ft. of wall (one side), using natural round fieldstone. Participants will learn all the basic rules of structural walling that can be applied to any type of stone and project.


    Dry Stone Retaining Wall Course
    Retaining Wall Workshop: One Day Outdoor
    Saturday, April 8, 2017

    Here in the North East, many of the walls people are building are retaining walls. While all the principals of a free standing wall apply there are additional rules and methods to follow when building retaining walls. The focus needs to be on a sound structure that will last for generations. The stone may be round field stone or flatter ledge stone. The rules and principals learned here can be applied to all retaining walls whether hand-built or built with large stones and equipment.


    Stone Shaping Course 2016 group photo at The Stone Trust
    Stone Shaping Workshop: One Day Outdoor
    Sunday, April 9, 2017

    This workshop will spend the day learning about how to shape stones for use in dry stone walls. Participants will be introduced to a variety of stone types, and how to work with them. Both hand and power tools will be demonstrated and used. The stone shaping will focus on efficient practices, learning how to look at a stone and judge how to shape it, as well as proper use and care of tools. Stone types worked will likely include, granite, slate, local quarried schist, gneiss ‘field stone’ and more. Participants are encouraged to bring samples of their local stone to practice shaping, as well as any tools they would like to learn how to better use.


    Indoor Dry Stone Wall Workshop at The Stone Trust
    Introductory Workshop: One Day Indoor
    Sunday, April 9th, 2017

    This workshop is perfect for the homeowner or enthusiast looking to start learning about how to build dry stone walls. If you are looking to learn more before starting to build a wall at home or trying to educate yourself before hiring someone else to build a wall. This is the workshop for you. It is great introduction for landscapers who are looking to get into dry stone walling. Over the course of the day each participant will build about 25 sq. ft. of wall (one side), using natural round fieldstone. Participants will learn all the basic rules of structural walling that can be applied to any type of stone and project.


    two day level 1 - 9
    Introductory Workshop: One Day Outdoor
    Saturday, May 6, 2017

    This workshop is perfect for the homeowner or enthusiast looking to start learning about how to build dry stone walls. If you are looking to learn more before starting to build a wall at home or trying to educate yourself before hiring someone else to build a wall. This is the workshop for you. It is great introduction for landscapers who are looking to get into dry stone walling.

    Over the course of the day each participant will build about 25 sq. ft. of wall (one side), using flat ledge stone. Participants will learn all the basic rules of structural walling that can be applied to any type of stone and project. The different type of stone used is the primary difference between this workshop and the indoor introductory workshops.


    Women's dry stack stone wall workshop
    Women’s Introductory Workshop: One Day Indoor
    Saturday, May 6th, 2017

    A chance to learn from the women in North America who are DSWA Certifed Instructors! At The Stone Trust, all of our women’s only workshops are taught by women wallers. This workshop will have the only 3 women in North America who are certified dry stone wall instructors teaching!

    This workshop is an excellent introduction to dry stone walling for the homeowner, landscaper/gardener, or hobbyist. Over the course of the day each participant will build about 25 sq ft of wall (one side), using natural round fieldstone. You will learn all the basic rules of structural walling that can be applied to any type of stone and project.


    Women's dry stack stone wall workshop
    Women’s Level 2 Retaining Wall Workshop: One Day Outdoor
    Sunday, May 7th, 2017

    This workshop will have the only 3 women in North America who are certified dry stone wall instructors teaching! This workshop is intended as a follow up to the level 1 workshop the day before. The curriculum is still being written, but the aim is to delve into topics that there was not time for at a Level 1 workshop. Stay tuned for more details!


    Wallers learning to use batter frames and string lines for building dry stone walls, dry stack walls, and dry laid walls.
    Batter Frames and String Lines: One Day Indoor
    Sunday, May 7th, 2017

    This workshop is all about how to build and use guides for dry stone walling. We will show you different methods and materials to build batter frames for a variety of situations. Participants will split up into small groups to practice various techniques. Learn tips and tricks for correctly using string lines and how to prevent common errors. Learn how to determine the appropriate dimensions for the walls, correct batter angle, and what to do for special features and unusual circumstances.


    Seth Harris instructing the 2016 Test Prep workshop
    Spring 2017 Test Preparation Workshop: One Day Indoor
    Friday, May 19, 2017

    Prepare for your certification test! This workshop is perfect those planning to test on Monday. Learn tips and techniques to help you pass your test, all while practicing on the stone walls used for the tests. A must-take workshop for those planning to go for the difficult Level 2 test. Take this workshop and receive a discount on a Saturday or Sunday Pre-test, before testing on Monday.

    Seth Harris is a Level 2 certified waller and certified instructor. He has been a test site coordinator at The Stone Trust on several occasions and is well versed in what it takes to pass a test. There is nothing better than a day of tips from the pros! In addition to dry stone walling Seth is also an accomplished fine woodworker, blacksmith, excavator and more. He is the owner of Foxchair Mountain Craftsmen in Springfield VT.