Log Building with Hand and Power Tools

Toimumise aeg: 30.04–05.05.2022

Six-days workshop about traditional log building using both hand and power tools. Over the logbuilding workshop, you’ll learn traditional Estonian log-building by cutting and raising a traditional smoke sauna (suitsusaun), a small log building that is an iconic form in Estonian vernacular architecture. We are practicing log scribing with hand tools like it was done originally in old days, but we also teach to use power tools with nowadays technique. 

The workshop curriculum includes visits to Mooste manor workshops, local log-building company and an evening in smoke sauna.

During the course 3 x 5 m sauna will be built with dove tail joints. Participants are not expected to have any log building experience.

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The Dates
The workshop is held on April 30 to May 5, 2022. Full lodging is provided from Friday April 29 evening to Friday May 6 morning.

The Group 
The course is designed for non-Estonian speakers and will be held in English. Space is limited to 8 participants; please register early. During the past years there have been participants from all over the world, from Canada to Australia, and also many English speakers from Estonia! 

The Tutor
Margus Palolill, is carpenter and teacher of Estonian traditional log-building. Born and raised in Southeast Estonia where heritage buildings are still amply present, he started with carpentry at the age of 20, first taking interest in shingle roofs and later in various traditional building styles – log-house, timberframe and earth building.

Training site
The course will be held in the Vanaajamaja Center for Traditional Building and Craft. It is located in the small village of Mooste, in southern Estonia. The Center is a renovated old grain dryer surrounded by 16th-century Mooste Manor. The Training Center consists of a broad workshop with enormous two-story heritage protected kiln oven, seminar room with exposition of traditional building materials, a small kitchenette for coffee breaks and a Finish sauna.

Accommodations are at the small private Mooste guesthouse, which is a restored building in the historic manor complex. All meals will be provided with an emphasis on local food.

It was decided to add smoke sauna tradition in Võromaa to UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity 2014. You’ll definitely have a chance to get part of the traditional sauna culture during your stay.

890 EUR,
includes everything in-country: tuition, accommodation, all meals, organized field-trips. Full lodging is provided from Friday April 29 evening to Friday May 6 morning. Participants are responsible for their own international transport, travel insurance, and extra-curricular costs.

We are expecting the deposit of participation fee (200 eur) to be paid within two weeks after registration to guarantee a spot for the participant. Deposit is not refundable. The rest of the tuition (690 eur) is to be paid one month prior to your arrival. 

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The course will be hosted by Vanaajamaja, an Estonian non-profit organization dedicated to establishing training programs, disseminating information, and generally serving as a center of Estonian traditional building and log house renovation. Vanaajaamaja has been hosting workshops and organizing training courses for Estonian carpenters since 1998.

Please find official travel to Estonia status updates here

More information/questions: info@vanaajamaja.ee; +372 56658117

Building Smoke Sauna with Hand Tools 2019


Mooste is a unique village in southeast Estonia with an active international community of crafts people, builders, artists and musicians: housed within the historic setting of the local manor. In this short video Mooste is introduced by Germain Joyet. Germain came to know Vanaajamaja and Mooste through several visits to Estonia. After a Vanaajamaja smoke sauna building workshop in April 2014, Germain decided to buy an old house in Mooste and renovate it for himself.

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Koolituse toimumise koht:
Vanaajamaja koolituskeskus