The art of manifesting a field hut
In earlier days, Casper Vorting spent much of his time searching for artisan skills. He learned much from books but the deep knowledge was passed on from skilled craftsmen. Sadly the previous generation of master artisans are slowly disappearing together with their knowledge due to the increased use of modern technology. Casper was driven by his curiosity and a love for traditional ways using high quality ingredients. His sense for real quality is what has guided him to where he is today.
I must admit I thought some of it was a waste of time. Little did I know that he was actually collecting important knowledge and skills for our future life. Had I paid more attention back then, I would have understood, why time flies in the company of these beautiful people. They have so much to give and are extremely passionate and grateful to give. Casper just took it all in, whilst for years I missed out by judging and misjudging.
But not anymore. I am in awe as I watch Casper put it all into action every single day. I witness his desire for innovation, and creativity, his passion for engineering and craftsmanship and then blown away as his ideas unfold into the most amazing creations.
Before I go on I would like to invite you to take a look on one of his many crazy projects.
As Bøgedal Brewery grew and began to land on its feet, Casper became interested in growing our own barley and rye. He turned to Børge Jensen, an old farmer, who had been working with grains for the Nordic Gene-bank for decades. From his seed-bank, we got a small amount of unique and interesting grains, carefully selected for brewing. From these tiny seeds an entire new chapter in our life was born. The art of cultivating grains, harvesting and floor malting had begun. And from this, amazing beers, new tastes and new needs.
From old grains to a hut of wood and straw
Summer in Denmark can be very wet and so we needed some kind of shelter for the sheaf after harvesting and before threshing. As always Casper knew long before I did and made it clear that the Hut had to be a special structure and that it had to be built sooner rather than later. The decision to construct the Field Hut had begun. The inspiration for the Field Hut actually started in Thailand where we were drinking coffee in a beautiful building constructed entirely of wood. We were silent for a long time as we contemplated the design. After this inspiration infusion and some sketches, Casper came up with a design based on a wood and straw construction. It was elegant, simple and strong.
Help came from Mexico, America and Japan
Casper is an engineer and has solid experience in building from the farm he could handle the initial phase of the construction. We just needed some help to complete the construction.
It came from Japan, where Mexican-American couple, Aldo and Sienna who had lived there for 5 years. They had tasted our beer in Tokyo and decided to ask for work experience at Bøgedal on the way home to Boulder Colorado.
Digging holes and barking wood may not have been what they expected but they kept in mind the story of the cathedral in Milan built by two stonemasons. One stonemason cut stones whilst the other built the cathedral. Aldo and Sienna learned something useful about craft and being faithful to your vision.
Sienna posted this about the hut on Instagram recently: “Patience. The process of making is a process of quiet observation and minute adjustment as much as it is creation and physicality. This structure was years in the making - it started with several models of varying size, then 8 holes dug by hand, acquiring and preparing large wood posts, raising the entire structure using a tractor and recycled bailing cords with cranks and chains, using two axes to strip foraged branches down to usable sizes, and thatched by hand with the help of an afternoon tutorial. It is a gorgeous monument to the patient creative mind persevering and how much can be achieved with the dedication to a vision.”
Assembling and building the supporting frame was one thing but what followed proved to be most challenging part of the project. The roof thatching was the most challenging part of the project and the effort almost costing Casper his life and certainly all of his energy.
The thatching man, Casper consulted, told him that it would take between 2 or 3 builds similar to this project to master the skill for thatching… and I must admit it almost took me down. What was Casper thinking? Was he out of his mind? Why couldn’t we have done a standard shelter? But of course we couldn’t have done anything less than realise the original vision. In my heart I knew that this amazing structure had to be completed.
Amazingly, Casper single handedly thatched up to half of the roof structure. Even with the acknowledgment from his thatching mentor the roof was too much for him to complete alone. It was now that Casper reached out for help…
More help now from Canada & Norway
It is said that there is a Universal law of Manifestation. It states that when I am clear in what I want to manifest, the Universe listens and responds to help. And what I also know is that generous people are willing to participate in almost everything! I believe in the law of manifestation and I’m grateful for it!
The Universe listened and responded by bringing two amazing people into our lives that are now our dearest friends. Firstly, Canadian Joshua Evans, who has worked at Nordic Foodlab. Joshua had asked to volunteer earlier and somehow we kept postponing until there was another email in our inbox. He had some time available before starting his Phd at Cambridge. The timing was perfect and the work suited Joshua as we found out he can do almost anything. Quickly Joshua and Casper found their rhythm together to thatch the hut, straw to straw, layer by layer, round by round.
Then in the same week, another dear friend from Lofoten in Norway arrived. Troels Rosenkrantz is an award winning adventure movie cameraman and a farmer’s son from Holsterbro in Northern Denmark. When not surfing and skiing Troels is cleaning up beaches of plastic. In addition to being part of the roof thatching team, he also managed to document the process to create the cool little video shown in the top.
In one week, Joshua, Troels and our son Ask, helped Casper to manifest his vision formed in Thailand years before.