When Vani Kannan and her husband Balaji were expecting their first child in 2009, they were shocked at the number of nappies, plastic bottles, etc that they had to buy.

When the realisation of the effect it would have on the environment hit, they decided to move towards a sustainable life.

And so began the journey of constructing the couple’s mud home in the heart of Bengaluru — a project that began in early 2021 and saw the light of day in 2022.

The bricks for the home were made by mixing six elements — 7% cement, soil, red mud, steel blast, limestone and water.

The roofing was done by using mud blocks, thus eliminating the use of cement.

“Our windows are made of nandi matti (recycled wood),” says Vani, adding that it worked out 20% cheaper than buying new wood. “Our main door is around 80 years old,” she shares.

When you look around, you will see no air conditioners in the home, and the fans are off too.

“Our architect has designed the home in a way that we only switch on the lights after 6.30 pm while the sunroofs work their magic the rest of the time.”

For when the family does need electronics, it is powered by solar energy. Through the on-grid system, additional electricity produced is sent back to the grid for Rs 3 per unit, says Vani.

During the rainy season, it is the community borewells located 200 m from their home that fill up with water and provide them with an ample supply.