A commercial builing with appartments overhead in Vannes, Brittany, France with a collambage facade.
Views: 501 02/01/2013
Colombage consists of wooden struts / supports typically ten centimetres thick, with gaps between them of perhaps 20 centimetres. These gaps are historically filled with some kind of thin wooden structure or thin wooden struts, joining the larger posts together, and on to which ‘torchis’ (‘cob’ in UK) is placed. This torchis essentially consists of clay, with the addition of chopped straw, cow manure or sand according to local practice.
This torchis, on the outside of the house at least, is then covered with a render of lime and sand. Sometimes the wood is also covered over with this render, sometimes it remains visible. You will be familiar with the appearance of a wall like this from old houses in both France and the UK – almost always with an appearance of age and beauty.