Friederike Seedorf, thatch roof manufacturing

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Since 2007, Friederike Seedorf has been thatching roofs in Upper Franconia using the traditional thatching technique (“Schabtechnik”). This makes her the only craftswoman in her region to have the necessary material and process expertise for a type of roof that has become rare today, but was once characteristic of the region. Thatching was particularly widespread among Franconian weavers due to the low-cost raw material.

Name of Craft in the local language
Friederike Seedorf, Strohdachdeckerin
Type of Craft
Traditional thatch roofing, production of special thatch sheaves (Schaben), sale of long-stalked winter rye, part-time upholsterer
Knowledge Holder
Friederike Seedorf
Location, Website
Nentschau // www.schabmacherei.de Link to website
Contact
email: info@schabmacherei.de
Type of Business
Neugegründetes Unternehmen
Year of Establishment
2007
Successors
No

Workshop and sales space
100sqm (barn), no sales rooms, work on site at the customer's premises
Materials
Long-stalked winter rye straw from regional cultivation
Technology / Tools / Machines
Comb binder (sheaves), flail, threshing machine, straw comb, straw cutter
Techniques / Processes
Harvesting (machine), binding sheaves (machine), threshing (hand/machine), combing (hand), tying with straw rope (hand), shaping (hand), cutting straws to the same length (hand), roofing
Members / Employees
Friederike Seedorf, short-term helpers for harvesting, threshing, roofing
Apprentices
Thatching is not a vocational training programme. However, Friederike Seedorf passes on her knowledge in workshops.
Education of the Craftsperson
Learning by doing, first by renewing the thatched roof of her own house (from 2007) and then by working for an association that thatched the roof of a neighbouring old weaver's house using the sheaf technique. Due to the increasing demand, the desire arose to turn this into a profession.

Best-selling product
Thatched roofs
Average time of production
Two years from sowing the rye to processing the straw sheaves on the roof. Most roofs require two complete harvests, so a roof can sometimes take four years to complete.
Average price per item
50.000€ per roof