Learn building restoration skills

Classes designed to teach you the essential techniques to restore buildings.

Watch Blair teach building renovation

Expert coaching services to help you learn about your building's unique features.

master your Skills

Building Renovation Classes

We teach classes in masonry, plaster stucco, tuckpointing, and repointing. Our expert training offers comprehensive, hands-on activities using these techniques, simulating real-world renovation scenarios. You'll gain practical experience and industry-recognized skills.

These courses are hosted at both Blair's studio in Plainwell, MI or can be hosted at your site.

Complete Building Renovation Training

Learn aspects of building renovation with our classes.

Hands-On Renovation Techniques

Practice basic to advanced renovation techniques with expert training.

No Headless Masons

Focus on industry standards and techniques for high-quality work.

Real-World Renovation Scenarios

Our training simulates real-world renovation scenarios, so you can gain practical experience.


Sherron Feraro
Kalamazoo Historic Preservation Coordinator

Blair Bates is my top advisor and craftsperson for anything dealing with masonry and the trowel trades in old buildings. He understands old buildings and respects their character and inherent durability. He has been the instructor at workshops since 2003 for both the Old House Network and the Old House Owners Workshops.

Kyle Gulau
Building Developer

“If you own an old brick building, you need Blair. He’ll teach you important principles that have gotten lost in modern construction trades, best practices and techniques to use in your own work, and how to work with contractors to make sure they’re doing work right.”

Tom Nehil P.E.
Structural Engineer

“In the 40 years, I have known Blair, his commitment to learning and readiness to share with others have never diminished. He’s an energetic instructor whose enthusiasm is contagious; he really instills in his students the mindset of not just honing the skills but also understanding the materials and processes that go into the work.”

Joan and Steve Eddy
Homeowners Grayling, MI

“Blair’s enthusiasm and teaching style are amazing. He not only visited our project site but after just a short demonstration, Blair put the tools in our hands and guided us to competence and confidence in the completion of our project. Blair remains on our call list; he makes learning interesting, fun, and as effortless as stonework can be.”

Nelson B. Nave
AIA, Architect

“I am an Architect working on older and historic projects. I went to Blair’s Historic Mortar classes and learned a lot more than I ever thought. He covers the subjects in-depth and demonstration. You learn hands-on.”

Building Renovation Coaching

Our coaching services help building owners and professionals understand their properties and develop a plan to enhance their value and functionality. Our experts provide personalized coaching and consultation to guide you through the renovation process and achieve your goals. Transform your building with our expert guidance.

Drone inspection

Building assessments

Expert project guidance

Get a complete understanding of the exterior condition of a structure