Couple turns ruin into dream Renaissance home & herbal lab

Michelle Dresing had long dreamed of moving to the countryside where she could collect the herbs for her natural skin care business. When she and her partner Marta found a neglected house barn in the foothills of the Biellese Alps, they began a 3-year odyssey to turn it into their dream home and the production facilities for their handmade soap and aromatherapy business Eukalia.

They bought the home for “nothing” and invested mostly their own labor in doing everything themselves. When they didn’t know how to do something, they asked for help from friends in the industry and borrowed all needed power tools. The home had been abandoned by its owners for over a decade who had once let their animals – geese and goats – roam through the first floor, so the space needed a lot of work. The women let out stress knocking down walls and peeling plaster, in the process uncovering intricate vaulted ceilings and tiles dated 1060.

The home sits at the edge of a village and has its own field and forest that the women have chosen not to mow so Michele can collect her herbs from the front yard (from dandelions to calendula), which she distills into essential oils in an artisanal distillery in the backyard. “I always dreamed of a home that would work for me.”

They created living space in a now mostly open upstairs. Downstairs is dedicated to the business with a laboratory for soap and cream making and a production room where the product is prepped (with packaging and labels they designed). The women gave us a tour of their home, the lab, and the building they bought next door that was once the more noble building that still has intact 300-year-old chestnut flooring and ceilings. They hope to expand their space to include space for visitors and a wellness retreat.

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23 Replies to “Couple turns ruin into dream Renaissance home & herbal lab”

  1. More than amazing! Those two ladies combine my two passions: I am an professional aromatherapist (sometimes distilling) and my hobby is houses, interior design, architecture. THANK you for sharing!

  2. Now that's my kind of house. A large dose of antiquity incorporated in the existing. And if only it could talk. All of my admiration to these ladies. A lot of work. It's beautiful.

  3. Three years of continuous work… Wow, as as someone who is currently renovating my old French cottage. My hat goes off to them. It truly is hard work.. Well done to you both 🙂

  4. I sure hope they save all those beautiful old doors it the Nobel House. I’d wager they are worth a small fortune. The home they restored is beautiful too! Love it!!

  5. What a treasure for a new home amazing architectural Design Within that Barn I am blown away great video graphic work as well

  6. Ragazze, avete fatto una cosa spettacolare! Brave e complimenti davvero!!!

  7. This is wonderful. Even though they changed things around, they still repurposed what was removed to make
    new walls with the brick. And then showing off more of the original walls and beautiful ceiling. Thanks for sharing their home and business.

  8. This is exactly what I want to do. Herbalism is so important to sustain your health. Very inspirational. 💛

  9. Always the best content on YT! Love this structure.. love those woman!

  10. I can tell you, from working for years in an essential oil company, that place smelled heavenly! 🤗🐝❤️

  11. So beautiful. I didn't want the video to end. I guess I want to live there. Absolutely wonderful ❤️

    Thank you Kristen and family, and the ladies who worked so hard to restore and renovate such a glorious old property.

  12. Hermoso trabajo de esas mujeres .. Beautiful work of those women . Thanks for sharing Kirsten .

  13. The red paint that they wanted to recreate is ox blood, that is mixed with ferous oxide and gets darker with time.

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