Bringing a historic house back to life
We've changed our life in a big way. For 10 years we lived on a hill in the north of Italy - and now we've sold up and are moving to the south of Germany, where we've found the most unbelievable home. We scooped it up as soon as we saw it. In fact, my husband didn't see it at all - we bought it before he even got a chance to see it. The house is a classic "Fachwerk" home, completed in 1830. The main living quarters are the second level, while the practical rooms - heating room, cold storage, and workshops - are on the ground floor.
Fachwerk is the German term for structures built with an exposed wood frame. In the case of this house, which is historically listed, the main construction (and subsequent historic restoration work) consisted of lime plaster, hay and wool insulation, and lime paints on the inside.
The owners raised their family in this home, which has a very quirky room arrangement. The former owners are among the most in-demand wood restoration specialists in Germany - and the house reflects this. This house served as a masterwork and joinery studio. Here are some of the details. I will show more later, after we move in, but here are a small few ideas of the quality of the house.
The hardwood floors are all hand-hewn and each board has a different width. We'll be lightening up some of the wood on the walls and ceilings, and keeping the lime plaster wall fairly neutral.
I am spending quite a bit of time on the interiors right now, and will be heading for some flea markets in Germany to find accessories.
Oh, the best parts of this house? Besides the fact that it's in beautiful shape, absolutely unique, and sweet as can be? There is a trap door that leads to a wine cave, and there is also a full workshop that has all the necessary equipment for a pottery studio - high tension plugs, a sink with warm and cold water, and plenty of storage. And it's HEATED - with WOOD! Which means I won't feel guilty triggering some warmth for myself in the winter months. That will be a first - in 14 years!