Designer Digs – Shabby Adds Some Celebrity to its Chic

One of my favorite designers and interior design entrepreneurs on the West Coast is Rachel Ashwell – best known for coining the décor trend and brand Shabby Chic. She grew an empire out of creating homes that were “comfortable, cozy, vintage and pretty” according to an Inc. report on her rise to retail fame. Her handpicked furniture, linens and accessories are predominantly white mixed with soft blues, greens, pinks. As the name suggests, Shabby Chic exudes an unexpected juxtaposition – in her collection you can find a mix of old with new, florals with stripes and the refined with the slightly tattered – but everything is beautiful.  I adore the feminine elegance she brings to every collection yet at the same time it is not so feminine that a man wouldn’t find comfort in it as well.

I recently saw an article on a Beverly Hills home on the market, currently owned by reality star Jessica Simpson and football hubby, Eric Johnson.  Its recent renovations, designed by the Queen of Shabby Chic, Rachel Ashwell, are absolutely stunning!

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Here are some of the pics I grabbed from the Sotheby’s listing. There are countless chandeliers and oh so chic french inspired furnishings!

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I would love to sleep in that bedroom (I would even sleep on that pink day bed in the nursery:))

This was the article I saw that had the shabby designs first catching my eye: http://hookedonhouses.net/2013/06/06/jessica-simpsons-shabby-chic-house-in-beverly-hills/

If money were no object, who would you have design your home? And what would it look like? Share here!

 

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Flea Market Fix Up – Redoing an Antique Armoire

I found a fabulous vintage armoire circa 1930 at a local antique shop for $40 last winter. I thought it was such a steal! And a great project for cold and rainy days. I wrote last week about my new love affair with chalk paint – had I known 6 months ago that it did not require any initial sanding and priming, I’d probably already be done with the Great Armoire project – but alas, one cannot know the things one does not know and so I have made this project all that much more difficult. I first began by attempting to sand away the front doors –but I quickly realized what I thought was wood, was actually a veneer paneling made of particle board. It easily peeled off in some areas – and not so easily in others. I was able to fully peel off one whole panel for the left door but the right door continued to be a trying effort. Discouraged at how much time it was taking, I kept putting off and putting off the project. After my recent discovery about the miracles of chalk paint, I became more enthusiastic about scraping off the remaining particle board on the right door. To my surprise (and likely due to the recent humidity), the remaining pieces of particle board that wouldn’t budge all winter, came off completely in one weekend without nearly as much effort as I expected.  I bought two new pieces of particle board to replace the old pieces I’d scraped off and now after I glue on the new pieces of particle board to the door panels, I will be ready to paint (finally)!!

Now I just have to decide on color – green, blue or pink?!?! Which color would you choose?

Here is my armoire when I first bought it, with the paneling scraped off and below that, some gorgeous inspiration photos, mostly from the online shops The Painted Cottage and Forever Pink Cottage Chic.

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Shabby Rococo Chic

Decorating in Shabby Rococo Chic? I am definitely a girly girl at heart – I may wear a lot of black, but there is usually something pink on me at all times, too.  In my love of shopping, vintage and home décor everything, I’ve been reading a lot of Rachel Ashwell books lately to see how she’s mastered her craft from thrifting to decorating and designing. She coined the décor term “shabby chic”, infamous for its pale pinks, blues and greens (think, painted furniture) paired with crisp clean whites (especially in slipcovered sofas). While I love everything about her style, I, personally, still need a little sparkle, a little brightness, a little bling in my space. While I love the traditionalism of certain décor elements, like a curvy Queen Anne leg, a French Provincial dresser and ice cream color palettes, I also love the ornate scroll detailing of a gorgeous gold, oversized mirror and those decadent glass dripping with crystals.   Think Betsey Johnson (the ultimate Queen of Black & Pink – with a lot of blinged out gold) meets Rachel Ashwell. Pair them together, and it’s definitely my design dream come true. I believe the best fitting term for this style is Rococo. You see Rococo in the architectural details of Victorian décor as well as in the glitz and glamour of Hollywood Regency and even in the color palette of Shabby Chic.

          The word Rococo itself comes from the French; rocaille, or stone, and coquilles, or shell. Not surprisingly, shells are one of the signature decorations in this style’s architectural details and designs.  With its 18th century origins, it is also known as late Baroque, encapsulating the curvaceous lines of Louis XV and the beginning of the architectural fluted posts of Louis XVI. It is famous for its mixture of pastels with gold, beautifully decadent painted murals, and curvaceous S lines in all its furniture and ornamentation. I think it is so elegant, so inspiring and fun all at once. For me, when I think of Paris Glam, I think of Rococo.

Check out some of  the Rococo style home décor goods in my Etsy store. From Mirrors to clocks, wallpaper, fabric  and more.

                Do you have a favorite decorating style? Are you drawn to any particular artifacts when you’re out treasure hunting? Share it with me here.  Happy decorating and happy thrifting!