Alert:  I got a little chatty today…if you’re pressed for time you may want to read this when you have a few minutes.  I apologize for an inconvenience this may cause. 🙂

According to Wikipedia the term Shabby Chic was coined by The World of Interiors magazine in the 1980s and became extremely popular in the US in the ’90s.  But when I hear the term I immediately think of Rachel Ashwell.

When Rachel Ashwell first hit the market with her popular Shabby Chic look I was intrigued.   I didn’t visit one of her stores until the late ‘90s but she opened her first store in 1989 and wrote her first book in 1996. It was a trend I didn’t embrace for my own home, but I truly admired and liked some of her fabrics, and saw more than a few beautifully furnished homes using that style of design.  I viewed some of her recent work online and on her blog and I believe she’s stayed true to her original style but I noticed some upgrades on some of her furnishings, including some lovely antiques.  As a huge fan of antique furniture, I really like that detail.  (Source of images below: Rachel Ashwell ~ Shabby Chic)

 For a few years when I would hear the term shabby chic and I thought tired and trendy. But I confess I’ve come full circle in my thinking about the look.  While I still am not ready to convert, I certainly have an admiration for the style when I see it done well in blog land or in a shelter magazine.

I recently read a post on the topic by Kifus of Inspired Interiors.  She featured images from a Swedish magazine by the name of Skonahem that was titled shabby chic.  While I can’t read Swedish, the images were mostly wonderful and the rooms seemed inviting and country-cozy. (source of images below:  Skonahem via Inspired Interiors)


Once I started looking online (which can devour hours of time in the blink of an eye) I found HGTV had done some extensive posts on the shabby chic look.  There are some very pretty rooms when you follow the various links to English country/shabby chic and Beach/shabby chic. (Images below via:  HGTV blog)

Another favorite blog site is Glenda of The Paper Mulberry.  Her recent post titled, “Rustic White”, contained images of  rustic textures, mostly white, “breezy” and relaxed rooms.  I love the idea of a simple cottage with my favorite things and little else.  It holds the appeal of less is more and an uncluttered life. (Source of images below:  The Paper Mulberry)


I’m personally not ready for the dramatic change but its fun to view these beautiful rooms and dream a little dream about a cottage in the Cottswold’s with hubby, my dogs and bare essentials designed in this style.  What do you think, too stark, too spare?  Let’s talk.

By the way…I stumbled upon a new site that is so much fun to visit each new post Heather Bullard Lifestyle Blog Besides being a contributing Editor to County Living Magazine she has started her own on-line magazine called Souvenir Magazine.  You will get some great ideas for decor, dining, and DIY projects, and much more!

Below are a few images from the most recent issue: