STYLE FILE: Shabby Chic

Soft, feminine interiors are the main concept of a shabby chic home. White-washed vintage furniture is a great place to start. Mix in some white linens and lace, floral fabrics, and antique objects to create a beautifully romantic home.


A Little History

The term "Shabby Chic" was coined in 1980's. This style became increasingly popular in the US during the '90's, but it's roots come from Europe. Shabby chic design began in the UK, in opposition of Pop-Victorian design. While this style was colorful and expensive, the shabby chic style was focused on recycled and artisan pieces to create an elegant, refined look. Today, these romantic cottage spaces take inspiration from a variety of styles and arts- American Shaker,  French Country and Swedish Folk Art styles top off the list.


Shabby Chic interiors host soft, romantic color palettes. Clean whites, greige, ecru, and soft pastels set this style apart from similar styles that heavily rely on vintage charm, like Industrial Design.  

Pattern + Materials

Linens and delicate printed fabrics added to crisp, light filled rooms make for an eye-catching space. Printed jute grain sacks, rough lace, and mangle cloth add beautiful texture. Toile, floral, and striped prints bring a timeless elegance to the space.



The key to choosing finishes appropriate for a shabby chic space is to keep things light and airy. Natural and white-washed woods are a staple here. Choose finishes with a natural patina- recycling used materials is a great way to do this.    


Shabby chic homes are adorned with furniture that have soft, feminine silhouettes. Metal pieces with an aged look do well here. Painted pieces add to the airiness of the space. Natural, unpainted wood chairs and tables can anchor down these softer element and give your eyes something to focus on. Padded seat covers and slipcovered furniture create a cozy look. 

Decor + Details

Add the shine

Mirrors can add to the lightness of your space as well as making small spaces look larger. Opt for pieces that have scrollwork or carved frames. Vintage mirrors with black spots (cause by oxidiztion) will add to the aged effect of your space. 

Outdoors and In

Outdoor pieces such as bistro chairs and wicker furniture do just as well inside a shabby chic space as well as out. Create a garden cottage feel to your space by styling these pieces with delicate floral fabrics and bringing in fresh flowers and plants to decorate.

Ode to the Craft

Folk-art inspired pieces add charm to any space and are right at home with the shabby chic style. Art, decor, and furniture painted with intricate scrollwork designs and motifs are a must. Look for handcrafted pieces, or if your feeling artsy- give your own furniture a facelift!


Get more Shabby Chic room inspiration on my Pinterest Page!

Interested in a Shabby Chic make over of your own?

Peace & Love,