Shabby Chic is one of the most popular design styles of our time but despite how popular it is, very few of us really know how to execute such a style properly. Understanding what ‘Shabby Chic’ is can help you get started in working out the best approach to your own interior and to help you out, we’ve put together a full guide to some of the key features you need to include.
What Is Shabby Chic?
Shabby chic ultimately refers to a style of interior decor that uses worn-down or aged pieces to create character and personality within any room. They usually incorporate some feminine touches, with florals, glass accents, ceramics and geometric patterns used throughout to create a more rugged yet stylish and ‘chic’ look. It’s a decor style that can be used in pretty much any room of the home, from the bathroom or kitchen, to the living room and, of course, the bedroom. Expect to see exposed materials regardless, whether it’s wood, metal or ‘unfinished’ materials like burlap, netting and in some cases, worn lace.
The Key Components:
So you’re ready to start decorating in the Shabby Chic style – but where do you even start? Well, the best thing you can do it start by matching together different components of the style to form the design you want, room by room. Some of the key components you’ll want to consider include:
Materials and texture play a huge part in most design styles, but even more so in Shabby Chic. Most homeware that’s made for this style is crafted in iron and wood, usually sporting a distressed or used look. Bed frames, chairs, tables, shelving, rugs and more all come in a variety of materials and can be a great way to incorporate different materials and textures into the space to get the design you desire. For accents, try linen and lace to get that feminine touch that is so particular for Shabby Chic, or pick out furniture with tassels to keep things looking and feeling traditional, chic and classy.
If you’re buying new furniture, particularly wooden or metal furniture, try and opt for pieces that have a distressed paint job or where you could customise, paint or distress the piece to take on that look. Our wooden headboards can work with shabby chic styles with a splash of paint or even for a little bit of neatness amongst the ‘Shabby’ design. Our Lovell Weathered Wooden Headboard already has a unique shabby chic look, and is available in three sizes:
While lighting can be a huge part of interior decor, Shabby Chic designs tend to make more use of natural light than anything synthetic. Curtains and drapes are common aspects of the overall look, but they’re left open to allow as much light in as possible during the day to ensure that things are kept bright and airy. For the evenings or darker days, lights with cooler tones can help to push that classy look, while warm hues give a more cosy atmosphere – pick the light hue depending on the room you’re decorating.
Your Colour Palette
Shabby Chic designs tend to make the most of neutral and natural tones. They offer a delicate design, which can be obtained using pastels, white shades and metallics to bring together that rustic, yet feminine and detailed approach. For the perfect shabby chic colour palette, start with shades of white and lighter greys, then accent this with pastels rather than anything darker. Darker shades will turn a Shabby Chic design into a Rustic one. Generally, it’s best to keep to airy tones even if you do opt for bold colours to make a statement and add personality.
You won’t often find a Shabby Chic interior that doesn’t have some kind of floral pattern integrated within it. Bold but classy prints are considered to be very ‘shabby chic’, particularly if they are worn down or mimic a geometric pattern such as spots, stripes, squares or repetitive patterns. Floral prints offer a regal finish to feminine accents, essentially putting the ‘Chic’ in ‘Shabby Chic’. This can be implemented with upholstery, cushions, wallpaper, decoupage or anything else you can think of – floral is quite a versatile print!
Given how similar Rustic and Shabby Chic designs can be, keeping to one rather than the other isn’t necessarily simple. Follow our advice above, however, and you’ll be well on your way to forming that perfect blend of shabby and chic for any room in your home. Take a look at our range of metal and wooden headboards to get started in your bedroom!