Thanks to Rachel Ashwell, the term shabby chic has become a household word. It is a style that combines cottage style and a French country influence. It is now very fashionable to have your linens and your furniture looked used but not abused. If you are into DIY, shabby chic is the perfect style for you to hone your skill on. With shabby chic nothing is perfect so if you find that you do something a little wrong, it won’t be a problem.
The philosophy of shabby chic is the perfect one to use especially in these economic times. It is all about using what you have but in a new way, of taking little bits of leftovers and turning them into a fashion statement.
Bedrooms are the perfect place to begin. Vintage fabrics are a big part of shabby chic. Hit the flea markets in your area and the second hand stores and find some fabrics, laces, table covers, an old table, mirrors and just about anything that takes you fancy. These will be the bones of your new look.
The color scheme for shabby chic is muted, this is not about bold colors, shabby chic is about white in all its amazing variations, pastels, florals and soft tones. A good place to start in the bedroom is to try your hand at making a padded headboard with some of the vintage fabric that you have found. You can use your current headboard as a base and cover it with padding and batting or you can get a piece of plywood and cut it to the size and shape that you want. You need to glue the foam padding to the headboard or the plywood. A heavy duty stapler will help you to attach your vintage fabric to the batting which you will have wrapped around the foam. If you are feeling particularly adventurous in your DIY you can add buttons to the headboard. To do this you will need to drill a hole through the headboard and attach the buttons to the front with thread through to the back, you can then staple the thread to the back.
If you have a new modern dresser that you don’t particularly like consider painting it a pastel color and then paint over it with white crackle paint. This will allow the pastel paint to show through the crackles. You can also feel free to bruise your furniture a bit so it isn’t so perfect. Add new hardware to your dresser or if you can find vintage hardware that is great too.
If you have never made slip covers, this is the time to give it a try. You can take a class if you feel more comfortable with acquiring this DIY skill or you can print off instructions from the Internet and try ship covering a small chair to match your bedroom. If you want to change your bedding adding a vintage chenille bedspread would be a nice look or there are some nice Laura Ashley patterns that would fit nicely into a shabby chic decor.
Painting plays a large part of the DIY aspect of shabby chic. Painting the walls of your rooms, painting your accessories such as the frame of a mirror these are all things you can do yourself. You need to get your painting and sewing skills up to par. Shabby chic is a way to use the things that you have in new and different ways. With some paint and wonderful vintage fabrics you will be able to create a shabby chic look that you will love.