Shabby Chic

Shabby Chic : Sumptuous Settings and Lovely Things

4.05 (90 ratings by Goodreads)
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It helps the healthiness both of body and soul to live among beautiful things. --designer William Morris, 1882 Shabby Chic -- the rich, inviting, practical, time-worn style created by one of America's top designers, Rachel Ashwell, is a style of living that reflects the grace and simplicity of another time. Now you can do more than just dream of living in a Shabby Chic home. You can create one yourself. With invaluable treasure-hunting advice and tips for essential materials, furniture, objects and decorations, you can live a life of simple, but rich, beauty. With her practiced eye Rachel takes you on a tour of flea markets, antique malls, and a variety of secondhand sales -- estate, tag, yard, church, garage -- to demonstrate how, with a little taste, imagination, work and ingenuity, you can turn trinkets from the past into treasures for today. As Rachel sifts through the discarded, the crumbling, the shabby, she takes you step by step through her personal process, sharing how you, too, can spot a fabulous buy, repair and alter it, and by following her guideline words -- "comfort, function, " and "beauty" -- develop your own distinctive, original look that is down-to-earth yet truly exquisite. Following her sensible advice you can exchange the anonymity of mass-produced furniture and home accessories for unique, inviting surroundings for a fraction of the cost and decorate comfortable, livable rooms in which family heirlooms blend with flea-market finds and the new combines gracefully with the well worn. Lavishly illustrated with lovely and informative photographs and drawings, "Rachel Ashwell's Shabby Chic Treasure Hunting & Decorating Guide" shows you how to havethe home you've always dreamed of, a place where children's dinners are served on mix-and-match antique plates at a table covered with lace from a renovated curtain set with unironed linen napkins. A space where fresh flowers stand in antique jugs, complementing comfortable furniture covered in crisp white denim that is enhanced with each laundering. For Rachel, Shabby Chic is not just style. It is a way of living. With her trademark warmth and charm she reveals how she sleeps on embroidered antique linen and dresses in cashmeres and bias-cut silk dresses discovered in vintage clothing shops and flea markets. Throughout, she teaches you how to recognize and appreciate beauty in unlikely and often overlooked places, as well as how to define and refine your individual taste. Worn damask, relaxed velvets, tea-stained florals, washed-out cotton prints, tattered lace, monogrammed linen.... Comforting colors: celadon, mint and seafoam greens; dusty rose; ivories, creams and faded grays; a touch of pale sky-blue; crisp, clean white....Faded grandeur: the incomplete, the neglected, the crumbling, the cracked, the mismatched, the wrinkled.... Ruffles, gathers, tucks; scuffs, chips, imperfections; worn moldings, tired elegance, peeling paint.... An appreciation of vintage and history....This is Shabby Chic
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Product details

  • Hardback | 208 pages
  • 208.28 x 256.54 x 17.78mm | 771.1g
  • HarperCollins
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • colour illustrations
  • 006052393X
  • 9780060523930
  • 436,802

Review quote

..".Rachel Ashwell [is] the founder of the Shabby Chic home-decor empire and the queen of secondhand stylishness...."Mary Daniels, Chicago Tribune"When she merged English country style with L.A. ease, Rachel Ashwell didn't realize she was unleashing a phenomenon."Hamish Bowles, "Vogue Style"If Martha Stewart's operation in New York has cornered the market on proper home decorating and style advice, Rachel Ashwell of Malibu is setting herself up as a funky West Coast counterpoint.... It's for those people who want a nice house, but who want to put not just their coffee cup, but also their feet, on the coffee table.... Ashwell has a penchance for breaking traditional design rules. Shabby chic favors slipcovered sofas, peeling paint and rusting patio furniture, a laid-back decorating style that works well in houses full of fabric and furniture from boomers' childhoods."Barbara De Witt, "Los Angeles Daily News"Shabby Chic [is] a down-home yet genteel style of decorating that blends European refinement with American practicality.... Rachel Ashwell describes her style in her beautifully-photographed, idea-filled new book, "Shabby Chic."Karen Tina Harrison, "New York Post"Decorator Rachel Ashwell's book is an instruction manual for decorating like a star, without a celebrity's budget. Rachel Ashwell's Shabby Chic Treasure Hunting & Decorating Guide is... filled with glossy pictures, how-to diagrams and tips for decorating and refinishing...."Rebecca Harris, "Westside Weekly"Judy Griffin, interior design chairwoman with the American College for the Applied Arts in Los Angeles, said the shabby chic look caught on quickly for two reasons: It appeals to people's yearning for the safety ofchildhood, and it provides an inexpensive way to redecorate.""Los Angeles Daily News"Little did Rachel Ashwell know in 1989 when she opened a small furniture shop named Shabby Chic on exclusive Montana Avenue that her "look..". would ignite one of the strongest furniture trends of the '90s."Helaine Olen, "Los Angeles Times"Let the foremeost authority on Shabby Chic aid in your attainment of that popular and practical style. "Rachel Ashwell's Shabby Chic Treasure Hunting and Decorating Guide leads you on a tour of flea markets, antique malls, and yard sales, describes how to discern trash from treasure, and even gives hints on restoration.... The best-selling "Shabby Chic more or less defined the style that in recent years has become widely imitated.... A terrific resource.""Palm Springs Life"You can... get the same laid-back style that celebrities like Madonna and Laura San Giacomo adore by following the advice of... guru Rachel Ashwell. "Shabby Chic: Treasure Hunting and Decorating Guide... will help elevate your look to star status.""Seventeen""Rachel Ashwell's Shabby Chic" is a treasure-hunter's dream guide...."Africa Ragland, "Palm Beach Post"Exquisitely photographed and richly detailed, this is the essential, step-by-step guide to finding the treasures of a lifetime....""Bay News
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Rating details

90 ratings
4.05 out of 5 stars
5 41% (37)
4 31% (28)
3 21% (19)
2 6% (5)
1 1% (1)
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