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vintage home decor shabby chic

This Spring I’m introducing a mini series that will explore four decorative modern interior design styles for your bedroom. Today we’re kicking off with Shabby Chic.


Shabby Chic screams worn and antique, but we shouldn’t forget that it should look and feel clean too. By this I mean architecturally clean lines, the balance between open space, floor space, and the amount and use of furniture in the room.

To make the room feel clean, we need to start with the floors. Natural wooden flooring, or whitewashed floorboards make a room lighter and bring a natural, earthiness to spaces. They’re easy to customise with a woven rug and they can be re-painted  in different colours or even sanded down to ooze rustic, shabby appeal.

interior design styles shabby chic colours


Bring softness to the room through light colour tones, such as whites and pastels. Think creams, champagne pinks, duck-egg blues and dreamy lilacs. These colours will make the room look comforting, inviting and feminine.


Shabby Chic style uses a lot of linen and lace that complements its romantic, fairy-tale feel. Remember, be subtle and don’t over do this! Add an off-white faded linen bedspread, or introduce patterns through a soft floral print duvet draped over a white metal bedstead. Wood, iron and metal are great for balancing the feminine feel, giving the room more solidarity and structure.


For furniture, seek one-off wooden drawers or cabinets from your local furniture store, a charity shop or a flea market. Paint them white and sand them down to give that ultimate DIY distressed look. Hunt for an antique cushioned desk chair with an iron frame and some rustic brass candle holders.


Although this style is already decorative, accessories can add an extra ‘oomph!’. For example, pick a plain wall in your bedroom and place a mismatch of floral paintings in different sized frames. As with furniture, these paintings can be found anywhere which really adds the vintage home decor touch.


Chandeliers make relaxed, yet glamorous additions to the bedroom. They might sound extravagant, but by picking one that is in proportion to your bedroom, it works well again by contrasting the soft with solidarity. Wall lights with metal and brass handles really suit the vintage aspect of the style too.


Shabby Chic is very much about carefully arranging an open space to create comfort. This is where the furniture placement is important. Conversation areas are pivotal, therefore configurations of tables, chairs and beds should not be unnoticed. Shabby Chic offers plenty of seating areas, that interact with other furniture pieces.

Don’t block windows with hefty furniture. Instead allow the natural light seep into the bedroom – this will make it brighter. Personally, I think the style works best when the bed takes centre stage and the rest of the furniture works around it. It can be useful to zone areas. For instance, a work area, a relaxation area and sleeping space. Take these zones and match the furniture to each one so that these spaces are filled in proportion to their context.

Shabby Chic is about conveying a soft, romantic feel whilst contrasting with tough materials such as wood and metal. The style allows you to be creative, go on the hunt for unique pieces and introduce some DIY skills. It’s a bedroom style that would suit someone who believes comfort is key, enjoys telling a story, all things intricate, decorative and vintage too.

Here are some products that I think will make great additions to all your Shabby Chic bedroom’s needs:

vintage home decor bed


Laura Ashley Bramley Blue Dining Chair


Dunelm Tiffany Kingsize Bedstead


OKA Hopkirk Chest of Drawers


Marks & Spencer Distressed Wood 3 Aperture Photo Frame



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