Shabby chic

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Shabby Chic or the art of aging artfully! Here are a few simple steps how to decorate an old wooden box with a decorative technique simple and striking.

Shabby chic
Arch. Maria Leone
Arch. Maria Leone

A little history of shabby chic

Mobili Shabby Chic Surely has happened to you, when entering into a gift or furnishings shop, to be hopelessly attracted to the series of small pieces of furniture and objects, usually made of wood, which look very rustic and seem to have a story to tell: the technique used to age them so well is called Shabby Chic and it's really very easy to carry out!

Let's find out the secrets of this popular decorative technique.

The term Shabby Chic, indicates a country style that is hard to miss because it is characterized by furniture and furnishings, usually light in color, aged with art: it derives from the style of country English homes, which were usually furnished with recovery furnitures which were often faded.

In Italy, the Shabby takes hold in the late eighties thanks to Rachel Ashwell, a creative British designer beloved by us, the creative artists. She reinterpreted this style, using it for the recovery of disused furniture: the result was to get environments characterized by a kind of cozy familiarity.

As mentioned previously, the colors used for the Shabby are mainly clear: ivory and white cream first but also light gray, light blue and light pink.

Suppose you want to give a new look to the right wooden box whose value is directly proportional to its ugliness: decorating it with this technique can be a simple and effective solution.

Preparation of the object to be decorated

Scatola di recupero decorata con la tecnica Shabby Chic Whether it is an object of raw wood to decorate, whether it is an object of recovery, the first thing to do is to sand it completely: in the first case it is possible to make a rough sanding with fine paper.

In the second case, however, the intervention will be more thorough because it is necessary to remove the old color and any finish; sanding will be done using sthicker grained sandpaper.

Subsequently, to make the surface uniform, you should pass some wood putty on the holes, indentations and nodes using a spatula: once it dried up, it is necessary to remove the excess with an additional sanding that will definitely make the surface smooth and homogeneous.

After this, there is nothing left than to pass a primer for wood, useful to close the pores: this operation will allow for greater uniformity of color.

Technique of Shabby Chic

Cornici Shabby Chic You will easily find even at your home all the things that you need to make this type of decoration: we need in fact color acrylic ivory or cream, a little fine-grain sandpaper and a simple candle.

Pass the candle on the sides and especially on the edges of your box or where it is more likely that the object is worn out.

After you have done this, you can color the box with the selected color using a flat brush: remember to make the brush strokes in the same direction chosen - horizontal or vertical - to make the color more uniform and credible.

Since the effect we want to achieve is that of an aged object, it will be sufficient to perform a single pass of color.

Cornice Shabby Chic Once the acrylic has dryed, you switch to the most important phase of our decoration: the aging. To do this, with fine sandpaper sand very lightly there, where we have previously passed the candle: the wax on the surface of wood will facilitate this task, not allowing the color to be fixed.

The recommendation is to make credible the aging by sanding especially on the edges and on the protruding parts that are the first to be subjected to the effects of the time.

After this operation, you must pass a fixative to ensure the decoration on an ongoing basis: to remove the dust just pass a damp cloth, avoiding the use of detergents that could eventually ruin the decoration.

Shabby Chic Furniture

Credenza shabby Fg 922 di Marchetti Maison Shabby Chic is not just a decorative technique, but also a style of furniture. The success that since some years is having the Shabby has favored the emergence of small production companies specializing in the production of these furnishings which require a type of artisan workmanship: also the largest companies in the sector, given the growing interest towards this style, often offer lines that recall the idea of the aged forniture. Let's see some examples.

The elegance old fashioned is the hallmark of the furniture made with a Shabby style: you will know them by the soft colors - white, ivory, cream or pastel colors - and by the wear and tear effect, made at art, on the corners and the decorations.

The cupboard FG 922 by Marchetti Maison is a good example: it is made of milky mistral patina with decors and feet in antique patina butter.

Both the foot and the festoons are in solid basswood and fully hand-carved: the finishes, are available in different colors ranging from bright colors previously seen in natural wood tones to bright colors such as antique fuchsia and an intense blue china.

Tavolo shabby di LuxeLodge For a romantic stay, here is the rectangular table from the collection Provence by Luxe Lodge to which it is possible to match the chairs made in the same style: the hand application of the patina on the surface gives rise to differences of tone read that adorn the furniture belonging to this collection, making each element a unique piece.

Even the bathroom can be shabby and chic, just choose a few pieces capable of characterizing the environment: for example, the sink cabinet proposed by Lorenzon Gift. The design and solid structure, the result of a skilful use of the techniques of aging craft, reminiscent of antique furniture in the homes of the countryside: the same company makes the same style objects, furniture and paintings in country style.

Shabby Chic Furnishings

Set di tazze in stile shabby R2S Sometimes it takes very little to give that touch of antique to our home and if we can also easily choose the right accessories from home even better! is an online store that meets the needs of the most avid fan of Shabby Chic: gifts for the kitchen, paintings, fabrics, frames, boxes and even jewelery, all made in Shabby style.

Among all of them I chose to show you this antique wooden trunk that I would see well in a bedroom or in a living room and the metal jug Farm Fresh Eggs, characterized by a very vintage pickled effect that can be used to serve water at the table or it can just be exposed in the kitchen.

A few more ideas to antique color kitchen or living room: how to resist the refined set proposed by R2S?

It is composed of two mugs made in a fancy pink shade representing the ultimate romantic flower, the rose.

Vintage effect for the backsplash proposed by Blanc Mariclo, ideal for serving tee and the most modern cupcakes during an afternoon with friends.

Appliances with vintage effect

Forno Shabby SMEG SC750 Do not worry, I have not managed to find Shabby Chic appliances yet! But let me tell you a few examples from the retro design, suitable to be placed in a setting decorated in this style: Vintage Icon EcoV310 by De Longhi is a coffee machine in which Americans appliances design recalls the sixties but with significantly enhanced performance.

In the meantime, you can use either ground coffee in pods; it also has a handy cup warmer tray that allows you to have cups always warm, just like at the bar.

By Smeg finally, an appliance characterized by the harmonious balance of the details and the clever combination of materials: it is the multifunction electric oven SC750 inspired by the ancient craftsmanship of blacksmiths in the mountains. While the door is characterized by an aesthetic motif inspired by the wrought iron, the outer frame of the door is characterized by a double inlay that adds further.

Post: Shabby chic
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